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.