News From Terre Haute, Indiana

From the Press Box

October 17, 2010

FROM THE PRESS BOX: Great game by Sycamores, too bad so many missed it

TERRE HAUTE — So what’s the excuse this time?

Indiana State’s football team — who, by the way, were averaging 37.2 points going into Saturday’s game against Missouri State — came into its game against the Bears with a 3-2 record and were fresh off an unholy butt-kicking of Illinois State during the Homecoming Saturnalia that was the 59-24 victory over the Redbirds.

Missouri State came to Terre Haute with tails firmly between legs after suffering a 72-59 loss at Murray State. Every indication was there that it was going to be an entertaining shootout.

Sounds like high time to get that ISU bandwagon rolling! Full steam ahead like a big blue (or in the case of football, black) locomotive filled to the brim with giddy Sycamores fans, right?

Guess again. If Saturday’s “crowd” at Memorial Stadium was any indicator, the ISU bandwagon is akin to a rusted out 1973 Chevy Impala sputtering along Wabash Avenue with Wabash Cannonball looping and skipping on its 8-track.

The grand total in the welcoming committee that greeted the Sycamores’ conquering heroes on Saturday after last week’s victory was 3,194. That counts tickets sold. The real total was more like 2,300. This, on a clear, beautiful blue sky day that God couldn’’t have made more perfect for watching football.

Terre Haute and ISU fans who once again advertised their apathy ought to be ashamed of themselves. Good for those who came, but there should have been a lot more.

I mean, what the heck is going on here? I’m not declaring … I’m asking.

The Covered Bridge Festival? C’mon. It’s been going on for a week and it’s the same nearly every year. Pre-Nationals? They were over by the time ISU’s game kicked off. WIC Day at the Dome? Some of those games were over too.

Oh right. Indiana, Purdue and Notre Dame were at home. Last I checked, none of those universities are in Terre Haute. What happened to supporting the teams in your own hometown?

ISU coach Trent Miles — a Terre Haute native — was asked what his reaction to the low attendance was. He was diplomatic, but direct.

“I don’t know what the reason is for a poor crowd, but we’re going to do battle if there one or 12,000 in there. Our kids rose to the occasion, and I’ll tell you what, as loud as it got, it felt like there was 15,000 in there at the end,” Miles said.

All true, but it doesn’t mean Miles and the rest of ISU’s supporters don’t want to see more butts in seats.

“I feel sorry for the people who are missing these games. You’re making a mistake not coming out here to watch these kids. There’s also something good that the university is putting on, there’s a good environment here, these kids are laying it on the line for you,” Miles said.

Miles cited some reasons for the low turnout. Some of it is legitimate. It is hard to believe the Sycamores are on the cusp on first place in the Missouri Valley Football Conference, but they there are. No one gave it to them, ISU earned it.

“I don’t think people believe yet. Homecoming? It was a good crowd, but it was a fluke, Illinois State didn’t play well. They won against a NAIA school and a Division II school,” Miles said. “But hey, these kids are winners and they’re proving it each week. You’re missing good football, you’re missing a good time.”

Miles said it’s vital not only for the ISU community to support football, but Terre Haute and the Wabash Valley as well.

“We have a good university, we have a good administration, but we can’t count on thousands of alums coming back for games. It’s just not going to happen. We need the Terre Haute community out and involved and supporting us also. You need to buy in, we can be special,” Miles pleaded.

“We wear that WV on the back of our helmets for the Wabash Valley. We want to the Wabash Valley to support these young men. They need to get out here and see that we have something special going,” he added.

Being a native Hautean, Miles knows this community can support the Sycamores. Its done it before.

“I’ve been in this stadium as a ballboy where there were 16,000 people here. I played in there when there were a lot of people. They need to be here now because they’re missing out on something special,” Miles said.

The excuses for not going to games are tired. I’m sure I’ll get the usual e-mails — Beanie Cooper did this in the early 80s, Dennis Raetz did that in the early 90s, the school doesn’t care about the community, the community doesn’t care about the school, et cetera, ad nauseum.

Who cares? Virtually none of it has any relevance to the present-day. Most of the slights ISU fans and Hauteans come up with to not support their hometown team happened a decade to a quarter-century ago … or more. That’s a long time to hold a grudge.

