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FGCU students try to focus on class despite Dunk C...
FGCU students try to focus on class despite Dunk C...: FGCU students & professors are abuzz about the basketball team's success in the NCAA Tournament. Some professors pushed back tests because of games. FGCU handed out Dunk City ID cards to students and faculty. Video by Chris Umpierre (3/28/13)

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With all of the national attention his school has received this week, FGCU freshman Ebli De La Rosa admitted it has been a little hard concentrating on class.

His professors have had a difficult time, too.

“I had one chemistry professor tell us that we have a quiz on Friday, but I know you guys aren’t going to study for it because of the game,” De La Rosa said with a laugh.

The FGCU men’s basketball team plays the Florida Gators in the Sweet 16 tonight. FGCU junior Ryan Drendel said one of his professors moved back a test scheduled for Monday to Wednesday because there’s a chance the Eagles could be playing Sunday.

“Every single one of my professors has mentioned it,” De La Rosa said. “One student said he was going to go to the game and bring a ‘Dynamics class is more fun’ sign.”

Eileen Regelski, who works in FGCU’s registrar office, said professors and staff employees are all abuzz about the team.

“We’re all trying to read as much we can about the team,” Regelski said.

Professors haven’t canceled any classes with the exception of Monday’s pep rally, De La Rosa said. Many professors told students they didn’t have to go classes during the rally.

“In class, it’s hard to focus,” Drendel said. “Students are talking about the Dunk City rap videos. Then when you go out to the city people are talking about it. I went to a batting cage and someone told me, ‘Hey, you’re from FGCU. You guys are in the Sweet 16. Good job.”

In addition to seeing TV cameras and news stations like ESPN on campus, FGCU students have also noticed an increase in campus tours.

“I was sitting in the engineering lounge, and I saw four tours go by,” De La Rosa said. “This was in the middle of the week. That never happened before.”

De La Rosa said he’s not skipping classes because his team’s game isn’t until tonight. Plus, the reason he went to FGCU is for the engineering program.

Freshman Laura Otaiza said her school’s national exposure has actually inspired her to do better at school.

“It’s not hard to focus on class,” Otaiza said. “It just makes me want to go class even more because it shows a lot of school support.”

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