Hundreds of fans, some lined up three or four deep behind barriers, waited almost an hour outside Gampel Pavilion at the UConn campus in Storrs to cheer on the women's basketball team as players and coaches headed out to program's record 20th Final Four.
The Huskies, who will be making a 12th straight trip to the national semifinals, will be trying to extend another record by winning a 12th national championship, their first since 2016.
Coach Geno Auriemma says he is "thrilled there is a feeling of joy" among fans this season, with more close games and two regular-season losses.
He said the fans had become spoiled by the expectation of winning.
UConn faces Notre Dame in the national semifinals on Friday in Tampa. The Irish beat the Huskies 91-89 on a buzzer-beater in overtime in last year's Final Four.