Posted on 13. Dec, 2009 by in All, NCAA Basketball.

 
Crosstown Shootout 2009- UC-XU

shootout-logo Forty minutes of basketball was not enough as ten extra minutes (two overtimes) was needed to decide the 2009 Skyline Chili Crosstown shootout between the University of Cincinnati Bearcats and the Xavier Musketeers.  These two teams have squaring off against one another since 1928, but this was the first time the game was decided in double overtime.  Emotions were running high as Xavier won 83-79.

Separated by only three miles, these two Cincinnati colleges meet up for one of the top rivalries in the country.  I will believe Duke and North Carolina might be better, but there may not be another rivalry that is so intense.  Houses are divided, friends stop talking as bragging rights are up for grabs each year.  I have been lucky enough to be on the bench for eight shootouts and attend at least eight others in the stands, and this one tonight ranks up there as one of the best.

Cintas Center

Cintas Center

Whether the game is at the Cintas Center on Xavier’s campus, or Fifth Thirds Arena at UC, the atmosphere always turns electric and intense.  I could be biased, but I have always felt things were worse at Xavier.  I will never forget some years ago standing next to Coach Bob Huggins DURING the National Anthem, and having the Xavier students chant, “F*@K UC.”  After postgame calls to the Xavier administration, which they denied the incident, we found the truck copy game tape where you can hear it clear as day.  I will also never forget a few Xavier students throwing rubber penises out our bench, and also hitting our assistant coaches son in the head with a hot dog.

The emotions were again high during this game as play was stopped twice for double technical fouls and an intentional foul.  Members from both teams were “hot” as they attempted to charge the others, but were wisely held back.  With seven minutes to go in the half Rashad Bishop of UC seemed to have “lost his mind” trying to race off the UC bench.  It also appeared the UC Strength coach got into it with a photographer who was trying to get into the Bearcat huddle.

Xavier started the game up 12-4, but went on a huge scoring drought to see them fall down 17-12 with under eight minutes left in the game.  The would again fight back and take a halftime lead.  Denota Vaughn of Cincinnati once again found himself scoreless in the first half of play.

I couldn’t help but notice Xavier coach Chris Mack doing his best “St. Joseph Owl impression” to try to get the fans up and into the game.  It seemed to work at times as Cincinnati missed a ton of free throws down the stretch and throughout both overtimes.

Heading into second OT

Heading into second OT

I do need to add that I was VERY upset with the pregame coverage of game this year.  It seemed the game was overshadowed by the Bengals, UC Football or whatever else is in the news.  I remember the day when the local paper had pages on this event, TV stations did specials on the day of the game and the chili luncheon was a huge deal.  Now the game is on ESPNU on a Sunday night…Get this game back to where it belongs!!

Again, I apologize if some of the following pictures are bad, but the lighting mixed in with my seats made it hard to capture everything.  Would love to hear your opinion on the Crosstown Shootout and some of the best college basketball rivalries in the country. Please email me at Corey@coreybrinn.com or click on the comments below.

towel-waving-before-tip

The Cintas Center was loud at tip off as fans all waved their free Skyline Rally Towels that they received when walking in the door.  Also a Xavier tradition is to remain standing and cheering until XU scores their first basket.

The best radio crew, Mo, Dan, Chuck

The best radio crew, Mo, Dan, Chuck

New location for the Championship banners this season, now hanging from rafters and not on wall

New location for the Championship banners this season, now hanging from rafters and not on wall

What the heck is this blob again?

What the heck is this blob again?

bad pic, but UC Head Baseball coach Brian Cleary in pink...seated next to him on right is former UC assistant baseball coach Brad Meador

bad pic, but UC Head Baseball coach Brian Cleary in pink...seated next to him on right is former UC assistant baseball coach Brad Meador

concourse-hall-of-fame-2concourse-hall-of-fameconcourse-hall-of-fame-3

Pictured above is the Xavier Athletic Hall of Fame which is located on the concourse at the Cintas Center.  I think it is a great addition and very cool for all fans to see.  The Cintas Center seems smaller every time I visit it. The concourses are tiny and it is hard to find bathrooms there.  Just don’t get the feel of a major arena, but it is nice and cozy for events.

Who doesn't like a Giant Cheese Coney?

Who doesn't like a Giant Cheese Coney?

Or how about a live cheese coney shooting free throws?

Or how about a live cheese coney shooting free throws?

Scoreboard seems old and outdated

Scoreboard seems old and outdated

Another reason for my book of why not to drink beer...

Another reason for my book of why not to drink beer...

Student Section

Student Section

I have already briefly touched on my thoughts of the Xavier Student Section.  Although I will never forget them for what they did during the National Anthem, or things that they threw out our bench, they do have their moments. They are usually loud and really into the game. I feel there placement right next to the visiting bench could be trouble.  I also have to give any student that would paint their entire bodies blue some credit. I know I would never do it.  I also remember some years ago when the students rushed the floor after winning a game and by hugging and jumping on the players, the blue paint came off some of the students are ruined the teams grey uniforms.  Early in the first half I heard the XU students chanting, “Brian Kelly.”  A UC fan seated near me yelled back, “At least we have football!”  Good point…

UC-XU Dance Teams

UC-XU Dance Teams

The Xavier and Cincinnati Players were not getting a long on the court in the first half, but at least the two schools dance teams did at halftime, participating in a routine together.  I do have to say it was very poor that the UC Cheerleaders and Bearcat mascot were not in the Cintas Center for this game.  I asked around about why this was, and my friend Bobby told me that they were not “invited by Xavier and it was not in the spirit of the game,” to leave them out. Very very poor on Xavier’s account and would like to hear an explanation behind it. There is nothing better than seeing the two schools mascots going at it at center court during a timeout.

Ibrahim Thomas in the middle

Ibrahima Thomas in the middle

Ibrahima Thomas, a transfer from Oklahoma State made his Bearcat debut early in the first half.  To be quite honest, he seemed lost out there and had no place in this game. His first shot was an air ball from three, his second shot hit the backboard but missed the rim, but his third shot was a clean dunk threw the net.

Officials visited the monitors quite a few times

Officials visited the monitors quite a few times

Xavier player laying hurt

Xavier player laying hurt

Fight number two of the first half

Fight number two of the first half

DOBO Chris Goggin being looked at

DOBO Chris Goggin being looked at

As I mentioned, emotions were high and several pushing and jawing matches broke out in the first half. The second one was so involved that my buddy and Director of Basketball Operations Chris Goggin was even injured.  Above he is pictured being attended to by Trainer Dave Fluker. I can’t wait to talk to Goggs and find out what happened!

crowd-shot-1crowd-shot-2crowd-shot-3


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