College Football Junkie

A Blog To Share My Tour of College Football

Indiana University

Posted by Strickland on September 15, 2008

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My wife and I had were suppose to take my sister and brother-in-law to Maysfield, KY, to catch a train (and that’s a whole different story, right there!) on a Friday. By doing this for my sister, they were going to put my wife and I up in a hotel close to Cincinnati, OH. That was going to be great. It was going to be great for we could be away from things and be together, and we were going to try to catch a game in Bloomington, IN. That game was going to be our alma mater, Western Kentucky University verses Indiana University. But, things went wrong, and my sister didn’t get to go on her train ride and we just decided that we were not going to go to Bloomington, IN. That was on a Friday, the day before the game and the day of our traveling to Maysfield, KY.

Saturday morning we wake up, and just lay around the house. The kids were playing. My wife was looking at a magazine on the couch. I was just beginning to watch “College Gameday” on ESPN with Kirk Herbstreit, Lee Corso (Lee Corso’s “side job“, and a former coach at IU), and Chris Fowler. Next thing you know, I mentioned to my wife that Indiana was going to play Western Kentucky at noon (EST). It was about 10:15 am (EST). My wife then asked, “You want to go?” I will admit…I was thinking, “There’s no way we can make it.” “Can we financially do this?” “Okay, what is going on here? My wife is suggesting for us to go to a game!”

So, I took the bait and we hurriedly began thinking on how we could get up there to watch a game and began to get ready to leave. Our desire was to leave by 11:00 am, and by the time we got on the interstate is was 11:15 am. Not bad, really. We figured by the time that we left the house, we could make it to the game hopefully mid-way through the 3rd quarter or the whole 4th quarter. We would find a ticket stub on the ground somewhere, get into the game for free, and not have to spend any money getting into the game. It was a pretty good plan.

That didn’t go as plan.

The trip took longer than what we had expected. We knew that we were going to be cutting it close, but basically we were about an hour off in our planning. I found the game on the radio while driving, so I literally listened to the game. Made our way through Louisville, KY, over into the state of Indiana on I-65. Got off the interstate on the Columbus, IN, exit, and went West on Highway 45. Went through the town Gnaw Bone, Indiana (yes, there is a town by that name). Drove through Nashville, IN, where we drove past “The Little Nashville Opry“, where it’s a ‘small step down’ from the famous “Grand Ole Opry” in Nashville, TN, where I’m from. Finally, made our way to Indiana University.

When we got there, we drove around trying to find “Memorial Stadium.” I believe it was “move-in day” at the university. We didn’t see any signs telling you where to go to find certain parts of the school, but it was tough to look for as well because I was rushed with the time and people were behind me in their cars. We found a place to park, and we started walking. We saw the university while we walked, and I noticed that the buildings were all the same grey, white stone. I know that this might sound offensive, and I don’t mean for it to be, but I didn’t expect for the beautiful buildings, and campus, to set the tone of it being “northern.” I know that IU is a Big Ten Conference school, and all these universities are in the northern portion of the United States. But, I just didn’t expect the feeling of being more up north, when in reality I was just in Indiana. I used to live in Louisville, KY, and I’ve been into Indiana because I lived there so close to the border. But, it was just different. I guess that is all that I can say…just different. Beautiful, just different than what I was expecting, and I don’t know what I was expecting.

Anyway, the game. Our Hilltoppers from Bowling Green, KY (not from the same place where Bowling Green University is, which is in Bowling Green, OH), came up on the losing side of the game. They lost 31-13 (Here are the stats from the game). Since the game was over with, we did get to the stadium, and got to walk on the field. They are building onto the stadium to make it a “horse shoe”. They have also painted/renovated that stadium to give it a new look. Some notable IU players and coaches are: Antwaan Randle El, Lee Corso, Sam Wyche, and Terry Hoeppner.

But, it was fun to do the trip and drive spontaneous a little bit. I got to visit a Big Ten campus. Got to walk out on the new IU field. Got to go inside Assembly Hall where IU plays basketball (I went inside to try to take some pictures of the prestiges Hall and see the trophies, but I couldn’t get inside the gym because all the doors were locked to a “closed practice”.). Got to see the campus. And, it was a state that both of my kids have never been to. I didn’t actually watch the game, but I did listen to it on the radio…doesn’t that count toward my goal?

Here is a video of “the walk” that the team, and fans, do before the home football game.

Here is a video of the “Marching Hundred“, which is the marching band of IU. Notice in these videos, the inside of the IU football field then verses now, the inside of Assembly Hall that I didn’t get to go into, and the campus buildings that I was trying to talk about. Wished I got to see the “Marching Hundred” on the field personally.

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One Response to “Indiana University”

  1. omotom said

    Hey, I saw the IU and had to stop by here to give a shout out.

    OK, I read what you were saying about IU’s campus and will try to give you a little more information on the campus of IU Bloomington. Indeed, Bloomington and IU share themselves selflessly with one another. I am an EKU graduate and moved to Bloomington in 2005, and found that there are very different feelings of student development and culture compared to UK and the Big Blue state of Kentucky. It is a northern type of feel here, namely a heavily Chicago/Indy influence when you talk to people here. However, if you give it time there seems to be a hum of vitality here for the school and the residents. There appears to be this heavily dedicated motivation to push the boundaries on sustainable lifestyle, which is very obvious when you see the recycling projects, the Lotus Fest (a world music festival every Fall), and the integration of diverse culture and city life– all wrapped up in a small town. Indeed, Bloomington has so many ethnic restaurants that it rivals those of much larger cities. Indiana University is a top-notch university. For some, it is the Big Ten school, with Penn State and others falling behind in beauty and education. I received my Master’s at IU and have to say that it is probably not falsified– IU is probably the most beautiful, challenging, and diverse college in the area. Nestled in lush wooded terrain, with hiking and camping just 2-3 miles away. My program in Public Health was ranked 7th in nation for best graduate education from U.S. News and World Report. The School of Journalism and the Kelley School of Business are another huge draw for international students.

    Those white-gray stones you were viewing are limestone. The entire area of Bloomington is noted for their stonework, and limestone is the primary stone of choice for building materials. If you walked down the main street, called Kirkwood, you would have seen the Sample Gates that signifies the entrance to the university proper. Upon entering, you will see some beautiful buildings that house the Administration, Law, and the IMU (Indiana Memorial Union) that display architecture made the campus to be named the 5 most beautiful campuses in the country.

    Believe me, I love the walks through IU and visiting the Kirkwood area for the multitude of restaurants, all within walking distance of campus. It is different, but that difference is what the people of Bloomington love about their community.

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