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UL v. IU: Bold Strategy or Begging for Scraps?

Maybe the worst crowd ever.

Well, there isn’t any big UK-related news this morning, and unlike Pete Thamel, I’m not going to try to invent any (Boom, roasted).  But there is something rotten in the Yum! Center, and it looks like it’s not just that old double down that Martin left under the bleachers. No, this is worse.  What could be worse, you ask?  It’s the StayPuft Marshmallow Man a potential rivalry game between Louisville and Indiana.

After UK and IU found they couldn’t resolve their differences, Rick Pitino, ever the opportunist, jumped on the Hoosiers’ open schedule, and is trying to arrange a home-and-home with Tom Crean.  Seriously, that was fast.  Like, fifteen-seconds fast.  But Andy Katz is officially reporting that “Louisville coach Rick Pitino said he wants to play Indiana next season.”

I’m left wondering: is that sycophantic, or savvy?

My first reaction is that Louisville is letting their inferiority complex show, going after what Kentucky decided not to use in the hopes that it will get some attention.  It’s like that almost-popular guy in high school that asks the quarterback’s ex-girlfriend to prom hoping that she’ll be mad enough at her former beau that she’ll say yes.  Louisville knew it didn’t have a chance while IU was still on our schedule, but with this new schism between the formerly friendly head coaches, maybe there’s a chance that the Cards could sweep in and nab this game in a true “enemy-of-my-enemy” type friendship.  And I want to think that doing so just shows how desperate Louisville is to be like Kentucky.

But the more I think about it, and the more I want to make fun of it, it’s actually a smart move.  Man, it sucks to say that.  But think about it: UK will get national attention almost regardless of what its schedule looks like.  They’re the reigning champs, and people want to see how they recover from losing so much talent.  Plus, there’s that flat top.  That’s a ratings draw in and of itself.  But UL and IU aren’t the media darlings that Kentucky is.  Indiana may come close, but they’re not quite there yet.  So what better way get some attention than a “you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours” scheduling bargain?  And geographically, the game makes sense.  Louisville is practically in Indiana (and smells like it, too).

The timing couldn’t be better, either, assuming they get to play in 2012 (and Katz suspects they might not play until 2013).  Schedule this game last year, and it gets overlooked by several other non-conference games.  Schedule it next year, and both teams may not be very good.  This year, though?  It could be the UK/UNC of the 2012-13 season.  Two top-5 teams (if they make it that long) playing out of conference early in the year?  Non-UK college basketball fans will eat that one up.

As much as I want to think that Pitino is going after our garbage here, I have to say that this is probably a smart move on his part.  I don’t like to admit it, but sour grapes make a bitter whine.  You think, if the tables were turned, that Calipari wouldn’t schedule a game like this to jab Pitino?  And do you think we wouldn’t like it?  I remember at one point there was a push to try and get Swopshire to play for us, not because he was all that great, but just because it might piss Pitino off.  Apparently, two can play that game.

The question now is, what do I root for here?

A: The floor to cave in.

Article written by Corey Nichols

53 Comments for UL v. IU: Bold Strategy or Begging for Scraps?



  1. wellsir
    9:02 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    22nd



  2. Dee
    9:04 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    …………….



  3. Dickie Z
    9:06 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    This post could be summed up in one paragraph. Corey Nichols sucks!



  4. JZ
    9:12 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    From what I read on twitter, Crean declined ul’s request to play. I think bti had the tweet but according to him Crean turned down ul’s request to play and also play in Bloomington in 2012.



  5. Just saying
    9:24 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    they used to have this rivalry, and it sucked then too. I used to watch the game thinking, WOW UK has already beaten both of these teams. No one outside of “Kentuckiana” would give two SHeeTs about this “rivalry”. Two has-been programs begging for national attention and two a$$-hole coaches with egos bigger than the program they coach. Yea, UL/IU (yawn)



  6. Atlanta Alum
    9:26 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    All over the sports page down here that the NCAA is investigating the recruitment
    of Noel.



  7. HOO HOO
    9:27 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    We want UK, not Ricky 3 Stacks. Corey Nichols still sucks too.

    #vac8



  8. UK Homer
    9:29 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    This would be a great game for the 2012-13. Both will be highly ranked and maybe not exposed yet (I’m looking mainly at U of L). Should get national attention this season, but I don’t know after that. I don’t live in Louisville, but I’m guessing some may want this the same way some NKY Cat fans want UK vs UC.



  9. Hoo Hoo
    9:31 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Clarification: We want UK, but only if they have to come to our crap hole gymnasium every other year. #jealous



  10. BNClay
    9:31 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    I think it would be a good game and a smart move for both teams if they played. I wouldn’t really root for either team but I think it would be a good game to watch.

    I’d say IU wins by 10 @Bloomington, UofL wins by 2 @ Yum. Home teams would win pretty much everygame of the series because both teams get unbelievable officiating advantages in there buildings. Seems if they are down late they just start fouling to get steals, and missed shots, knowing that the refs are not gonna call it.



