ORLANDO They may be exciting when they get on the basketball floor, but Louisiana's Ragin' Cajuns don't go out of their way for excitement away from the arena.

The Cajuns are here for NCAA Tournament regional action, preparing to face North Carolina State at 11:15 a.m. today, and they are more focused on that than the myriad tourist offerings nearby.

They don't even go out to movies when they're on the road during the regular season.

"We just relax and get off our feet," senior guard Antoine Landry said. "We'll need our legs on Friday, because that's going to be a tough game.

"We really don't go out that much. We'll go eat, but after that we usually go back to our rooms, maybe look at (game) film and then shut it down."

Accountants on expense accounts have livelier times in Orlando than the Cajuns will, but the team is focused on the game and is trying to treat the experience like any other.

"It felt great to walk into the arena," Landry said of the 17,248-seat T.D. Waterhouse Centre, which has an interior that looks somewhat like the inside of the mother ship from "Close Encounters of the Third Kind."

"It's a whole different atmosphere. The game is so big, and there were people and cameras at practice. It's a great atmosphere to be in, and I think we handled it well. We practiced well. We looked good."

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Bruce Brown
bbrown@theadvertiser.com