Road Trip Saturday Part 1A
This is the first installment of the road trip Saturday blog for the 2017-18 season (even though this actually took place in the summer before the season starts).
Twice each year I make the journey from Maryland to Indiana for college in August, then back to Maryland in May. This time I was going out to the Hoosier state, and I decided to make a few college basketball related stops along the way. The first stop I made was in Morgantown West Virginia home of the West Virginia University Mountaineers of the Big 12 conference. I had been to Morgantown once before; actually on my original trip out to Valparaiso to begin my freshman year. However, during that trip I only saw the WVU coliseum from a distance on the highway. On this trip I had a little bit more time, so I decided to see if I could get in. The WVU Coliseum has three entrances: Blue, Gold, and Country Roads. When I parked I first tried the Blue entrance which was locked. I then preceded to walk around to the back by the country roads entrance in which a door was propped open. I walked across the concourse and into the main part of the building. This is always a special moment when you get your first glimpse walking into a new arena. It was pretty cool walking into the building. I took in the final four banners, the Jerry West Banner, and the WV logo on the court. After doing a brief periscope I was in the main concourse getting ready to leave when I was a staircase that led down below, and I decided I might was well see if I can get a level lower to see from there. I took it, and it lead all the way down to the court. There I was standing in the tunnel of the WVU Coliseum. There were a few volleyball players doing individual practice on the other end of the floor. I thought to myself I’ve gotten all the way here why not walk on the court. I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to do something like this again, so I did. I only went along the baseline, but briefly stepped inside the playing lines. It was one of the coolest experiences I’ve had in a college basketball arena. To be able to not only get into, but walk on the same court that so many legendary hall of fame players and coaches have roamed, and so many iconic games, and number one ranked upsets have taken place on it was a surreal experience. After that I showed myself out only to in the parking lot be approached by a father and son pair of Rutgers fans asking how I got in, so I did what any college basketball super fan would do; I directed them to the country road entrance, and said “it’s pretty incredible”.
Image Courtesy of West Virginia Athletics.