By Barbara Springer

One thing from Rick Pitino’s press conference on Friday really jumped out at me.  He commented that Louisville basketball fans don’t yet have the same mindset that more established Big East fans have developed: a thought process that automatically includes vacation time in New York for the Big East Tournament.

Probably so, and that is probably because we have not been in the conference long enough.

  • And because our team’s success in that tournament has not been stellar.
  • The word has always been that tickets are hard to come by.
  • Add in the expense of a trip to NYC, and we simply fail to put those dates on our post-season travel calendar.

But a change is coming, Coach, I feel sure.  Make us want it.  Carry us with you.  2009 was oh so sweet.

We were of that specific mindset with our football team’s numerous trips to bowl games, that is, until the Kragthorpe era squelched our anticipation of postseason road trips. We were so into that mindset that we automatically, if subconsciously, thought that, yes, there is all the Christmas and New Year’s hubbub to wrap around a bowl game, somewhere in that part of our calendars.  No matter where, we were going.  Even a luxurious RV was parked outside the entrance to PCJS for a raffle to ride in the RV to a bowl game.  An assumption we had come to expect.

Will U of L get to NYC in March for the BE tournament?  No doubt.  Will we go further than a game or two?  Maybe.

Will we all drive/fly/hopscotch to the Big Apple in another of our exciting Cardinal Caravans?  Only more successful seasons than we have had lately will determine that.

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7 thoughts on “Big East tourney travel will have to wait”
  1. Great article Ms. Springer! (can’t call a previous SHS English teacher Barbara to save my life!! hahaha). Not sure why why Ricky P. thinks it’s “easy” to travel to NY with today’s economic challenges most of us face. The majority of us can’t afford $300 a night for hotel rooms (or at least safe hotels) nor the $100+ ticket prices for the games. Bowl games in St. Petersburg or Nashville or even Miami are far more affordable than a trip to NYC. I’m as die-hard as they come as far a Cardinal support but my $$ only stretch so far Rick. I cheer as loud as I can through the TV as it is. (YUM season tickets are even over my budget level). But as always, C.A.R.D.S! GO CARDS!!!!

  2. Glad you checked in, Double J. And I agree. Also, with all the success of the numerous other teams in other Cardinal sports, there is just so much time to go around. But we have really enjoyed following the Cards to away games and delighted to see all the UofL flags on the cars, whether south- or west- or northbound. A trip eastbound will be a challenge but one I feel sure the Observer will not be able to resist. Go Cards!

  3. My wife and I travel quite a bit to see the Cards. But even with the added incentive of a son living in Manhatten we have passed on the BE. It is just too darned expensive.

    We went to St. Pete flying AirTran from Indy for $500 for the two of us. We found a nice two bedroom suite on the beach which we shared with another couple and our share for two nights was about $150. That’s about what just the BE tickets would cost. Assuming the food costs even (not likely but…) that means if we walk to NY and sleep outside in Central Park the two are a push.

    1. Well said. Just have to wonder how many will continue to pay $$$ for Yum tickets AND premium seating at PJCS AND travel to far away places, such as Hawaii (or Puerto Rico?). Then again, maybe I am selling Cards fans short. Give us a few years of real success in BE and maybe NYC won’t seem so far away.

  4. Back in the days of CUSA…conference trips were doable, not that bad financially and a great time. Excursions to Birmingham, St. Louis, Cincinnati were a blast. When Louisville hosted the events…even better.

    Enter the BIG EAST. Always the same…MSG for the men and the XL Center in Hartford, CT. for the women. I may be in a decided minority here…but I’d like to see the “rotating” conference tournament philosophy enacted for the BIG EAST.

    Neutral sites might be the way to go. Cleveland, Nashville, St. Louis or Charlotte don’t sound too bad.

    The women are entertaining the idea. Can the men get past the tradition and stranglehold that the original members of the BIG EAST have applied to keeping the site in New York, New York?

    Stranger things have happened. I remain hopeful. Maybe the stranglehold the the “original BIG EAST” members have on policy and procedure can eventually be broken.

    For Providence and Villanova to set policy for the rest of the league is ridiculous.

    1. I am all for rotating the tournament. When it came to filling out the NCAA ticket form we checked every venue that was reasonably drivable plus Newark (got to see our son eventually). And of course the Final Four. But with all the donations (UofL only wanted to increase me 56% for the Yum), ticket prices, and the like plus airfare it is getting rather expensive to travel these days.

  5. Sounds good to me. Why not make our shiny new arena a prime venue? On a side note, how many Cards fans do you suppose will travel to TCU games?

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