Beginning in January, we will launch a new site called KSRU, that will feature college students writing features about UK sports, with an emphasis on some of the secondary sports at the school. Over the course of the rest of December, a few of these students will each be writing posts in this space at 9 am to get accustomed to the process. Therefore you will see a variety of names here in the coming days. We hope you enjoy their work and remember, be nice.
I for one am sick of analyzing the IU debacle (thus the picture of random Maryland fans) – UK lost, Hoosier fans are celebrating in their corn fields, and life goes on. Let’s talk about something more general to the college basketball world and slightly more debatable: the “to storm or not to storm” conundrum.
Obviously, this topic is inspired by the scene we saw after Saturday’s loss in Bloomington, but recently we’ve seen more and more teams rushing their home court after a big win. My question is this: Should a team as historically significant as IU ever storm the court? And, better yet, will it ever happen at Rupp?
Let’s start with the first issue. Indiana has five national championships, 20 Big Ten championships, well over 1600 wins and the last undefeated season in college basketball. They have history and are consistently named as one of the top programs of all time. But thanks to a phone addict named Kelvin Sampson, that historical success has fallen by the wayside, and the Hoosiers have struggled, let’s say, in recent years. Tom Crean, who was handed a vastly depleted team, went 28-66 in his first three seasons in Bloomington.
Then on Saturday, the Hoosiers got their first truly signature win under Crean when they took down the #1-ranked Wildcats. Not only were the Cats the top-ranked team in the country, but Kentucky is also the team that Indiana hates the most, as we’ve learned from some of the fan stories that came out of Bloomington. The scene after the game was joyous for Hoosier fans, raucous, and borderline dangerous: quite the opposite of what IU fans had experienced in the past few years.
Prior to that day, IU fans were shouting out to the basketball world that they could, in fact, beat Kentucky last week because they were a viable program once again and that they should be “respected.” Does storming the court prove the validity of those ideas? Isn’t storming the court historically a way of saying, “We absolutely did not expect to win this game but we sure are excited about it!”?
Or, was this the Hoosiers’ way of saying that they are officially back (whether that claim is well-founded or not)? If UK had three absolutely horrid basketball seasons, I can’t decide if Cats fans would be willing to storm Rupp after beating a top-ranked team.
I may be 18 years old, but I feel like I’m somewhat of an old-fashioned kind of college basketball fan, and therefore, I’m one of those people who thinks Kentucky basketball fans should never storm. Obviously, football is a different story. I jumped the wall after the Tennessee game like we’d just won the national title, just like everyone else did.
But Kentucky basketball? It’s a completely different situation to me. We are an entity completely separate from nearly everything else and we are the kings of college basketball. Shouldn’t we expect to win, literally, every game on our own home court?
So what do you guys think? Will we ever see Rupp’s court crowded with over-excited fans celebrating a particularly spectacular UK win? Or, given several years of bad losses and an absence of top players (I realize this is a hypothetical situation and one that is not expected under Calipari), would UK fans be tempted to storm the court after a signature win?