Assembly Hall – or the “State Farm Center” to the millennials – has finally finished several years’ worth of renovations to fix up one of the oldest arenas in the Big Ten. Unfortunately, Illinois basketball has a few ugly losses under their belt. But, still head over to the “Farm” this semester, cheer for the opponents that are clearly better than the Illini and check out these seven new amenities in the renovated State Farm Center.
7.) Kleenex Boxes Under the Seat:
Illinois basketball has brought a fair amount of disappointment over the years. Whether it was a devastating loss to North Carolina in the 2005 NCAA Championship or no longer having the Chief, Illini fans have plenty of reason to shed a tear. The renovated State Farm Center recognizes our sobbing Illini by having an easy access to a Kleenex box under the seat. Please don’t masturbate with the Kleenex.
6.) A Second Student Section Called “Fanta Orange”:
In the midst of a three-year drought in making the NCAA Tournament, the Orange Krush’s student section is dwindling in support. To spice things up and get current students showing up to basketball games again, the new arena has a second student section, titled “Fanta Orange,” to create some competition between the groups in order to increase attendance. But we know it’s only another opportunity to make the program more money they will waste on the underperforming program.
5.) A Big Ten Souvenir Shop:
Inevitably, the Illini will be the underdog in most conference games. The nice people at the Farm realized this and saw it as an opportunity to make money. The redone arena features a pop-up souvenir shop that sells attire, foam fingers and beer koozies for every other Big Ten school – even Rutgers – so fans can always be cheering for the winning team, since it probably won’t be Illinois.
4.) In-Seat TVs Showing Other Games:
Nobody goes to basketball games to watch a basketball game. Everyone either wants the free extra-large t-shirt or take Instas saying #Illini. The renovated center has TVs connected to the seats that are showing other games, but you can watch fake news, SpongeBob or the latest Netflix obsession. Just don’t watch the game.
3.) The New KAM’s:
If the Fanta Orange student section isn’t able to bring more students into the game, then KAM’s certainly will. The acclaimed campus bar has moved into the renovated State Farm Center and allows Illini students and alumni to drink away their sorrows of a bad basketball team. Everything down to the sticky floors, created by basketball coach John Groce’s sweat from his shiny bald head, is replicated here.
2.) A Krannert Art Museum Exhibit:
The engineers behind the Farm’s renovations wanted to make sure that the basketball team’s success wasn’t the most confusing thing in the building, so they created a Krannert Art Museum exhibit which displays modern art. Enjoy some van Gogh when watching Maryland’s Melo Trimble fight through Illinois’ defense.
1.) Lovie Smith:
In an effort to make fans feel welcome inside the State Farm Center, Illinois athletics mandated that head football coach Lovie Smith stand at the door and greet fans. He’s also available after games to console disappointed Illini with his soothing voice following a loss.
So take the time and head out to the renovated State Farm Center this winter to catch the new amenities and a below-average basketball team. And if you’re not feeling basketball, go for Lovie; he wants you.