JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Oct. 22, 2015) – An energetic gathering of ETSU fans welcomed the 2015-16 basketball season Thursday night, as both the men’s and women’s basketball programs hosted the annual Bluenanza hoops celebration inside historic Brooks Gym.
Treated to special fan contests, dunk exhibitions, impromptu dancing performances from the women’s basketball team, and a brief scrimmage by the men’s basketball team, the event was special for everyone in attendance.
ETSU men’s basketball coach Steve Forbes said Bluenanza is important to the program.
“It’s exciting for the students and the fans to see our players in a more relaxed venue than practice or a game,” said Forbes, who is in his first season on the Buccaneer bench. “Our guys had fun with it, especially the chance to dunk a little bit, and I think the fans enjoyed getting to see our newcomers some more and getting to see what they are all about.”
Women’s basketball head coach Brittney Ezell said it’s all about relationships and building loyalty with the Buccaneers’ fan base.
“Bluenanza is a great opportunity for us to connect with the people that mean the most to us – our fans,” Ezell said. “To be able to engage them, to invite them into our basketball family, and to welcome them with open arms is special. That’s what tonight is about.”
The event, which was free to the public, featured both programs in traditional 3-point shooting challenges, dunk exhibitions, and intra-squad workouts. Fans also had the opportunity to hear from both Forbes and Ezell about their expectations for the upcoming season.
Special contests and prizes were also held for fans and students. Specifically, three fan-engagement contests had fans team up with selected players to win prizes such as an Apple iWatch, $300 cash and an iTunes gift card. In addition, three lucky students had the opportunity to make a half-court shot for free tuition in the spring semester.
For more on ETSU men’s and women’s basketball throughout the 2015-16 season, visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the basketball links.