Friday, May 11, 2012

Beat Kentucky By Building New Assembly Hall

Some of you might have seen that Indiana ranks ninth nationally in attendance by averaging 16,462 for this past season.

You also might have noticed that Kentucky ranks No.1.

Does that get your Cream ‘n Crimson blood boiling?

Of course it does!

Consider this. If IU averaged a sellout for every game, which would be 17,222, it would only rank fifth nationally behind UK (23,721), Syracuse (23,619), Louisville (21,503) and North Carolina (20,159).

That’s bull!!

That leads to an obvious conclusion -- it’s time for Indiana to build a new, bigger and better basketball arena. If you’ve ever sat high up in Assembly Hall, which has been known to cause a fear of heights even in experienced mountain climbers, you know how good this would be.

Assembly Hall was designed based on -- and we are not making this up -- a livestock pavilion. In other words, the building that has become synonymous with Hoosier basketball for the last 40-plus years was based on a barn.

To be brief, IU officials got their design idea for Assembly Hall in the late 1940s, but didn’t have the funds to build it until the late 1960s. When they finally did get the money, they saw no reason to update the architectural plans (which would have cost money), even though they were 20 years old. In fact, being the fiscal conservatives that they were (others might call them tightwads), they also used the plans for Memorial Stadium.

So Assembly Hall was dated from the day it opened, and fans have suffered ever since.

It’s time to change that, but money is still a problem. It would cost around $150 million for IU to build a new basketball palace. That’s a lot, almost as much as John Calipari makes per Assembly Hall-dodging excuse, which is why we at Hoosierhoopla want to help.

We have begun a Build-A-New-Assembly-Hall fund that will ensure Hoosier fans get the type of home game experience they deserve. There will be bells, whistles, 25,000-or-so seats, exotic foods, inspiring music and a few surprises courtesy of Hugh Hefner and Lady Gaga.

Plus, with our fund, $1 out of every $2 will go exclusively to the new arena.

What happens to the other dollar? That’s for administrative costs that include trips to Hawaii and Paris, a fleet of Ferraris and a year’s supply of hot fudge sundaes.

Hey, administrating hundreds of millions of dollars is stressful!!!

For those interested, and to avoid the hassle of dealing with checks, just email us your credit card number (including the security code and expiration date!), social security number and mother’s maiden name.

What could be simpler?

As for those who say, “Hey, this is bogus. It’s a scam!,” stop being selfish. It’s not about you. It’s about doing something for the common good and showing Kentucky where the real gold standard program is.

In just a few short months, IU will be well on its way to kicking those scared-of-playing-in-Assembly-Hall Wildcats’ behinds in attendance. We’ll update you on the construction status no matter where we might be (the island of Santorini is near the top of the list) because we care that you care.

Remember, you’re doing this for your university.  We’re just here to help.


Zach Mayhew might not be a household name in an Indiana sports world dominated by Cody and Christian and Jordy, but he’s done something that no one in the history of Hoosier sports has done – win the Big Ten 10,000 meter championship.

Mayhew won on Friday in Madison, Wis., when he broke the Badgers’ Elliott Krause in the final 300 meters of the 6.2-mile race. His winning time of 28:55.06 was 30 seconds faster than any previous race at Wisconsin’s McClimon Complex. It was the fourth fastest time in school history and 25 seconds better than Mayhew’s previous person best.


This has NOTHING to do with Indiana or sports, but in the interest of enlightenment, we are passing on this email we received that demonstrates the differences in perception between men and women.

Wife's Diary:

Tonight, I thought my husband was acting weird. We had made plans to meet at a nice restaurant for dinner. I was shopping with my friends all day long, so I thought he was upset at the fact that I was a bit late, but he made no comment on it. Conversation wasn't flowing, so I suggested that we go somewhere quiet so we could talk. He agreed, but he didn't say much

I asked him what was wrong; He said, 'Nothing..' I asked him if it was my fault that he was upset He said he wasn't upset, that it had nothing to do with me, and not to worry about it. On the way home, I told him that I loved him. He smiled slightly, and kept driving. I can't explain his behavior. I don't know why he didn't say, 'I love you, too.'

When we got home, I felt as if I had lost him completely, as if he wanted nothing to do with me anymore. He just sat there quietly, and watched TV. He continued to seem distant and absent. Finally, with silence all around us, I decided to go to bed. About 15 minutes later, he came to bed. But I still felt that he was distracted, and his thoughts were somewhere else. He fell asleep; I cried. I don't know what to do. I'm almost sure that his thoughts are with someone else. My life is a disaster. 
Husband's Diary:

 A five putt...who the hell five putts?  


