Should UE beat Eastern Kentucky in Saturday’s 12:30 p.m. CollegeInsider.com Tournament game at the Physical Activities Center, it would mark the first time since 1971 that the program tallied multiple postseason victories.
The Aces won their final College Division title that year and have won single postseason games on three other occasions since — the 1988 National Invitation Tournament, the 1989 NCAA tournament and the 2011 College Basketball Invitational.
That CBI victory also came at the 2,278-seat PAC, located on the University of Southern Indiana’s campus. An announced 1,284 fans attended that day for a 77-70 win over Hofstra.
“I think for the guys who were here a couple years ago, there’s going to be a level of excitement just because of the atmosphere that was in there a couple years ago,” said coach Marty Simmons. “You’re playing in a smaller venue. There aren’t as many fans, but it was very enthusiastic – very loud. I think our guys enjoyed playing in that atmosphere.
“More than anything, our chance to play again in front of our fans and our families is good.”
The Aces practiced Friday at the PAC leading up to Saturday’s game, which will take place in the CIT’s round of 16.
There are gyms around town with larger capacities — North High School recently built a new facility, for example — but certain NCAA regulations such as court size mandate the Aces play in an approved facility such as the PAC when the Ford Center isn’t available.