"To have it locked in long-term frankly means we can move on to other things." With that one sentence, Xavier AD Greg Christopher summed up my feelings about this whole silly episode. Xavier and UC announced yesterday evening that they have reached an agreement to do away with the name Crosstown Classic and bring the Crosstown Shootout back to the on-campus gyms. The schools have a ten-year agreement to alternate home sites.
The two years the game was held on a "neutral" site were not an abject disaster, but they weren't far from it. Neither game was competitive, with UC winning in a blowout two years ago before Xavier won in an even grander blowout last season. The 17,000-seat US Bank Arena didn't come close to selling out either year, with almost 7,000 seats left empty last season. The arrangement did continue a rivalry that has been intact longer than the nation of Israel, so I guess it had that going for it.
Of course, the site of the game was never really the problem. Young men passionate about competition boiled over in the waning seconds of an intense rivalry that was stoked to a boil by the same media that then led the charge against the players involved. It wasn't the first time hands have been thrown in a college basketball game, and it wasn't the last. Hopefully this is a sign that we've moved on now.