Sunday, March 28, 2010

Hoosier Hysteria

For the most part, my family could care less about sports. Still, watching a bit of the NCAA tournament this past couple of weeks has brought to mind a story from many years ago. It is easier to watch a game if it is a team you know something about. USU and BYU went out early. That left only 2 teams I cared anything about, West Virginia and Butler.

When I was pretty young, Mom and Dad took Mark and me to a Butler basketball game in their fieldhouse there in Indiana. It is a famous fieldhouse in that it is where the final game in the movie 'Hoosiers' was filmed.

"Hoosier Hysteria" is their madness for basketball, of course. Everything pretty much slows to a crawl during the high school playoffs each year.

The year we went to the Butler fieldhouse to watch them play had nothing to do with Butler, but everything to do with the fact they were playing Utah State. Mom and Dad both enjoyed basketball and both were graduates of Utah State, so they decided it would be fun to go watch the game and support USU. Mark and I were along for the ride. The Butler fieldhouse was packed. One of the USU players was actually from Indiana, so on the other side of the arena, down near the USU bench, sat maybe 8 people from his family who were cheering for USU. Everyone else was rabidly cheering for Butler, including some folks near us who were flinging some verbal niceties, including some racial epithets as one of the USU players was black.

Mom and Dad were cheering whenever USU made a basket which caused some looks from the rest of the crowd around us. I was pretty much oblivious to the whole thing, but not Mark. He was mortified that Mom and Dad were cheering for the wrong team. He did not like to go against the crowd. His first move was to sort of slide under our seats so people couldn't see that he was with us. After a while that wasn't enough space, so he moved away from us to another seat! I don't know how old we were then. Maybe he was 8 or so? I really have no idea.

Anyhow...there is our Butler connection. Congratulations on making it to the final four games in your hometown.

No comments: