Ramblings on a Sunday

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E-Villan
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Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby E-Villan » Sun Jan 21, 2018 2:49 pm

Warning..this will be a long post. This also will not imply everything is A-OK in Aces land. If you are bothered by posts longer than a sentence, or the thought that improvements need to be made yesterday, then please don't read. This is NOT a fire Marty post...I think we are all very clear in that regard.

Mercifully, I went to the hockey game last night instead of staying home and watching our beloved coach wet himself again inside Carver Arena. There was a good crowd last night, probably the largest one of the year. The lower bowl was pretty well full, as were the suites, and club seating. The crowd was energetic, and into the game the entire night. Todd Golden would have even liked the Ford Center last night. Why was this? Star Wars Night. Star Wars Night apparently consists of a costume contest, which I would say 30-40 people participated in, a few trivia posts on the jumbo, and the costumed participants go on the ice and clear the chuck a pucks during an intermission...that's pretty much it. Didn't appear to be a lot of costs involved, yet it produced a good crowd. It had no bearing on me going, as I have never seen a Star Wars movie completely. Simple marketing effort that worked.

While leaving the game, I was standing near the memorial display. I grumbled about how sad it was where the program was at. A young man overheard this, and smiled and nodded. We began a conversation, and he is currently a UE student. He admitted he probably goes to more hockey games than Aces games because of the atmosphere. He said Marty is not liked by the students, he comes across as unfriendly to most. He said most students aren't made aware of the games, and don't generally feel welcomed. I took a relative to the ISU game, that is also a student, and I know firsthand that she got mixed messages on how to obtain student tickets. We ended up just getting regular tickets for her, which is what I understand most students who do go do.

Like I said, this isn't going to be a fire Marty rant. There are things the administration needs to do, regardless of who the head coach is. We have discussed some of this before, but we need to seriously improve the game atmosphere whether Marty is waddling around on the sidelines, or someone else.

1. Have the band at every game. No further explanation needed. You want to pipe in some hockey music, fine, but college sports should have a college band.

2. The student section- Yes, there is one, just usually empty. Most of you saw the SIU swim team in action during our game in Carbondale..why not do the same here? Give a sport team, a club or even a fraternity a home game to be in charge of the student section behind the goal. Make it a contest and encourage them to come up with the theme, chants, etc..Give the winning organization a prize at the end of the year. Maybe one game the swim team is behind the goal in swimsuits, the next, maybe it is a fraternity with a bunch of the giant cutout heads. This will greatly enhance the arena, and should go miles into getting students back into supporting the team.

3. The loud section- I have said this before, but designate a section, the corners or the other end area, for the rowdies. Hockey does this with the Asylum, why can't we? Find the old crazy man, or someone who is willing to take that spot, and give them season tickets in return for leading this section during games.

4. The upper bowl - I am not a fan of West Side Night, because I think it is a little divisive, but instead, why not give, yes I said give, free tickets to the upper bowl to communities, high schools or large groups. One night could be Jasper night, or Earle C Clemments Night, etc..Those seats aren't being sold anyway, it will bring more bodies into the FC, which will make the atmosphere better, and just may create new fans among those that attend.

Those are just 4 ideas off the top of my head that the admins can do immediately that don't cost a lot of money to implement, and would greatly enhance our game atmosphere. I am sure you all have many others. Post them enough, and maybe someone will eventually read them.

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Re: Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby Aceup13 » Sun Jan 21, 2018 3:48 pm

As y’all know I am a current student, and the only reason I go to games is because I am from here. I think your points are spot on.

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E-Villan
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Re: Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby E-Villan » Sun Jan 21, 2018 4:18 pm

Aceup,

As a student, what would prevent you from taking these ideas and giving them personally to Mark Spencer, or someone who can get them passed along? You can print them, or claim them as yours..I don't care. I think the student section one really has potential.

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Re: Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby muni cup14 » Sun Jan 21, 2018 7:58 pm

The last time the students got rowdy two of them were escorted
out the door.
Maybe UE could provide transportation for the students.

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Re: Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby Aceup13 » Sun Jan 21, 2018 9:05 pm

E-Villan wrote:Aceup,

As a student, what would prevent you from taking these ideas and giving them personally to Mark Spencer, or someone who can get them passed along? You can print them, or claim them as yours..I don't care. I think the student section one really has potential.


Good question..

I should look into that

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Re: Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby PurpleRain » Sun Jan 21, 2018 11:58 pm

Long time lurker/eavesdropper here, first time poster. Hope no one minds if I add my 2 cents worth of rambles.

I’d fully support a coaching change for many of the reasons and more that others have already stated so won’t bore anyone w/that. I believe it’s the big dog donors who have the most power. I really don’t believe the AD has a lot of say so on it. I do however believe the AD reads this board. Regardless, I’d like to see a new coach who’s a bit “coachable” himself, willing to accept advice and implement the ideas his AD and others suggest. At this point I’d even take a young, unproven guy who shows leadership qualities. An Adam Wing kinda guy although I don’t think even he’d be interested as a newlywed with a baby on the way.

A team who can schedule and maybe even compete w/decent competition and win some Valley games will bring in more fans. Don’t know any other semi-foolproof plan.

UE Students at the games - I love E-Villan’s number 2 idea. They’ve tried to bribe them in the past w/t-shirts, Turoni’s Bucks, and other goodies. We can’t do free food at the games due to Ford Center restrictions. They are planning bus transportation for the next game but that’s been iffy in the past. Lack of communication and wonky pickup times seem to be to blame. Then UE complains that not enough students use the service. Things students have said to me, band members included - we have to pay to park, it’s boring to watch, Marty and Blake suck, I have to study, I hate how the student section is set up, I just sit w/my parents.

Some ideas are nixed by Compliance rules. One example is we can’t just give free tix to students who are potential recruits for any sport. I think it’s like 6th grade and up is prohibited but could be off a bit. I know we once had a hs band from Henderson KY so must be ok if they and their families are invited for a valid “reason”, not just “free tix”.

It’s my understanding that UE must pay the Ford Center for each ticket sold or given away. Not sure of the $ amount but say we give away 500 upper bowl tix - we may owe the venue $1000 regardless of whether the tix get used. (Just guessing $2 per tic, could be much higher?). The Ford Center will not want the extra work of preparing/cleaning the upper deck. I’d bet most of those people will find an empty lower bowl seat to use anyway. Some people will come when it’s free but wouldn’t consider buying a full price tix. And even if it’s free, they won’t return if they think it’s no fun.

If you can’t force UE musicians to show up - invite other groups, ask Adam Wing’s dad to come w/his his trumpet, at the very least pipe in canned music in the lobby before the game.

I’ve been to MVC away games, never to Creighton when they were in tho, and have seen lots of “fun” stuff. Sometimes it seems UE wants to be boring or maybe just lazy. Kinda like “what if we get a new coach who’s worse?”. We’ll never know what works and what doesn’t if we don’t at least give it a try.

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Re: Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby pafan » Mon Jan 22, 2018 6:57 am

PurpleRain wrote:Some ideas are nixed by Compliance rules. One example is we can’t just give free tix to students who are potential recruits for any sport. I think it’s like 6th grade and up is prohibited but could be off a bit. I know we once had a hs band from Henderson KY so must be ok if they and their families are invited for a valid “reason”, not just “free tix”.


The limits on giveaways apply not only to "potential recruits for any sport", but to any kid in 7th grade or higher.

But the NCAA's rules are stupidly complicated, and there's probably an exception inserted for Rick Pitino to buy kids hookers :roll:
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Re: Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby indymoon » Mon Jan 22, 2018 7:26 am

PurpleRain wrote:Long time lurker/eavesdropper here, first time poster. Hope no one minds if I add my 2 cents worth of rambles.

I’d fully support a coaching change for many of the reasons and more that others have already stated so won’t bore anyone w/that. I believe it’s the big dog donors who have the most power. I really don’t believe the AD has a lot of say so on it. I do however believe the AD reads this board. Regardless, I’d like to see a new coach who’s a bit “coachable” himself, willing to accept advice and implement the ideas his AD and others suggest. At this point I’d even take a young, unproven guy who shows leadership qualities. An Adam Wing kinda guy although I don’t think even he’d be interested as a newlywed with a baby on the way.

A team who can schedule and maybe even compete w/decent competition and win some Valley games will bring in more fans. Don’t know any other semi-foolproof plan.

UE Students at the games - I love E-Villan’s number 2 idea. They’ve tried to bribe them in the past w/t-shirts, Turoni’s Bucks, and other goodies. We can’t do free food at the games due to Ford Center restrictions. They are planning bus transportation for the next game but that’s been iffy in the past. Lack of communication and wonky pickup times seem to be to blame. Then UE complains that not enough students use the service. Things students have said to me, band members included - we have to pay to park, it’s boring to watch, Marty and Blake suck, I have to study, I hate how the student section is set up, I just sit w/my parents.

Some ideas are nixed by Compliance rules. One example is we can’t just give free tix to students who are potential recruits for any sport. I think it’s like 6th grade and up is prohibited but could be off a bit. I know we once had a hs band from Henderson KY so must be ok if they and their families are invited for a valid “reason”, not just “free tix”.