For too many years I’ve heard that support would be forthcoming when there was a winner on the field. Based on Saturday’s turnout, it appears that was an empty promise. ISU is finally giving people the winner they want. Not only that, but a winner that’s entertaining to watch and is a great rags-to-riches story.

 “I’m going to be on it. We’ll give [reluctant fans] this week, because we’re going on the road, but the next week [when ISU hosts South Dakota State], if I have to shake and rattle people to get them out here, they’ll get out here. People are going to start believing.”

I hope so. But I’ll believe when I see it.

Todd Golden is sports editor of the Tribune-Star. He can be reached at (812) 231-4272 or todd.golden@tribstar.com. Please check out Golden’s Down In The Valley blog at blogs.tribstar.com/downinthevalley.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
From the Press Box
  • FROM THE PRESS BOX: Fair or unfair, ISU football most vulnerable to NCAA change

    It just doesn’t seem fair.
    Just when you think Indiana State football has achieved stability and a sense of calm, forces are ranged around it that continue to make it the most vulnerable sport offered at ISU.

    July 26, 2014

  • Todd Golden: Bigelow part of Action Track’s lifeblood

    Many things have changed since the Terre Haute Action Track opened in 1952, but the one constant is dirt.

    July 18, 2014

  • From the Press Box: Simple sports pleasures are best

    Andy Amey is the undisputed king of vacation columns in the Tribune-Star’s annals. I just returned from vacation, and while there were certainly tales to tell, I’m left with fond memories of simple sports pleasures.
    My family and I spent an extended weekend in Kansas City? Why? Why not? Truthfully, it was close, there’s a lot to do there, and we didn’t want the headache and expense of a long-haul vacation. We had a great time.

    July 8, 2014

  • SPT 030914 ODUM FILE.jpg Steady success: ISU continued to climb ladder with one of its best overall seasons ever

    First of all, if you’re an Indiana State fan, stand up and applaud. The Sycamores collectively went where only one Sycamore athletic department went before in 2013-14. ISU finished second in the Missouri Valley Conference All-Sports Trophy standings. ISU recorded a score of 3.538, its highest in school history.

    June 25, 2014 6 Photos

  • FROM THE PRESS BOX: Appeal of World Cup is communal

    Columnist explains appeal of World Cup.

    June 21, 2014

  • Todd Golden: Indy 500 book is intriguing look into an important era

    Doing the job I do, I get my share of books sent to me at the office. I hate to admit it, but a lot of them cross my eye for a moment, and like anyone else, if the subject matter doesn’t interest me, I don’t open it.

    June 13, 2014

  • SPT 053114 MITCH HANNAHS.jpg FROM THE PRESS BOX: Hannahs strikes pitch perfect no-excuse, no-apology tone

    ISU coach Mitch Hannahs strikes pitch perfect no-excuse, no-apology tone.

    May 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Todd Golden: Good times for ISU athletics

    I wish I had a time machine. Would I use it to correct some wrongs in my life or witness some important events in history? Sure, but that’s not what’s on my mind this instant. I’d love to go forward in time to see how the state of Indiana State’s athletic department from the present is perceived in the future.

    May 28, 2014

  • From the Press Box: Indiana lacking killer instinct against Wizards

    After Indiana eeked out a seven-game series win over Atlanta, I opined that I thought the Pacers could only truly declare themselves “back” if they took care of an emerging, but still young, Washington team in six games or less.
    After a rousing Game 4 comeback in Washington on Sunday, it appeared the Pacers were ready to do just that. Leading 3-1 in the series, the Wizards limped into Indianapolis on Tuesday and seemed ripe to be closed out by the invigorated Pacers.

    May 14, 2014

  • Todd Golden: Elite athletes? TH bows to no one

    Maybe instead of a new swimming complex, Terre Haute ought to built itself an ice rink. I mean no disrespect to swimming, but ice hockey is the only sport that Terre Haute can’t unequivocally claim an elite athlete in.

    April 23, 2014

  • SPT 101406 WALTMAN PRACTIC.jpg TODD GOLDEN: Waltman's integrity helped him rise to the top

    When I began to think about former Indiana State coach Royce Waltman — and I’ve thought about him a lot in recent months as the ravages of a stroke and cancer robbed us of his presence — I thought to myself “what can I print?”
    Waltman was many things. Blunt, plain-spoken, unfiltered? All of the above and more. Every Indiana State fan saw Waltman in action … and I had a front row seat for three years right next to him on press row.

