Kokomo, Ind. – “The IU Kokomo men’s basketball team has a big task ahead of them as they travel to Evansville Thursday,” Head Coach Eric Echelbarger stated. The Cougars will take on the University of Evansville on Thursday, November 14 at 7:00 p.m. ET at the Ford Center.
“We really appreciate the opportunity to play against Evansville, and have the chance to represent our program and university at a high Division I level and environment. Our mentality is the same every game in that we want to play the hardest and smartest basketball we can every time we take the court,” said Echelbarger.
The Purple Aces are coming off a historical win for their program defeating the #1-ranked team in the country, the University of Kentucky, with a 67-63 win Tuesday night (November 12). This is the first team in the Missouri Valley Conference to defeat a top-ranked non-conference team on the road.
With IU Kokomo up next for Evansville, Echelbarger stated, “We just look at it in terms of being a very special opportunity for our basketball program. How many people get a chance to play against a team that just beat the #1-ranked team in America, the Kentucky Wildcats? It will be a great crowd and a charged-up environment. We want to feed off that energy and play our best basketball.”
Echelbarger and his coaching staff see this as a chance to track the overall growth of the team and individual players. “Over the past couple weeks, we have made a lot of positive strides with our team and are moving in a great direction,” he said. “We want to build off that momentum at Evansville and play our best basketball. Obviously, our goal every game is to win and that doesn’t change tomorrow night.”
Earlier in October, the Cougars played their first exhibition match against the historic Big East powerhouse, the Butler Bulldogs, at Hinkle Fieldhouse. Evansville is another opportunity for the IU Kokomo men’s basketball program to compete against a high-profile opponent in an electric environment.
“When you think about an experience like Evansville tomorrow, and earlier this year playing at Butler, most players never get to experience playing in front of 8,000 fans. I know the opportunity means a lot to our guys and it is something they will look back on 20 years from now and tell their kids about,” Echelbarger said.
Opponent: University of Evansville
Conference: Missouri Valley
Time: 7:00 PM ET
Venue: The Ford Center
Coverage: TV – ESPN3
Live Stats - https://gopurpleaces.com/sidearmstats/mbball/summary
Indiana University Kokomo celebrates 75 years as north central Indiana’s choice for higher education.