Niagara Gazette


April 8, 2013


WNY watches as Newfane native coaches in NCAA Men's Final

Niagara Gazette — Beilein country is blooming, even with its native son drawing so many supporters to basketball’s biggest event.

Third-generation relatives of Michigan coach John Beilein shot baskets Saturday night out back from the same farmhouse on Lake Road in rural Burt that Beilein and his eight siblings grew up in.

The Wolverines’ Final Four victory over Syracuse was projected from an iPad onto the side of the house, now owned by Beilein’s niece, Sarah, and her husband, Mike Cappen. TVs were tucked into every available space inside. More than 40 family and friends gathered to watch “Uncle John” lead his team to tonight’s national championship game. A bonfire roared. The group roared louder.

The backyard “mud court,” as Tom Beilein described it, has been paved over. A modern hoop with glass backboards has been installed. But the old iron John spent every spare hour shooting at still hangs from a big tree.

“It almost brought me to tears having the family together in that spot in Burt, New York, rooting for my uncle,” said Bill Beilein, Sarah’s brother and the coach at nearby Niagara County Community College.

“I was in awe. It was just perfect, the atmosphere, the third generation of Beileins cheering just as loud as the first.”

The party will continue tonight in Burt, while Bill Beilein joins the growing contingent in Atlanta.

“I have eight brothers and sisters, big family,” John Beilein told reporters Sunday in Atlanta. “I was fortunate enough to go to a pretty good high school. The bonds that were formed between those guys and my family, all my 44 nieces and nephews, 22 just on my side, with those nine kids. So many people that have followed this career, whether they went to West Virginia games, Richmond games. Every year there has been a bus … 45 people from Lockport, from Danny Sheehan’s Steakhouse would come to a game every year.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page