Am I becoming a basketball fan?


By Rich Creason | The Times-Post

When our daughter Angi was going to school at Pendleton Heights, she was involved in all kinds of activities.

She ran track and cross country, broadcast the girls basketball games (and some of the away boys games), was in the band and color guard, and other activities.

Since we spent a lot of our time at the high school, be purchased all-sports passes and attended basketball, football and other sports. We continued with our passes for several years even after she graduated.

We began driving all over Ohio when Angi got in track and cross country while attending Ohio Northern. We followed her at away events to many other colleges in the northern half of Ohio.

Susie and I both graduated from Purdue. After we finished school, we attended one basketball game and one football game each year at West Lafayette.

Eventually, Purdue prices became too high for us to go. Luckily, TV made the games closer and cheaper. (Until Peacock entered the picture.)

We started watching Purdue games on TV. Angi got her master’s degree from Michigan, so we started watching those games, also.

Any Big 10 games were added to our list if we weren’t busy doing something else.

We almost always rooted for the real Big 10 teams against the teams that weren’t in the original 10.

A Purdue versus IU game was always a must see whether it was basketball of football, and we had to root against IU if they were playing any real Big 10 team.

Then, our only grandson, Benjamin, started attending Butler.

He was raised in Fort Wayne but because of the pandemic and the ensuing shutdown of almost all school activities, he never attended any sporting events in high schools, or dances, or parties.

Masks were required until his senior year and he never knew most of the other kids because he couldn’t see their faces.

Now, he is attending almost every sports activities his school offers. (He is even taking bus trips to some away games.) He is getting us tickets to some of the Butler basketball games and has forced us to start watching the Big East games because he will call or text us after the games are over to talk to us about the outcome. So, we had to learn about all the other teams in the conference.

Now, we have to know the results, standings and schedule of Georgetown, DePaul, Marquette, Providence, Seton Hall, St. Johns, Villanova, Creighton, Xavier, Connecticut (UCONN), and, of course, Butler.

Unfortunately, like the Big 10, several of the teams are highly ranked. (As of this writing, UConn is No. 3, Marquette is No. 5 and Creighton is No. 12.) This means as they play each other, the lower teams in the conference keep getting beat.

It’s fun watching your team play, but it’s not fun watching them get beat a lot.

Since his parents are in Fort Wayne, and we live between Anderson and Pendleton, we are closer to Butler when Benjamin needs something. By something, I mean a meal, shopping, laundry done, or just spending the weekend away from campus. (Almost every weekend!)

We are learning where all the best eating establishments near Butler are located.

If we bring him back to our house for the weekend, the Hacienda Vieja or Pendleton Pizza King will be our dinner spot.

When he lived in Fort Wayne, he played hockey from age 5 until he left home. He still works at the ice rink whenever he can get home for the weekend. (He will be a bat boy at the Fort Wayne Tincaps when school is out for the summer.)

At least now, we get to watch basketball, which I understand, instead of watching all the hockey games, which I never understood all the rules.

Rich Creason is an award-winning outdoors and travel writer whose work has appeared in local, regional, national and international publications for 40 years. Born in Anderson, he is a graduate of Markleville High School. He lives in South Madison County with his wife, Susie. He may be contacted at [email protected].