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Fan support needed to rebuild basketball program

Does anyone remember the "golden years" of Iowa's men's basketball team?

In the 2005-06 season, the Hawkeyes won the Big Ten Tournament title, posted a 25-9 record, and received a No. 3 seed in the 2006 NCAA Tournament. Furthermore, the Hawkeyes were highly successful that season in Carver-Hawkeye Arena, winning all 17 home games and averaging 12,006 fans in attendance per game (25th in the nation).

Where did all this support go?

One could argue people don't care because of a 22-loss season last year, but that was under head coach Todd Lickliter, a man who has been replaced by Fran McCaffery. McCaffery brings many things to the table for the team, including great recruitment and leadership.

However, it will take a little more than just a great coach to turn this program around; a consistent energized fan base is equally important, as then-coach Steve Alford stated back in 2006. "The increase in student support last season added to the atmosphere as the fans and players fed off each other as the season progressed," he said.

Last season, the average basketball home game attendance was 9,550 per game, which some argue was being generous. In an arena that can hold 15,500 people, 9,550 people makes the atmosphere feel lifeless. Many people don't realize the influence fan support has on a sports game, but it can make all the difference.

With McCaffery's résumé and his capabilities in recruiting, it is up to us the fans to accelerate this program. With a sturdy fan base, we can show that we really do believe in our men's basketball team, which can then help lead to success and the rebirth of another great UI sports program.

Charlie Fagenholz
UI senior

Action needed to stop tuition hikes

The rising cost of tuition is a problem every school is going to have to address. In today's society higher education is necessary in order to get a high-paying job and not live paycheck to paycheck.

With the high demand for college, it is important that it is affordable to everyone. But with the rising cost of college, more and more students are graduating and starting their careers in debt.

It is very important for the state Board of Regents to look at how other schools are dealing with the rising cost of tuition. There has to be something done to stop this. It is scary to think what the cost could be if tuition continues to rise. If our state wants to have a well-balanced economy with a low number of people in poverty, it needs to support higher education.

In the Midwest, we are known for our education, and it is important we keep this tradition. Rising tuition needs to slow down so students can afford the education they need to get the high-paying jobs they want.

Shelby Heetland
UI freshman

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