  1. Pete, I am an architect and most of your figures are way off. I won't even get into the design statements you made but the idea that $150 million would get you a new stadium are off by about 200 million. $150 million would get you a nice make over and renovation of Assembly Hall and correct seat position problems as well as add the bells and whistles you are talking about. A brand spanking new arean will now fall in the $300 to $350 million range. This is based on per square foot cost right now and the level of amenities that you are talking about. So don't get fans fooled into thinking something that just isn't true. I have been and architect for over 20 years and have helped design projects of over $600 million (large scale in other words) and people need to get a grip and know some truth.

  2. I agree replace assembly hall

  3. No. Not interested. I don't want a stale area for IU basketball. If we build a new arena I do not trust that the decision makers are smart enough to compel architects to create something that is unique and will give us the home court advantage we have now. Who cares where we stand in overall attendance? It actually makes sense to me that UK has the biggest arena. They don't care about the game day experience. All they care about is home many people they can get through the gates. That's not IU. Assembly hall is IU. Yes, it is weird and quirky but I sat in the top two seats of the upper corner when Kirk Haston hit the shot to beat MSU and it is one of my favourite memories. So drop the talk now. Don't let UK push us to be like them. We are not and that is what makes me proud to be a Hoosier.

  4. Yeah, I am going to have to disagree with you on this. IU does not need a new building. You look at Louisville's new arena and it looks like plastic and crappy. We don't want a professional basketball court. We want Assembly Hall. If you want to renovate and add seats, that's cool but replacing it will remove a lot of IU's home court advantage. Who cares if we are 9th on that list. It means nothing.

  5. Sounds to me like you need to pony up for better tickets when you go to games.

    Not only is your estimate of $150m way, way, way low, as the architect above pointed out, the very idea of replacing Assembly Hall is ridiculous.

    1) It is one of the great, unique arenas in all of sports. It is steeped with history. It creates an advantage for IU, precisely because of its design, that is unmatched in basketball. It is, in short, iconic.

    2) The mindset that a perfectly functional building (and the Hall is far more than functional) should be replaced just for the purpose of "the new" is a significant problem in college sports. IU has much better things to do with $300-$400m than build a basketball arena.

    3) Your reasoning is flawed. IU's discussions for the Hall's eventual replacement have never involved an arena that would be much bigger than the Hall's 17.5k seats. So, whether it be Assembly Hall or a replacement, IU would never climb to the top of your list.

    4) For literally thousands of us, there is never a time we get out of our cars and start the walk toward that building, that a special feeling doesn't come over us, if only fleetingly. You're thinking about some silly seat gap. I'm thinking about all the games I've been to there, the first time I walked in as a freshman with a long lost friend I haven't seen in years, the first time I had season tickets as an alumnus, all the great games when the place got so loud it was shaking...sorry, the tradition of the place and the students and alumni's connection to it are more important than your silly seat gap.

    When it starts falling apart and cannot be saved, then replace it. Until then, start appreciating its uniqueness rather than trashing it.

  6. Pete, Wonderful peice.
    Do you have any room left on your building committee?
    A new arena would be great.

    I hate those 5 putts as well. lol! Awesome.

  7. Assembly Hall should not be replaced. Could it be a little better, sure. But it has a lot of history, has a good number of seats, and is LOUD. You replace it with a 20+K arena and you won't have that.
    Biggest problem right now with IU is not playing our rival to the south. IU made a big mistake in not playing them on a neutral court. Most of the Hoosiers south of HWY 50 would consider the UK game the most important rivalry game and a must play. Crean and Glass blew it on this one bigtime.

    1. I am kind of glad IU stood up to Calapari and U of K this time. I live in Soutern Indiana and I absoltely hate to see the game go.. But more than that I as happy to see IU stand up to the U of K folks. I also think the game should always be played on campus.
      Just because U of K good seats seem to go to the folks who write blank checks doesn't mean that IU's students should not get the seats they get where they can make theirselves the sixth man for the team.
      Plus who wants to give U of K more recruiting opportunities in Indy?

  8. Your yarn about the development of Assembly Hall is completely different than the yarn I had previously heard regarding Assembly Hall. Except that the plans were dated.

  9. When I was a student, I worked at Alan Audio on Washington Street. The owner postulated that Assembly Hall was actually 2 folded horns, amplifying the crowd noise and aiming it directly at the floor. That is the result of the roof design, which forms the top half of the folded horn (the seating being the other). So, for a player, the noise is even greater than that experienced by the fans. Why give that up? Thats worth perhaps another 3,000 fans! Additionally, I don't remember feeling that Assembly Hall was in any way deficient. If anyting needs to be done for IU athletic facilities, it is increasing the capacity of the football staium, if you want football to take on any kind of respectability. Assembly Hall has as much panache as Pauley Pavillion; certainly more than Rupp Arena. To see how rediculous college venues can get, look at OSU's Value City Arena and its luxury boxes serving alcohol. Is that where you want IU to go?