Cards Meet Hoosiers in the Gahhhhhden

dunikcardThough it is a circuitous route, most often made longer by a side trip for those biscuits and that to-die-for apple butter in Brown County, the drive from Louisville to Bloomington is only 105 miles.

Whereas, it’s 650 miles as the crow flies — 766 by car — between the home of Rick Pitino’s Cardinals and the coach’s beloved Madison Square Garden.

Which is to say, it’s neat that U of L and IU are battling tonight in NY, NY, at the world’s most famous arena, to benefit the Jimmy V Foundation.

But, why oh why aren’t these teams meeting on a regular basis here in Kentuckiana?

They did in the 80s, when the Cards got the better of the Hoosiers in 4 of 5 meetings. Having attended most of those, I can vouch that beating Bobby Knight never failed to be fun. The last time the schools played was 2003, another Cardinal W, though IU leads the all-time series, 10-6.

This is a series that should be annual and in perpetuity.

* * * * *

Louisville’s a 9 1/2 point favorite tonight.

Don’t expect the game to tip until 9:30 or 9:45. Villanova meets Illinois on the undercard.

In case you’ve developed some toxic reaction to Dickie V through the years,1 have your ear plugs and antidote handy. I’m advised he’ll be bellowing behind the mic during the contest about this and that and the other and on occasion perhaps but rarely the action unfolding before him.

* * * * *

In advance of tonight’s tilt, I perused the IU media guide.

I was most interested in checking out who the famously undefeated ’76 national champs played during that season outside of the Big Ten schedule.

The Hoosiers non-conference slate included nary a directional school walkover. They played three Top 20 schools, opening the year with a W over #2, and also besting UK and St. John’s. The Hoosiers also bested Florida State, Notre Dame, Georgia, Virginia Tech, Columbia and Manhattan.

What I’d forgotten is who they beat in the NCAA to win the title. This was before seeding.

In order, they routed #17 St. John’s again, 90-70, then #6 Alabama, 74-69, followed by #2 Marquette in the regional final, 65-56.

They conquered #5 UCLA again in the national semis, 65-51, capturing the crown, completing the hat trick against #9 Michigan, 86-68.

While loathe to give any credit to the most duplicitous cur in the history of college hoops — that would be Bobby Knight — he could coach once upon a time. And the ’76 champs remain worthy of all the praise they’ve received through the decades.

As a Cardinal fan, I’m hoping the Hoosiers don’t somehow tap into that transcendent zeitgeist tonight.

— Seedy K

10 thoughts on “Cards Meet Hoosiers in the Gahhhhhden

  1. I have checked this article twice, just like Santa and his Christmas list, and I see nary a mention of your Ky Wildcats.

    Are you sick or something? Or did someone edit this?

    Let us know, Ol’ Blew…….

  2. Oopppss you slipped it right by me….you mentioned that the Hoo’s beat your Cayuts in 1976. I didn’t think you could write something with a mention of your fave’s……I was right!

  3. Went to the Cards/IU game in Bloomington in 1984. One of my best friends was in school there at the time, so he scored us some great seats, and we showed up wearing our red sweatshirts. Our time won in a very good game, but all I really remember was getting pelted by pop corn boxes most of the time by irate Hoosier fans, upset that we’d even been let into the building, much less given decent seats.

    That was the highlight of the year, as Milt broke his foot soon after (maybe even the next game?), and we were pretty much NIT bound from that point on.

    And JG – the constant digs about Seedy K and UK got old about two years ago.

  4. Matthew, I too was at that very game, having scored great seats, in the second row of permanent seats, midcourt. I think I’ve told this story, but use your comment as an excuse to tell it again. Every time, I mean every time, Milt Wagner touched the ball, the guy behind me yelled, “Put some mustard on that hot dog.” I never responded, but, during the last timeout, ran up to the concession stand and got a couple packets of mustard. Which I turned and silently handed to him at the final buzzer.

  5. Excellent comeback!

    It was a great game, and my first time in Assembly Hall. I was just a sophomore at UofL, and had never been to another college basketball arena (except for Knights Hall @ Bellarmine), so I was a little surprised at how small the place was compared to Freedom Hall.

    A picture of my buddies and I were on the front page of the CJ Metro section the next day. Good times, baby. Good times.

  6. Matthew….I am so sorry you are tired of my exemplary efforts to out Seedy and his UbaK fetish. I have undergone extensive therapy at CDK’s expense to attempt to overcome my compulsion to insure that the entire world is aware that he is a wildcat in cardinal clothing. It is clear to everyone, including you, that such therapeutic efforts are not working.

    However, there is nothing you could do or say short of breaking all of my fingers that can possibly discourage me in my quest. I recommend that you skip over my comments and let the doctors and their drugs perform their intended jobs. That is our only hope.

    Maybe someday I can focus on something other than Charles’ back-stabbin my Cards as he relishes the glory of all things Blew…but that time is not now…

    Sorry to ruin your day….

  7. Those crowd reactions in Assembly Hall were largely the result of students being permitted to have good and widely dispersed seats. As a student during the ’75 season I spent $12 to get 12 home games, 4 seats down low, 4 seats high up, and 4 seats in the middle. Students were spread out all over the Hall, so any visitor was unprotected from their cheers and insults. My wife-to-be attended her last game when a few young Purdue fans sat behind us and yelled scatological taunts throughout the game directly into her ears. It was a crazy environment. The next year – the undefeated one – we got 9 tickets for $12 and for ’77 just 6 tickets for $12. Clearly it was the re-beginning of big time basketball in Bloomington. And how great it was!

  8. Redstein, U of L students got in games free in the 70s. Perhaps longer, but I had season tickets after graduation. All you had to do was flash Harry Bockman your ID.

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