Cavalier Corner

June 2019

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WHAT THEY'RE SAYING "With its unusual circular design — visually echoing the nearby Rotunda — and gleaming, scalloped roof, it was an instant Central Virginia landmark, recognizable from aircraft and nearby mountain- tops and pretty useful for giving driving directions in the pre-GPS era. "Its architects envisioned all sorts of uses, including as a concert hall — the first major event ever held there was a performance by the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra — and as a movie theater. Over the years, it hosted an astounding variety of events beyond basketball, from class registration to graduation ceremonies, from anti-Vietnam War speeches to national governors' conferences, from mass swine flu vaccination clinics to professional wrestling matches. And concerts — lots and lots of concerts." — Dan Heuchert of "That building housed over 10,000 athletes in its life, and all those athletes got the chance to make memories together. There will never be another building like University Hall." — UVA men's basketball star Ralph Sampson (The Daily Progress) "Students-athletes of many sports trained, competed, stud- ied and ate meals in U-Hall. As we look forward, these are the memories that will help propel Virginia athletics. A lot of people remember the games, but you remember the hard times. You remember the sprints and the practices, the injuries, the bruises and the homesickness. So this facility was your home, and I under- stand that, and we don't take that for granted." — UVA director of athletics Carla Williams (The Daily Progress) "I literally used to sit there, or in [soccer coach] Bruce Arena's office, and if we took the panels out, we would hear every speech — pregame, halftime, postgame — of all these great coaches through the wall. [Duke's] Mike Krzyzewski, [UNC's] Dean Smith, [Maryland's] Lefty Driesell, [Georgia Tech's] Bobby Cremins, [North Carolina State's] Jim Valvano. We heard it all. "It really taught me a lot about how to handle situations. Krzyze- wski was interesting. Sometimes he would come in and just blast [his team]. Other times, he would come in and he would almost whisper to the point where the players said, 'Coach, we can't hear you,' and he would say, 'Well, then you better listen better.' I would be like, 'Wow, that was so effective.' I watched how they changed strategy or stuck with the same thing after halftime. Crazy, huh? Sitting in a closet and listening to halftime. "… That's how I learned the game, how to coach a team, pre- game, halftime, postgame." — Former UVA women's basketball coach Debbie Ryan, who won 739 games during her 34-year career at UVA, on being able to eavesdrop on some of the sport's top coaches while in U-Hall ( "Like most buildings, University Hall reached its expiration date. And upon taking over as athletic director in 2001, Craig Littlepage saw both the program and its home court in decay and began planning to build the sparkling John Paul Jones Arena across the street from University Hall. It cost $131 million, but has paid for itself in revenue and exposure, thanks to [head coach Tony] Ben- nett's arrival and the team's recent dominance. "Still, even if you now drive a Bentley, you probably appreciate the Ford Pinto that once (usually) got you from Point A to Point B. Longtime Virginia fans are undoubtedly grateful for JPJ and their program's lofty status, but most are also aware of its origins — and a little sad to see a piece of it end." — Steve DeShazo (The Free Lance-Star) Mason, the single-game scoring record for U-Hall was set. Feb. 19, 1995 — Harold Deane's two free throws with 4.2 seconds remaining, and Jason Williford's subsequent steal from Jerry Stackhouse, give No. 16 UVA a 73-71 win over No. 2 North Carolina. Jan. 2, 1996 — A 63-59 loss to Clemson ends the women's team's 61-game home winning streak. March 23, 1996 — Tora Suber scores 26 points as the host Cavaliers defeat ODU 72-60 in the NCAA Tournament's East Regional semifinals. Aug. 13, 1999 — A building inspection re- vealed damage to the support ring around the stadium, forcing closure of the arena for sev- eral weeks for repairs. Feb. 21, 1999 — UVA defeats Florida State 73-55, the 500th career victory for Women's Basketball Hall of Fame coach Debbie Ryan. March 15, 2000 — The longest game in U-Hall history occurred with a triple-overtime contest against the Georgetown Hoyas in the NIT. The Hoyas survived with a 115-111 win behind Kevin Braswell's 40 points, the most ever by an opponent at U-Hall. Feb. 14, 2001 — Adam Hall's layup with less than one second remaining lifts No. 12 Virginia over No. 3 Duke 91-89, ending the Cavaliers' 12-game losing streak to the Blue Devils and Duke's 24-game ACC road winning streak. Feb. 25, 2001 — Virginia routs No. 2 North Carolina 86-66 to seal its lone NCAA Tournament bid in Pete Gillen's seven seasons as head coach. May 23, 2003 — Virginia breaks ground on a new basketball home, John Paul Jones Arena. Dec. 29, 2004 — Ryan notches her 600th career victory with Virginia's 98-52 triumph over James Madison. Feb. 11, 2006 — Led by Sean Singletary's 23 points, Virginia's men win their 400th game at U-Hall, 81-77 in overtime against Virginia Tech. March 5, 2006 — Maryland defeats UVA 71-70 in the FINAL GAME PLAYED AT U-HALL. The Terps' Mike Jones hits a late three-pointer for the final bucket in the building's 41 years. — Greg Waters JUNE 2019 15 University Hall boasted a circular design and ribbed concrete roof, housing its blue and orange seats. PHOTO COURTESY UVA

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