“Two walls of red, with a game in the middle of it. My ears are still ringing.”
That’s how ESPN college basketball analyst Jay Bilas recalled the atmosphere at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall in 2017, when he called a game involving his alma mater Duke in Bloomington.
Bilas typically makes at least one stop at IU over the course of the college basketball season in connection with a marquee matchup that ESPN picks up. His most recent call at Indiana was when the Hoosiers faced Wisconsin in February.
This week Bilas named his top-5 college basketball venues, and with some of those high profile Bloomington games in mind, he included Indiana’s iconic arena.
“No. 5 would be Assembly Hall at Indiana,” Bilas said in a social media post. “When that place is loaded for a big game, it’s just like a sea of crimson on each side, it’s just fantastic. And with the history and tradition of Assembly Hall, it’s just a wonderful place.”
In a list Purdue fans won’t like, Bilas named Michigan State’s Breslin Center No. 4, Kentucky’s Rupp Arena No. 3, and he said it was a tie between Kansas’ Allen Fieldhouse and Duke’s Cameron Indoor Stadium for the top spot.
Indiana will play at both the Breslin Center and Allen Fieldhouse during the 2022-23 season.
It wouldn’t be a surprise if Bilas returned for the Hoosiers’ home game against North Carolina on Nov. 30.
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