UE News and Notes for Dec. 26, 2012

—UE and the Ford Center closed ticket sales Wednesday due to snow but will resume regular holiday hours (10 a.m.-3 p.m.) on Thursday, the university announced. The ticket office closes at 2 p.m. on Dec. 31, is closed Jan. 1 and returns to regular hours Jan. 2.

—For Christmas, I took a look at Lithuanian big men Egidijus Mockevicius and Rokas Cesnulevicius’ dreams beyond playing basketball. The Aces also returned to practice on Tuesday night following two days off after the Butler game.

—Check out a look at the Missouri Valley Conference from top to bottom as league play begins this weekend with five games across Saturday and Sunday.

—UE will play its third ranked opponent of the season on Saturday after Creighton moved up a spot in both polls this week, to 12th in the USA Today coaches poll and 16th in the Associated Press’ rankings.

—Ahead of that game between the Aces and Bluejays, Omaha World Herald writer Steven Pivovar took a look at UE’s inconsistent play (with information from last week’s MVC coaches teleconference).

—A contributor at The Mid-Majority, a user-generated site which writes about sub-red line schools, published a post Wednesday about last weekend’s UE-Butler game while giving tons of credit to Aces senior Colt Ryan.

—In his latest “Ask The AD” post, UE athletic director John Stanley said he doesn’t see a replacement coming on a national level for the BracketBusters Challenge, which ESPN recently announced will discontinue its current format after this season.

—TopDrawerSoccer.com named a pair of UE men’s players, Faik Hajderovic and Nate Opperman, to its list of top 100 freshmen. The St. Louis native Hajderovic checked in at 58th, and the website listed the Kansas product Opperman at 96th.