    April 8, 2014 3 Photos 1 Story

  • SPT 040514 COACH HANNAHS.jpg FROM THE PRESS BOX: Missouri Valley is tough — ISU making it tougher

    For those who measure the quality of a conference by their place in the Ratings Percentage Index, it was a tough year for the Missouri Valley Conference and its marquee sport: men’s basketball.
    The MVC was 11th in conference RPI and took all manner of criticism when Wichita State ran the MVC table for a perfect 18-0 season. The fingers that pointed at the league for fielding a weak challenge to the Shockers’ dominance were many.

    April 5, 2014 2 Photos

  • TODD GOLDEN: ISU's no-excuses approach for real

    If you were to ask me what the drawback of covering Indiana State baseball is? I’d be hard-pressed to name very much.

    March 29, 2014

  • SPT 030914 ODUM BAKER.jpg Todd Golden: Sycamores ran with the best

    It’s hard to run with Secretariat. Secretariat, for the uninitiated, won horse racing’s Triple Crown in 1973 and famously stormed to victory in the Belmont Stakes by an unfathomable 31 lengths. Secretariat is widely considered to be the greatest thoroughbred of all time, and his Belmont performance is one of sports’ all-time greatest moments. In Missouri Valley Conference terms, Wichita State is Secretariat.

    March 10, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT 030814 ODUM GRAB.jpg FROM THE PRESS BOX: Odum rises to WSU challenge

    When you’re getting ready to play the No. 2 team in the country — the undefeated No. 2 team in the country and the best Missouri Valley Conference team in a generation — the unwritten rule says you’re not supposed to rile them. That you’re not supposed to poke the hornet’s nest.

    March 9, 2014 2 Photos 2 Stories

  • MBBMock_packagephoto.jpg From The Press Box: The nuts and bolts of compiling a Mock Selection for the NCAA Tournament

    Before March Madness comes the March mystery of the run-up to Selection Sunday.

    February 17, 2014 3 Photos 1 Link

  • SPT 020514 ISU FANS STAND.jpg From the Press Box: Loss couldn’t ruin great day for ISU, Terre Haute

    When I write, and when I can, I like to give myself a bit of time to soak in what I’m going to write about. After Indiana State’s 65-58 loss to No. 4 Wichita State on Wednesday, I went home, had a bite to eat and pondered what I thought the night was all about.
    I knew ISU’s disappointment cut deep. Really deep. A cruel reality of sports is that losses linger on in the memory with greater resonance than wins often do. Given the shots that rattled out, fell short and missed the mark in the final five minutes, this is a defeat that will, sadly, dog the Sycamores tonight, tomorrow and 20 years from now.

    February 6, 2014 2 Photos

  • FROM THE PRESS BOX: Little to lose, a lot to gain for Indiana State

    It’s hard not to get excited about today’s Missouri Valley Conference summit meeting between co-leaders Indiana State and Wichita State. Who wouldn’t be?

    January 17, 2014

  • From the Press Box: I’ve seen the enemy … and it’s the double bonus

    I’ve seen the enemy.
    I’ve seen it turn the game of basketball from one of exciting flow into a nonstop parade of tedium. I’ve seen it morph hundreds of what would-be thrilling, last-minute, end-to-end conclusions into foul shooting exhibitions that suck the life out of a gym or arena near you.
    It’s the double bonus. It’s a scourge, one that is often overlooked when ideas on how to make the game more entertaining or to speed the game up are put forth.

    January 3, 2014

  • tsgolden From The Press Box: If ISU figures out defense, look out

    The Great Alaska Shootout is not going to provide the Great RPI Bump that Indiana State’s participation in last year’s Diamond Head Classic provided.

    December 1, 2013 1 Photo

  • From the Press Box: Damage is done for ISU football

    As a parent and a professional, there’s a bit of advice I’ve tried to pass along that I’ve found to be true.
    No matter what you happen to be doing — whether it be job performance or just your own personal behavior — you can do the right thing for a period of time, even the vast majority of the time, but all it takes is one slip and the goodwill you’ve built up can be gone in one fell swoop.
     