It’s my understanding that UE must pay the Ford Center for each ticket sold or given away. Not sure of the $ amount but say we give away 500 upper bowl tix - we may owe the venue $1000 regardless of whether the tix get used. (Just guessing $2 per tic, could be much higher?). The Ford Center will not want the extra work of preparing/cleaning the upper deck. I’d bet most of those people will find an empty lower bowl seat to use anyway. Some people will come when it’s free but wouldn’t consider buying a full price tix. And even if it’s free, they won’t return if they think it’s no fun.

If you can’t force UE musicians to show up - invite other groups, ask Adam Wing’s dad to come w/his his trumpet, at the very least pipe in canned music in the lobby before the game.

I’ve been to MVC away games, never to Creighton when they were in tho, and have seen lots of “fun” stuff. Sometimes it seems UE wants to be boring or maybe just lazy. Kinda like “what if we get a new coach who’s worse?”. We’ll never know what works and what doesn’t if we don’t at least give it a try.


Why in the world would UE have to pay the Ford Center money if more tickets are sold? That doesn't sound right. The Ford Center should want greater attendance to increase concession sales.

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Re: Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby PurpleRain » Mon Jan 22, 2018 9:10 am

pafan wrote:
PurpleRain wrote:Some ideas are nixed by Compliance rules. One example is we can’t just give free tix to students who are potential recruits for any sport. I think it’s like 6th grade and up is prohibited but could be off a bit. I know we once had a hs band from Henderson KY so must be ok if they and their families are invited for a valid “reason”, not just “free tix”.


The limits on giveaways apply not only to "potential recruits for any sport", but to any kid in 7th grade or higher.

But the NCAA's rules are stupidly complicated, and there's probably an exception inserted for Rick Pitino to buy kids hookers :roll:


Thanks for clarifying, pafan.

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Re: Ramblings on a Sunday

Postby Tom Servo » Mon Jan 22, 2018 9:25 am

These are great ideas E-villan and Purple Rain (welcome to the board)

I'm going to probably give away my identity to some of the people at UE posting this stuff but I'm going to share some info I've been told over the years but have kept to myself until now:

1. In regards to the Ford Center ticket fee - Purple Rain is correct. A friend of mine and I met with the former Marketing director and he confirmed that UE pays a fee to the FC for all tickets sold or given away. That's why free tickets won't happen. Also I've talked to others at UE that said they don't want to go there because they are afraid people won't pay the full price ticket down the road. The Evansville Otter effect so to speak (no one ever pays for Otters tickets).

2. The Band - I have written Spencer about this myself and I know this it is out of the Athletics Department's control. 100% on the president to step in and make this happen because its the music dept that is the problem here. Any decent President who has some power would have made this happen years ago.

3. We have also met with others at UE and discussed "County" or "city" days like E-villan suggested. I think that is an excellent idea. They seemed interested in it, but nothing has materialized.

4. A while back (probably about 5 years ago) I met with the ticket person who used to work at UE and mentioned the idea of a "Star Wars" night and they said they didn't want to go there. That person is no longer working at UE - so I don't know if that's changed or not, but it can't hurt. I am a huge Star Wars fan myself (at least the old ones and the newest ones) and I know a lot of people who are too who might go to something like that.

I think all these ideas are great, but I want to share something my Dad said to me after he read all this...I found it interesting and I thought some of you guys might too.

Here in Evansville, IN there are a lot of people who have a very high basketball understanding (at least in their mind they do - a lot of people really do get basketball). They follow IU, Purdue, or UK and watch a lot of games. The problem is when they see UE fumbling around having a guy stand around at the top of the key dribbling the ball, running the clock down, and standing around they want no part of it. When it comes to something like Hockey - no one has any idea how it's played or what the players are doing. No one goes into a hockey game with a preconceived idea of how the game is supposed to be played like they do a basketball game. All they know is, "we scored a goal." They just get into the fights, the atmosphere, and the rowdiness of the whole thing. The Aces games used to have a lot of rowdiness involved. The players were much more emotional during Crews' time and they just played a much more exciting brand of basketball and most importantly they won. Crews always said you had to have substance to get fans to show up here and he was right. People are smart enough basketball wise to see there isn't much substance here. And the worst thing that could have happened was for Marty to win 25 games a couple years ago and have us not get into the NIT. That just validated everyone's thoughts on the lack of substance.

I respect everyone's opinion and I hope everyone continues to post on here whether they want to keep Simmons or want him gone. Like someone else posted - I've changed some of my views and ideas based on some of the good posts on here. But at this point in time, I really think we have to move on, regardless of what happens the rest of the year. I just don't think his philosophies and stubbornness will ever work at this level. He will not make any tweaks or adjustments to anything. And he continues to recruit players who cannot make jump shots. Even though it burns him every single year.

I truly hate to say this and I hate to see it.
Failure is not fatal, but failure to change might be.
- John Wooden


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