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Joined: 08/13/1998 Posts: 61130
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Others have posted below that it brings sadness to them...

I wouldn't say that I'm sad about the demolition, so much as reflective.

I was an E-School student during the construction of U-Hall. As Civil Engineering majors, my classmates and I kept an eye on the progress, so I feel strangely close to the building. From a cost savings perspective, it was a beautiful design...much like a ton of public buildings of its time.

On the other hand, it was not particularly aesthetically pleasing, nor did it successfully provide an architecture that met the primary purpose needs and wishes. The corridors were incredibly narrow for its purpose, and the seating arrangement was far from ideal for viewing basketball games. I know...I had season tickets for about ten years there. The flip side of that is that we had some awesome teams during the heyday, featuring, of course, players like Jeff Lamp and Lee Raker, the Stokes brothers, Bryant Stith, and of course Ralph Sampson. There was also something about the acoustics that made crowd noise almost unbearable, while being an amazing adrenalin rush. I still haven't heard a JPJ crowd get as insane as some were in the U-Hall glory days. We were #1 at times in those days, and I used to get chills feeling the noise and excitement and energy. I don't get up for as many games as I did then, so the noise comparisons may be twisted by age, or I haven't been in JPJ for the best crowds.

Anyway, I have many great memories of the building, and from that standpoint, it will be hard to let it go. On the other hand, I see the demolition as, in a way, breaking ground on a new era in Virginia Athletics. Presumably, at some point there will be another parking garage in North Grounds so that old folks like myself will have more convenient and consistent parking for baseball and other sports. Softball will finally get a new stadium in a far more convenient location, leading, I believe, to future successes. I'm sure there will be other pluses I haven't even dreamed of.

I'll always treasure my memories, though, of driving up from Richmond with my old pal, Charlie Hewitt, to watch Bobby and Ricky Stokes drive us nuts with excitement while driving opponents nuts with frustration as they stole countless passes and turned them into fast-break buckets.

(In response to this post by DunovaHoo)

Posted: 03/01/2018 at 12:01PM


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