IU hoping to cash in on tournament success
Indiana University's success in the NCAA Tournament is having a positive effect on student morale and the university's bottom line.
Win one game during the NCAA Tournament and you get the opportunity to play again. Win a second game and you are in the Sweet 16 and have a week to capitalize on it.
For the first time in 10 years, that is where IU finds itself this week.
"We are going to be awesome. I am pretty excited about it," said Emily Toehleim.
What does all of this Hoosier Hysteria really amount to?
"I don't know if you can put a value on it," said Head Coach Tom Crean. "I know you get a dollar value from the NCAA Tournament, in the sense of what comes back to the school, but I don't think you can put a dollar value on all the attention and all the accolades, the awareness people have of IU."
One study did put a dollar value on Butler's two-year Final Four run at a billion dollars. Enrollment applications at Butler actually increased by 41 percent.
"Our previous president used to say that he would like to have seen just a little bit of that in cash," said Tim Weede, Butler Vice President for Enrollment. "It's in PR value. It's raised the recognition of the campus."
IU Athletic Director Fred Glass says the resurgence of the basketball team will have a ripple effect.
"It will spill over to football recruiting and other areas and revenue generation for all of our sports. That is so important," Glass said. "A lot of studies have show a spike in enrollment so more people may take a look at Indiana."
Glass says the basketball program is not the most important room in the IU house, but he says it often serves as the front porch.
For some, the hopes lean toward another national championship. But realistically, for now, most people just want to make it to the Final Four in New Orleans. But first, the Hoosiers have to beat top-ranked Kentucky, again.
"We are awesome," said one fan.
"They are going to kick their butt. Rematch," said another.
The first Kentucky game went a long way to restoring the faith at IU. Now there are signs everywhere that the faithful believe.
And how do you put a price tag on that?