By Jeff Sherman Staff Writer Published Mar 31, 2009 at 11:06 AM

The Final Four is here and even though the Marquette men aren't hooping it up in Detroit, CNN has ranked the top cities for basketball in America in its list of "Great College Basketball Towns." And, Marquette and Milwaukee sits pretty at No. 4.  

CNN says it created the list, "with the help of experts at the NCAA, (who) chose a handful of basketball towns filled with great fans, rich traditions and history that make these places worth a visit."

Duke came in at No. 1. Even though it's a small school, its tradition is deep and winning tradition strong. No. 2 is Lawrence (University of Kansas) and No. 3 is Tom Crean's current school, Indiana in Bloomington, Ind.

Here's what CNN says about Marquette:

4. Marquette University in Milwaukee

"There is no football team at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wis. That means students and alumni are even more dedicated to the men's basketball team, they say.

"Marquette may be a Jesuit university with just over 11,000 students, but it boasts one of the highest attendance rates at basketball games in the country. Students at Marquette don't pitch tents like at Duke, but the games are so popular, some will bring their sleeping bags 10 hours before the game to get the best seat in the house.

"'It's such a great feeling to know you can walk anywhere in the city when you have a Marquette shirt on a basketball day and people will talk to you about basketball,' said Sarah Dembkowski, a sophomore at the university. 'It gives this city a bonding feeling.'

"Although the West region No. 6-seeded Golden Eagles lost to the University of Missouri in the tournament last week, a trip to the Bradley Center, where the Marquette men's basketball team plays (and where the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks play) is well worth the visit.

"Marquette students, called the Superfans, are famous for their peculiar behavior, dressing up in costumes to support their team and distracting opponents with oversized cutouts of celebrities' heads.

"On campus are several bars, including the Union Annex, that tout cheap beer pitchers and food specials for fans. Just several blocks from the university is Downtown Milwaukee. On Water Street, where most of the fans crowd on game day, visitors can hang with the locals and enjoy a hub of sports bars, taverns and restaurants."

Jeff Sherman Staff Writer

A life-long and passionate community leader and Milwaukeean, Jeff Sherman is a co-founder of OnMilwaukee.

He grew up in Wauwatosa and graduated from Marquette University, as a Warrior. He holds an MBA from Cardinal Stritch University, and is the founding president of Young Professionals of Milwaukee (YPM)/Fuel Milwaukee.

Early in his career, Sherman was one of youngest members of the Greater Milwaukee Committee, and currently is involved in numerous civic and community groups - including board positions at The Wisconsin Center District, Wisconsin Club and Marcus Center for the Performing Arts.  He's honored to have been named to The Business Journal's "30 under 30" and Milwaukee Magazine's "35 under 35" lists.  

He owns a condo in Downtown and lives in greater Milwaukee with his wife Stephanie, his son, Jake, and daughter Pierce. He's a political, music, sports and news junkie and thinks, for what it's worth, that all new movies should be released in theaters, on demand, online and on DVD simultaneously.

He also thinks you should read OnMilwaukee each and every day.