    November 24, 2013

  • TODD GOLDEN: Munn, Odum want to make paper accomplishment a real one

    When it comes to Missouri Valley Conference Media Day, it has historically been a kick in the gut for Indiana State's basketball teams.
    But not this year. For the first time since formal MVC preseason polls began in the mid-1980s, the Sycamores rule the MVC roost.

    October 31, 2013

  • tsgolden TODD GOLDEN: Colts fans paid Manning ultimate tribute

    Peyton Manning’s return to Indianapolis was many things — the return of a beloved prodigal son, a battle of Colts’ No. 1-draft-pick quarterbacks and last, but not least, the visit from one of the AFC’s last reminaing undefeated teams — but most of all, it could have been a battle for the Colts’ fans soul.

    October 21, 2013 1 Photo

  • From The Press Box: ISU in top 2 of top-heavy MVC

    Change doesn’t often come to Missouri Valley Conference basketball. Until this season, it had endured with the same 10 members since the mid-1990s. But the reality of conference realignment finally hit the MVC where it lived last spring as Creighton departed for the new Big East Conference. The MVC responded by adding Loyola University.

    October 13, 2013

  • USDvISfb-84468.jpg FROM THE PRESS BOX: Sycamores shocked by 1-5 start to season

    It was a play that not only symbolized Indiana State’s 17-14 loss at South Dakota on Saturday, but perhaps the Sycamores’ entire season.
    Down three with 6:39 left in the fourth quarter, ISU faced third-and-9 from its own 39. ISU ran Shakir Bell to the left and the senior standout had daylight.

    October 12, 2013 1 Photo

  • SPT 091513 GRIMES PICK.jpg From The Press Box: An avoidable loss

    It couldn’t last forever.

    September 15, 2013 3 Photos

  • From The Press Box: Colts dodge bullets ... it's what they do

    Just a few minutes into the second quarter, it seemed Colts fans could kick back and enjoy a Sunday on Easy Street.

    September 9, 2013

  • SPT 090713 SANFORD HAZELL.jpg FROM THE PRESS BOX: Indiana State proves plenty in 20-14 loss at Purdue

    No moral victories?
    Bull. Its always been bull and it will always be bull. The Sycamores proved again that moral victories are very real, and can be very rewarding.
    All they needed to do to prove it was to look at the stunned faces of the Purdue faithful at Ross-Ade Stadium in the Sycamores’ near-miss 20-14 loss to Purdue.

    September 8, 2013 4 Photos

  • From the Press Box: Stipends? No. Off-field income? Oh yeah, bring it on

    The war flags have been raised. The trumpets have sounded.
    With the Johnny Manziel autograph hullabaloo and the ongoing Ed O’Bannon suit against the NCAA for using his likeness as background, many have rallied to the battle standard of stipends as a means of compensating NCAA athletes who are allegedly being exploited for income by their universities.
    This rally cry has a particular resonance among those in my profession, many of whom dislike the current system, and who detest the NCAA with a virulent passion.

    August 15, 2013

  • TODD GOLDEN: Golf ... the beast within?

    Like many sports fans, my interest in professional golf is confined to the four major tournaments. Many prefer the Masters, some like the back-to-roots British Open, but I’ve always liked the U.S. Open the best.

    June 16, 2013

Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Raw: Earthquake Rocks Mexico's Gulf Coast Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Judge OKs Record-setting $2B Sale of Clipper Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Mother of 2 Makes NFL Cheerleading Squad at 40 Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Today in History for July 29th Fox Dons 'Bondage Strap' Skirt at Comic-Con Raw: Airstrike Shatters Fragile Calm in Gaza
NDN Video
Weird 'Wakudoki' Dance Launches Promotional Competition Two women barely avoid being hit by train Chris Pratt Adorably Surprises Kids at a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Screening Chapter Two: Designing for Naomi Watts NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show' Robin Wright Can Dance! (WATCH) She's Back! See Paris Hilton's New Carl's Jr. Ad Big Weekend For Atlanta Braves In Cooperstown - @TheBuzzeronFox Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director What's Got Jack Black Freaking Out at Comic-Con? Doctors Remove 232 Teeth From Teen's Mouth
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity