BYU and Utah are the 2 biggest schools in their state. They have a rivalry for all sports like Iowa and Iowa State do. Plus, they were both mid majors for the longest time.
It looks like I'm in the minority but I actually like the idea of the event. We went with 13 people, a mixture of ISU, UNI, and Iowa fans and had a good time. The basketball wasn't great but its not often you get to watch live basketball when everyone has a rooting interest in one of the games.
I was disappointed but the ISU attendance. I'd bet that Iowa had 2x the amount of ISU fans. I'm guessing the fact that Hilton is 40 miles up the road impacts the ISU attendance but I thought it would be closer to an even split between Iowa and ISU. It definitely wasn't.
The atmosphere wasn't good. But that's what happens when you have 50% of the people not caring about the outcome for each game. It was definitely louder for the Iowa-UNI game...it felt like an exhibition for the ISU-Drake game.
The upside to these games should be an easy win for ISU. If we aren't able to beat UNI or Drake, then we are doing something wrong, not UNI or Drake. You have to schedule those game with someone, so I see no problem keeping a little cash in state and making the game easy for all fans to see, as opposed to scheduling something where we have to go to Name Your College, Ohio.
I was OK with the event. I supported it through ticket purchase/attendance because I think it is important to Des Moines hosting 2nd/3rd round NCAA games in the future.
Saying that, there is no way that a 300 level ticket should cost $50.00.
Here are a few of my observations on the event:
1. The sections behind the basket were mostly empty. Our end was completely empty in the front rows. At least Drake and UNI had 20 or so students in the front rows.
2. The rally towels were cool, but they were hardly used during the games. Obviously, Wells Fargo doesn't have Sports Management graduate students to run around and help the promotions pay off.
3. I didn't see any Drake fans in the upper level, confirming the rumors about rich kids going to Drake.
4. The scoreboard was used horribly. The highlight videos were tiny. They couldn't get the player stats right during the UNI/Iowa game (finally they just stopped trying).
5. Not much team spirit rivalry. I wore my "Not a Hawkeye . . . I-State (logo)" shirt because I thought it was the perfect event for it. I went for both games and I walked around a lot on various levels. Not a single Iowa fan said a disparaging word. What fun is that? Worse, no Cyclone fans commented either. The event lacked the rabidness that I associate with both of our fanbases.
I mentioned this on the other thread, and IMO it it worth repeating.
I think a change needs to be made on the timing of this "tournament" so that it occurs PRIOR to the Iowa vs ISU game. Think about it. If the two teams haven't yet played, there IS incentive and anticipation to watch the other school play as a way to preview/scout the upcoming big game.
i was embarrassed with ISU fan turnout...man as much as we make fun of Iowa bball fans on here, they outnumbered our fans 2 to 1...
Iowa had more fans in the Lower Bowl (taking 1/3 of the side we shared with UNI), but we definitely had many more up in the $25 section.