  11. CincyUK Fan
    9:33 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    I was down in ATL cheering on the CATS against them Hoosiers. IU fans are horrible with no class at all, worse than Card fans, I would hope IU gets beat….



  12. HOO HOO
    9:35 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Nice try signing in as me #9. But you are right, we do want you to come to our crap hole gym. And we are jealous of your 8.



  13. Al's IndiCats
    9:35 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    This is all well and fine, and the ex-squeeze analogy is a good example CorEy. The fact remains who blinked first between IU and Lil Bro? I’ve read on several on line blogs that UK was scared to play IU on a home and home series after this year, and of course that came from the basements and large walk-in closets of Lil brudder. But when asked why this game isn’t taking place next year it’s still the same dog and pony show that neither one could agree who was to get their name last on the marquee sign. In other words both wanted to start this love fest on their own court. So where’s the Chicken on this all you can eat buffet? It lays right at the feet of our younger, paler sibling, and our neighbors to the north who likes harming little playboy bunnies. The best part of it all the chickeness this foul isn’t even extra crispy, as a matter of fact they may get salmonella poisoning it’s so under cooked or half baked.



  14. Hunter
    9:35 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Quit taking shots at the city of louisville…



  15. symphonist41169
    9:39 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Gotta admit I’d root for Louisville in that matchup. After this past December 10 and their COMPLETE lack of class, from now on my second-favorite team is whoever is playing Indiana.



  16. Azubuike's Bicep
    9:39 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    7- Your “Ricky 3 Stacks” reference shows how long you have been coming to this site, which in itself is pathetic for an IU fan.



  17. Al's IndiCats
    9:41 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Hoo Hoo, I just heard that you have your pet cow Bessy so well trained that the moment you step onto a tree stump, ole Bessy backs straight to you. Good going lil man!



  18. Big Beer Bong
    9:44 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Let’s see, two fairly big programs only separated by the Ohio sewer, er river, and they should play each other? Wow, what a concept! That Pimptino sure is a genius!



  19. HOO HOO
    9:44 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    IU is sooooooo awesome. Just give us the trophy for next year NOW. Look how everyone is scared to play us. We’ll never have to leave Bloomington. IU makes me Crean my pants.



  20. Southern Illinois Cat Fan
    9:48 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Only game that matters to me is the National Championship game. Screw a rivalry game, give me a NC game every year or so and all will be forgotten.



  21. bluefan
    9:49 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Absolutely begging for scraps. They deserve each other. Let ’em play.



  22. Hoss_Cat
    9:54 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    sycophantic? seriously dude? Did you have to search an online thesaurus for that word?



  23. Azubuike's Bicep
    9:55 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    IU can play UK EVERY year if they really wanted to. All they have to do is win in the tournament. IU fans’ claim that UK won’t play IU is essentially saying that IU isn’t going to make it far enough to play Kentucky.



  24. Corey Nichols strikes again
    10:13 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    If you would have done any sort of internet search you would have known that Pitino and Crean have both come out saying it isn’t going to happen next year, which is what your whole “article” speaks to. Corey Nichols: Bringing you yesterday’s news in the most ridiculous(ly poorly written and boring) manner possible! It is somewhat enjoyable at least that Kentucky Sports Radio, the site that claimed #louisvilledoesntexist, seemingly can’t go a whole day without mentioning UofL.



  25. Corey Nichols strikes again
    10:14 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    23. I would be willing to bet that IU will make it further than UK in this years tournament, so shut your mouth



  26. SeoulCat
    10:15 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Good piece, Corey.
    #22, Oh, come off it. Believe it or not, some people actually possess decent vocabularies. If Corey’s posts can help BBN build its collective lexicon without coming off as overly pedantic, then what’s the problem?

    Write away, Corey. Write away.



  27. Bradley
    10:18 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    UK vs UNC of 2012-13? LOL. Yeah 13 NBA players on the court compared to 3. Very similar games indeed.



  28. REAL BLY
    10:20 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    WORST CROWD EVER!!! I’d rather go watch a WNBA game….



  29. Bradley
    10:21 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    IU vs UL in the Little Brothers Bowl.



  30. UK Freshmen
    10:32 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Noel = Vacate.



  31. Participant
    10:34 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Who cares what they do other than continue to watch UK from the sidelines at the NC game?



  32. Loserville vc Loosiers
    10:35 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    24 – It is also somewhat enjoyable that haters come here to throw in their 2 cents about how this site sucks, yet ironically enough, their being here helps keep this site going and has helped it find the success to move into tv shows and other opportunities for Matt and co. Keep giving more hits please. And keep giving us your stupid opinion so we can laugh at you!

    and as for your 25 comment, ha ha ha there’s always next year, just keep on hoping. go ahead and bet that money, then you won’t be able to afford your cigarettes or dip when you don’t win!



