By default (i.e., he's never called me a racist) KatsTMill is the classy Purdue blogger, but his gameday diary makes clear that it's merely a default designation. I should leave it alone, but sore winners attract sore losers.
First of all, don't let anyone tell you the Boilers don't know how to party. Let's see, it's one of the last beautiful days of the year, and there's a 3:30 kickoff on a college campus. Is there anything better than a 3:30 kickoff? You don't have to get up early, but you don't have to get home late. Here are the options: 1) load up the grill and do some tailgating; 2) get to Bloomington early in the afternoon, watch the end of the early games in one of the many beer-slinging establishments (this was what I did), and head to the stadium at 3:00; or 3) wait until the last possible minute and scarf some fast food in the car. Boiler Up!
T-Mill bitches quite a bit about the traffic, and I will readily concede that it was atrocious in 2007. That's another reason to get there early. Still, Fred Glass deserves kudos for cleaning things up quite a bit. I left my home just east of downtown Indianapolis at 11:25. Despite a 15 minute backup on 37 in southern Marion County because of a multicar accident, we were parked in the lot north of Assembly Hall at 12:54. It's an hour drive under normal circumstances, so the gameday traffic really only added about 15 minutes to the experience. I suppose it's appropriate that a Purdue grad would think his Rube Goldberg-esque trip through Brown County was worthwhile, but it took us less time to enter Bloomington through the front door.
I guess there are different philosophies regarding football games. If I travel any distance to watch a sporting event (hell, even if I'm just going as far as downtown Indy), I want to be there for every minute. T-Mill, by driving a hard bargain with the scalpers, saved himself 50 bucks but missed Purdue's first touchdown. And he "won" this exchange. I guess I can understand the approach at the Super Bowl, where a $1000 ticket might drop to $200 or something, but really? Over the difference between $60 and $35? Well done, I guess.
The rest of it is just a mishmash of stuff. One one hand, IU fans don't care enough. On the other hand, it was wrong of IU fans to cheer when the Hoosiers narrowed the deficit to 14 points with 3 minutes left in the third quarter. It does sound as if he was sitting near some drunk and unpleasant IU fans, and that's unfortunate. If they were bad enough, he should have said something to the ushers. On the other hand, keep in mind that Purdue's most popular chant, heard often on Saturday as I sat next to the Purdue section with my young son is, "one...two...three...four....first down!...BITCH!!!" (from adults, even!). Purdue has an "IU sucks" cheer that the student section does even when Purdue isn't playing IU (actually, please don't ever stop doing that). I love that you care so much). When the game is at Purdue, the students spend the whole game batting around an inflatable penis with "IU sucks" written on it. I went to an IU-Purdue game at Mackey where they had some odd video sequence mocking Mike Davis on the jumbotron (when they weren't displaying the IU logo with a circle and slash through it). Does IU have some unruly fans, particularly among students? Sure. Do a late kickoff and a rivalry game make it worse? Absolutely. Does TMill live in a glass house on this issue, given the institutionalized cheers, songs, student section behavior, and jumbotron garbage at West Lafayette A&M? Damn right he does. Joe McConnell, Purdue's retiring radio announcer, got some kudos from the PA announcer and polite applause from the crowd. Anyone think Don Fischer will get either whenever he retires?
But, hell, they won. To the victor goes the gloating. But it's about damn time that we starting sending these folks slinking home with a loss, not with an impromptu celebration in the south end zone.