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Memories live in this old house

Berry Tramel Published: November 6, 2001

"We were supposed to play in Lloyd Noble," Mike McCurdy said. "Never got it built in time."

He didn't seem to mind. McCurdy rattled off old memories. The South Carolina game. Adams' 43-point night. The smell of the gym. The noise of the crowd that never numbered higher than 4,100.

"Some of the older facilities, they were tough to play in," McCurdy said.

He recalled Kansas State's Ahern Fieldhouse, which in the '80s joined the Field House on the scrapheap. Fans would reach out and pinch opponents inbounding the ball.

"Seemed like a lot of the older places had more atmosphere," McCurdy said.

Nothing against Lloyd Noble. It's got atmosphere, too. Nothing like the venerable temples, Gallagher-Iba Arena or Allen Fieldhouse, but decent and probably better with renovations completed this week.

But give this baby boomer a break. Lloyd Noble is a place I took myself. The Field House is where I needed Dad to take me.

In the early '70s, when Big Eight hoops were good just not hyped, I saw Garfield Heard and Clifford Ray, guys who could have starred for Billy Tubbs or Kelvin Sampson, and I saw them from seats that were right on top the court, even when the ticket line stretched to the street.

All because of Dad's wheels and wallet.

I called Dad on Monday to see if he wanted to go to the game. I didn't reach him, but it really doesn't matter. Memories filled the void.

Berry Tramel can be reached by e-mail at

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