Swish or Swait: The Lowdown on B-Ball Lines

Opinion by Christian Cullen, Staff Writer

It is everyone’s favorite time of year again: Xavier basketball season — nights spent in Cintas going absolutely crazy when Desmond Claude brings home another dunk, roaring every student chant, throwing confetti in the air. 

We got a new hype up video, Xavier has an absolutely stacked out-of-conference lineup and the good times are starting to roll at this point in the semester. However, all of this comes at the expense of our school days, because for the third year in row, the lines for the basketball games are beyond insane, in spite of attempts to finally tame it. 

I had seen the recent emails about the “Blob’s Block Party,” and felt there was a ray of hope. Finally, the line would be solved. Instead of waking up at 8 a.m. for an 8 p.m. game, I could just show up at the block party a few hours before the game starts. As I walked to a 2 p.m. class, knowing that wristbands would be passed out when the party started at 4 p.m., I saw a small line forming, but still felt solid about getting a spot. After my class ended an hour later, the line went from right by the doors to around the corner and halfway down the R2 lot. I won’t say that the wristbands have not helped a bit with the line crushes that have occurred in the past — such as before the game against Indiana last year — but there are still some issues to iron out.

One major thing I noticed is that people with a wristband get to go to the front, even if they show up after the doors open. Admittedly, I did not get a wristband for the game against Jacksonville. It was still quite annoying to go to the back, slowly make my way toward the door and just have someone who got a wristband skip to the front. If you are not at the doors when they open, you should not get the benefits of having a wristband. 

Secondly, X-treme Fans should institute a system where if you are waiting for a wristband — say more than 30 minutes before the block party officially starts — then you do not get a wristband. It’ll make it so that people are no longer mass skipping class for the hope of getting a good spot in line. 

The wristband system has been tried before, only to be abandoned pretty quickly after the West Virginia game. It seems odd that they would revert back to a system that seemingly did not work just last year. One idea that did seem to work somewhat well is that you could reserve your place in line when you got your ticket depending on your place in the Top 500. This system could certainly bear to see a return with some likely reworks. Whatever the case, it is going to be a big year for Xavier basketball — it is important that they get the line right. 

This weirdness of the wristbands has led to a deeper concern: the Crosstown Shootout. As a junior, I will only ever have one Crosstown game on campus: this year. When I was a first year, we were sent home early for break, so not very many people in the senior and junior classes went to the game. I am very worried about the chances for the upperclassmen who deserve to be in the student section for their only Crosstown game. I would rather not have to miss class, but I also now have to deal with people getting in line for the wristbands at all hours of the morning. 

I will not claim to have a full solution to the line. It will likely always be an issue that Xavier students have to grapple with. But there has to be something that is equitable while also not necessitating that we all have to skip class to see our beloved Muskies play the great sport of basketball.