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@GW_MBB in Japan: Day One

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Throughout GW men's basketball's tour of Japan, student-athletes will be providing insight on their experiences on GWsports.com's blog, 22nd & G. On day one, the Colonials took in  Japan's national high school baseball tournament at Koshien Stadium, where 60,000 fans packed the house. Following the game, GW made a visit to ASICS Institute of Sport Science. Below, freshman center Collin Smith writes about his experience:

"Today was very entertaining. Our hotel is about an hour away from any and everything, but it was fun to do a Q&A with our tour guides, and pass jokes with the guys. When we arrived at the bus parking area [at Koshien Stadium] that is where we got a first taste of heat. It was excruciating, and was almost unbearable but we made it. When we arrived at the field, we immediately got a lot of love from the many Japanese citizens. I took a lot of pictures, and being around Yuta is like walking with a celebrity at all times.

Entering into the field was breathtaking. You could feel the spirit and soul in the stadium, and that actually put a spark in my heart, as I felt I was one with the players, fans, and the sport of baseball. It was packed; my colleagues and I couldn't even find a seat to sit in. We watched two innings of a game after an intermission, and it was cool seeing the players playing their hearts out. Leaving the field was kind of bittersweet due to the heat, but it was fun when we were inside interacting with the different people in the stadium. I'd do it again if I got the chance. 

ASICS sports science institute was amazing. First sight of the building was cool. It looked so modern, and techy. I have to admit though, there were a lot of stairs. Though the stairs were a small setback that everyone had to go through, we got to see what the process was with making the sole of a shoe. The video that was prepared for us was pretty cool, seeing the different athlete and sports use the ASICS brand, and how the testing was performed. I thought it was pretty cool to see the shoe with the gray dots on them show up on the screen, and how our tour guide moved it. Going into the gym with the basketball court was sweet as well, especially after not knowing that ASICS even made basketball shoes. They should produce some in the USA which I'm sure they're looking at in the future. After the tour, the Q&A session was handled well, and I'm glad that the guys took the time to answer a few questions that the students had. It was a very cool experience, and I commend those guys for putting up with us."

There are a number of ways to follow GW's travels. Updates will be posted to Twitter (@GW_MBB), Instagram (GW_MBB), Snapchat (GW_George) and Facebook (GW Men's Basketball). Additionally, you can see a composite of the team's social media activity here. http://www.gwsports.com/sports/m-baskbl/spec-rel/081216aaa.html

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