  33. tradional expectations
    10:35 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Any NBA news? How bout, wait for it…. Does UK have a football team this season, or did they cancel all their games?



  34. UK Freshmen
    10:36 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    trolls = jealous



  35. booom
    10:45 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    You Kentuckians do realize the reason IU stopped is because UK is too scared to come to Assembly Hall??? Cal knows he’ll have a down year or two and we’ll stomp your freshman in Rupp.

    It’s a shame most of you are just too stupid to get it.

    KEEP UP THE IU PUBLICITY!!!!



  36. booom
    10:47 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Remember when Matt Jones said IU will never be an elite program again? Yeah, I do. Welp, he was wrong… again.



  37. JLivermore
    10:57 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Couldn’t care less who IU plays…if UK simply plays 3 or 4 marquee non-conference games per year, it could be against different teams every year as far as I’m concerned…the only thing the IU rivalry did for us the past 20 years was force us to play a mediocre team most of the time.



  38. CatGrad7072
    11:04 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    17: I heard HOO HOO broke up with Bessie because he had walk too far to kiss her!



  39. Beavis
    11:08 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    booom,,,,,if you were on this site before the NCAA game between IU and UK,,,I said you guys had no shot at winning the game. IF we played in RUPP or Louisville this year,,,you would have no shot again. If you remember the game in Bloomington ( which I hear you dedicated a trophy case to ) we did not play well and TJ did not even show up and you still had to hit a last second three to win. I am sorry,,,I don’t get where all the optimism is coming from. Tell me about your record away from home and remind me again why you think IU is an elite program again. LOL PLEASE Are you Bob Knight is descise ???



  40. Beavis
    11:09 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Bob Knight in disguise. Excuse my French



  41. string music
    11:12 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Can anyone point me to the Indiana Sports Radio website? Didn’t think so. Face it IU fans…You are jealous! That is THE ONLY REASON you are on this site. Have you forgotten that your holier than thou excoach refused to play at Rupp for years? Hell, it was his idea to play at neutral sites. But now that we won’t be playing at your place, it is blasphemy? You guys are either too young to remember Bob(D-bag)Knight or too stupid to see irony.



  42. B Howard
    11:22 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Why is it a problem that UL plays Indiana? I think its a great idea. Calipari goofed up and didn’t keep the UK/IU series going. Bad move. I just don’t get making negative comments against Louisville regarding a potential game with Indiana. UK won’t play so let’s get a new rivalry going.



  43. booom
    11:28 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Sorry, I failed to deliver any real booms. I know that IU is not an elite program to anyone outside the state of IN, I’m such a moron. Yeah, we’ll get some preseason love, but then we’ll lose most games outside of the Assembly High School Gym almost every time, just like we did last year, and our ranking will tank. Keep giving the publicity to IU and I’ll keep coming to your site and giving you hits. Team work!



  44. joker
    11:36 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Sorry, but Corey’s “editorials” are just plain lame. Not well thought out, superficial, uninformed, and just plain wrong.

    Un-friggin-believable.



  45. CincyUK Fan
    11:43 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    #43, until IU reaches an elite 8 or a final 4 they are not elite. They could have done it this past year but who did they run into ? You have a great center, and the rest of the team is overrated. Great at home at that high school arena you have, ill give you that. However last time I checked, IU wont play any tourney games in Bloomington. Overrated, if they get past the sweet 16 next year I will be shocked. 1987 was a long time ago, keep dreaming.



  46. bigcat
    11:58 am May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Isn’t this the same IU team that lost on the road to NEBRASKA? Yet they are going to hang a banner next year? They get a super recruiting class that I didn’t hear about? We are talking about NEBRASKA…. I didn’t even know they played basketball in that state!



  47. BooCat
    12:31 pm May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Corey despite what Matt Jones says about 20 of the same people saying negative things in the comments section well, that may be true…. But the only person saying anything positive about your writing is your mother.



  48. ron
    12:38 pm May 10, 2012 Permalink

    you know he had been talking about this before IU and UK decided not to play? read more?



  49. UKBlue
    1:05 pm May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Why does everyone have such a heart on for IU? Who the F cares what IU or UL are doing !! With the way things are going, UL might be playing all their games in front of the Yum Center on Main Street once the Yum Center gets foreclosed on & the people at IU are too stupid to realize they just totally screwed themselves financially walking away from playing UK.



  50. IWantJust"K"OnTheFootballHelmets
    1:23 pm May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Kentucky has more titles than both of these ‘elite’ programs combined. Neat.



  51. ribin
    3:31 pm May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Let ’em play — hopefully no one gets hurt if IU storms the floor with a win —



  52. Who Cares
    4:24 pm May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Indiana Doesn’t Exist.



  53. Roland
    4:42 pm May 10, 2012 Permalink

    Hoo Hoo’s breath smells of fish