NORMAL, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — 2021’s Illinois State University Men’s Basketball home opener looked different from last year. That’s because fans were in attendance.
Tuesday afternoon, Redbird Men’s Basketball Head Coach Dan Muller said he was excited for fans to be able to see this year’s season opener.
“Redbird Arena is one of the best places to play in the country, I know that as a player and as a coach. Tonight to see some fans in the stands is exciting, but it also helps your players,” said Coach Muller.
He added the energy the fans bring to the game can be a difference-maker.
“They don’t call it home court because of the colors on the court,” laughed Coach Muller.
“They call it home-court advantage because of the fans in the stands, they bring energy, it gives our players confidence, and it’s true on the road also, [they] bring loud noise and get the other team, maybe rattled a little bit, it impacts the game,” he continued.
Marvin Brant, a Redbird Men’s Basketball fan, said he’s been supporting the Birds since Redbird Arena was built in 1989.
“I moved into town in ’83, and we could hardly get tickets originally. So when they built the new stadium, we’ve had season tickets since then,” said Brant.
He said he will continue to support the Redbirds during success and failure.
“You gotta support the team even during bad times or good, it’s more fun when they’re playing good, but we’ll be there,” said Brant.
The Redbird Men’s Basketball Team’s next home game is against Murray State on Nov. 16.