CHAMPAIGN, Ill., (WCIA) — Some of the loudest fans in college basketball are apologizing for a ticket mess between Illinois and Iowa.
The University of Illinois student section, Orange Krush, is taking the blame after Iowa invalidated 200 of their road trip tickets. Krush leaders admitted they used the Boys and Girls Club name to buy them.
Orange Krush posted their apology on Twitter.
In their statement, Krush said they misrepresented themselves as a charitable organization. They directly say sorry to Iowa’s ticket office and Director of Athletics, Gary Barta.
As a non-profit charitable organization, Krush said they’re always trying to better the Champaign-Urbana community. The statement goes on to say it was never their intention to lessen the importance of community organizations.
Caitlin Niesman, a student photographer with Illini Pride, said she was planning to go to the game in Iowa City on Saturday. Now, she’s trying to make the best of the situation.
She’s supporting other Illinois teams like tennis and wrestling this weekend at home instead.
“It definitely brings the team energy and it brings our students’ energy,” Niesman said. “We’re creating the culture of Illinois that freshmen are choosing and prospective students are choosing to come to Illinois for the culture. We’re creating that culture by bringing the energy and being loud. If you’ve ever been in State Farm Center when it’s through the roof loud, it’s so worth it.”
The Orange Krush statement also said a road trip prank like this is a tradition they always look forward to. They plan to continue the annual trip in a way that “stays true to the spirit and fun competition Illinois fans expect.”
Kent Brown with Illinois Athletics said in the past, they have sold tickets to visiting groups of students from opposing schools.
On Friday night, the 200 students who were supposed to make the trip to Iowa City are invited to the 7 p.m. wrestling match. There, they can get a wristband to automatically get a seat in the student section for the next home game. Illinois Men’s Basketball plays Minnesota at the State Farm Center Tuesday night.