CINCINNATI – Three students at the University of Cincinnati have been on guard this week protecting a part of their school pride from Crosstown Shootout shenanigans.
Since Monday night, Steven Breen and his cohorts have been camping out just in case Xavier fans think about toying with the 8-foot bronze statue of the greatest Bearcat of all time.
And Oscar Robertson paid his defenders a visit Wednesday to reward them.
"They come down and they have a little fun at our expense - dress him up in their colors - and we wanted to protect against that this year," Breen said.
The students even have shirts that say, "Oscar Watch 1.26.17."
They share an oversized tent outside Fifth Third Arena. It looks cold, but it's nicer than his dorm room, Breen said.
"Oh, this has got to be nicer. It's much bigger," he said.
They have electricity and computers. Apparently, along with their vigilance, they are doing homework.
Robertson came bearing gifts - what every college student wants.
"I appreciate this," the Big O told them.
"Yeah, absolutely, thank you for the pizza," Breen replied.
As for Thursday night's game, Oscar likes his alma mater, but offers this caution.
"You've got to meet the challenge. I don't know what kind of challenge X is going to bring. They've been pretty good in the past. They have to meet the challenge," Robertson said.