IU, Evansville to play 3-game series

The following release just popped into our inbox:

(EVANSVILLE, IN) – The last time they faced off in Evansville was December 20, 1995. Today, Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel had the pleasure of announcing that the University of Evansville’s Purple Aces will take on the Indiana University Hoosiers at Evansville’s new downtown arena in November 2011. The exact date is still pending.

“We couldn’t have chosen a better collegiate basketball matchup to tip off the inaugural season at our downtown arena than the Aces and the Hoosiers. I know many hours were put into making this happen and I am very glad both teams were able to reach an agreement,” said Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel. “The fans are going to be thrilled to see these teams hit the hardwood right here in Evansville and what a showcase the game will be for our new arena.”

The new 290,000 square-foot Evansville arena will be the home court for the University of Evansville Aces men’s and women’s basketball teams. Opening in late 2011, the arena will be the region’s center for sports and entertainment, designed to host basketball, hockey, concerts, exhibitions and shows for audiences as large as 11,000. The arena’s primary architect’s, Populous, Inc., work includes the Mizzou Arena at the University of Missouri, Oriole Park at Camden Yards in Baltimore, the new Yankee Stadium, Reliant Stadium in Houston, PETCO Park in San Diego, and the new TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, the largest project in collegiate sports history.

The November 2011 UE – IU game at Evansville’s new arena is one in a three game series which will tip off in Bloomington this season and wrap up in Bloomington during the 2013-14 season. “The past few weeks have been good ones for the University of Evansville basketball program, with the announcement that we will be hosting North Carolina this season and Indiana University next season. Our players are looking forward to the challenge, and I know our fans will enjoy having IU come to Evansville for the first time in a while,” said UE Coach Marty Simmons.

“I have a great deal of respect for Coach Simmons and the Evansville program and we are excited to begin a series with them,” said IU Coach Tom Crean. “There is great support for the Hoosiers in the Evansville area and playing in the new arena in the 2011-12 season will be something special for the fans of both teams.”

This will be the seventh game in a series between UE and IU that Indiana currently leads 6 – 0. The most recent matchup between UE and IU took place on December 9, 1997 in Bloomington with IU winning 85-73. The December 1995 game in Evansville also went to IU with a score of 76-48.

“We are very excited about having a basketball series with Indiana University. IU has a great basketball tradition and so do the Aces. Both teams will enjoy playing a game in the new downtown arena and we believe the community will share in our enthusiasm for the event next year in Evansville,” said John Stanley, University of Evansville Director of Athletics. “It takes a lot of effort by a lot of people to complete an arrangement like this. Special thanks go to the coaching staffs, IU AD Fred Glass, Trustee Pat Shoulders, Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel, and many others for helping to make this series become a reality.”

“Indiana University is really excited about this basketball series, especially playing in the new arena in Evansville. We offer our congratulations to Mayor Weinzapfel for his foresight and follow through in making the arena a reality. We’d also like to thank Pat Shoulders for the positive role he played in getting this series put together. It wouldn’t have happened without him,” said Fred Glass, Indiana University Director of Athletics.

  • Evansville Hoosier Fan

    Outstanding to hear. Should be a great atmosphere for one of the first games at the new stadium. Wish I could reserve my tickets today!

  • IndyD

    Didn’t North Carolina do the same thing and it was thought to be for CZ?

  • Molokopluss

    As an IU fan in Evansville this is great news! It’ll be fun to go watch them play in the new arena. One note… Evansville coach Marty Simmons played for IU 1983-1985 before transferring to UE in 1986. Some neat tie ins in this series… plus a nice in-state cupcake to beat up on

  • Luke72

    Nice addition. Good tradition, some great fans as well. Hope it will be a shot in the arm for their program. Back when it was a tough place to play!

  • http://twitter.com/iu77bu81 Pete Oren

    Great idea, might as well rekindle the series with the fighting irish as well.

  • Anonymous

    I am an expert on this not so exciting subject since I am and Evansville Bosse graduate. First of all, mark us down for 3 wins. The Purple Aces are terrible. The good news here is the fact this is not being played at Roberts Stadium. That place needs to die. Seriously.

    For you old timers, the Purple Aces used to be a regular in the NCAA tourney. They won the MCC many times. I imagine names like Brad Leaf, Richie Johnson and Parish Casebier mean very little to you. So I won’t go into any more detail.

  • Anonymous

    My guess would be that it was done more for Tyler. I know Duke always schedules a “home” game for one of it’s guys when it gets someone from across the country, and I think NC does the same.

  • Anonymous

    Don’t remember Leaf, but I do Johnson (New Albany) and Casebier (South Spencer, later Indiana Penal League I would assume after his “legal” troubles. Hell of a player, though. Had he not been a 6’1″ power forward he could have been tough. I know he put it on Damon Bailey one-on-one at a basketball camp when they were in HS.) Can’t believe you didn’t throw Dan Godfread and Scott Haffner’s names out there.

    Now IU needs to schedule an exhibition game with the best college team in Evansville, USI. It would be a pretty good test as far as exhibition games go.

  • Anonymous

    Haffner was a bad _ss. No doubt about it. 25 ppg as a senior. But that was
    well after their tourney runs.

    Agree on USI, they are getting it done.

  • ArtistFormerlyKnownAs_Aceman07

    Here’s to hoping that by the time this series takes place, IU has regained their rightful spot among the top programs in the country and this is a nice cupcake tune-up game!

    We can only hope.

  • Molokopluss

    I agree about Southern Indiana, they are a D2 powerhouse. I am an alum, and was around during the Bruce Pearl era. Great basketball years!

    USI has taken UE (should have won), Tennessee, and Southern Illinois to the wire in exhibition play… I would love to see them play, but the way USI has played in exhibition play in recent years it could be a potential hiccup for IU while rebuilding.

  • Spdew

    USI would get their tail handed to them in the MVC. U of E dominates the cross town rivalry historically.

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