With an expired contract and both sides with different ideas on where the series should be played, the possibility of the Indiana-Kentucky series being placed on hiatus next winter seems real.
Indiana Athletic Director Fred Glass told Inside the Hall’s Justin Albers last week that he would prefer the series to remain at Assembly Hall and Rupp Arena, but Kentucky is pushing for a return to neutral sites.
Before returning to a home-and-home format in 2007, the annual clash between the Hoosiers and Wildcats had been played at Freedom Hall in Louisville and the RCA Dome in Indianapolis.
“I strongly prefer to keep the games on the respective campuses,” Glass told Inside the Hall on April 5. “We owe it to our student bodies to try to do that.”
If the situation can’t be resolved, it appears the Hoosiers may have found a suitable replacement: Kansas.
“We’ll have to wait and see,” Crean said. “We’re not overscheduling. We’re not playing Kentucky if we’re playing Kansas.”
Kansas and Indiana have talked about starting a series next season. “There is interest on both sides, and the networks want to do it,” Crean said.
Crean said he isn’t sure if the Kentucky game would survive as a series, whether it’s at a neutral site, next season or at all.
If Kentucky won’t commit to playing the game at Assembly Hall and Rupp Arena, Crean and Glass will have a decision to make. And there are several factors to consider.