If you're following the NCAA College Basketball Championships courtside, you may or may not be allowed a beer in your hand. Apparently, there are rules for the sale of alcohol at these games, but those rules bend quite a bit.

According to an article by Jason Notte on thestreet.com:

"During March Madness, the National Collegiate Athletic Association reminds its men's basketball audience frequently that it absolutely abhors alcohol ... on paper.

The short-form version of its alcohol policy is stacked with reminders that the governing body "has, for many years, banned sale of alcohol at NCAA championships" and has recommended that all member institutions "Prohibit the sale of alcoholic beverages during all preseason, regular season, conference and postseason intercollegiate athletic events" and "Prohibit on-site alcohol advertising during all preseason, regular season, conference and postseason intercollegiate events."

Neutral sites are another story. As are the various positions of NCAA universities and athletic conferences. As a result, alcohol sales -- and beer sales specifically -- are intrinsically tied to college sports and, especially, March Madness.

It's up to the host venues themselves to determine whether to serve alcohol."