by Allie Qualls
Seats, scoreboard, court, two basketball goals: all of these are essential parts of any college basketball arena.
Of course some arenas have extra perks, such as special effects lighting and jumbotrons, but most players would say it is not the arena’s amenities that make it their favorite place to play.
For Butler senior women’s basketball player Terra Burns, it’s about the people who contribute to the atmosphere.
“My favorite place to play in is Hinkle, just because of its history,” Burns said. “And I like having the band there during home games.”
Most athletes would tell you their home court is where they like to play the most. For the Butler Bulldogs, home court is Hinkle Fieldhouse.
“It’s like a second home,” Butler sophomore women’s basketball player Sarah Hamm said.
Hinkle Fieldhouse has been home to Bulldogs since it was built in 1928 and is known for being one of the most historical sports arenas in the country.
The students and athletes said they do not take this for granted.
“I would say my favorite place to play is Hinkle,” senior women’s basketball player Devin Brierly said. “There is so much history in Hinkle, and it’s a privilege to play there.”
But, where do the Bulldogs like to play when they are away from Hinkle?
Brierly said her favorite away location is Kress Event Center, home to the Green Bay Phoenix.
“They always have an awesome atmosphere with the gymnasium packed,” Brierly said. “It’s so fun to play in front of that many people. They are also one of our biggest rivals.”
Sophomore transfer Daress McClung enjoyed her experience playing in the massive 721,762 square foot KFC Yum! Center, located in Louisville, Ky.
“It is very modern, up to date with its seating patterns and gym floor design,” she said. “The arena is built around the gym floor with heightening seats, continuously going up from gym floor level up.
“Its an amazing atmosphere due to the diehard fans.”
The men’s basketball team has extensive road experience thanks to multiple NCAA tournament appearances and back-to-back appearances in the National Championship game.
Seniors Ronald Nored and Garrett Butcher said they like to play in NFL arenas because it means they are back in the Final Four, and, like any dog, once they have gotten a taste of something they like, they want more.
“The atmosphere is unbelievable,” Nored said of playing in the large arenas.