U-Conn. students told to ‘have fun, but not too much fun’ after NCAA championship


Kentucky fans gather at the intersection of Elizabeth and State Streets near campus in Lexington, Ky., and burn shirts after losing the NCAA College basketball Championship game to UConn on April 7. (AP Photo/The Courier-Journal, James Crisp)

For students and fans at the University of Connecticut, it was a night worth celebrating — a 60-54 win over Kentucky for the NCAA national championship.

Some 10,000 students who filled U-Conn.’s Gampel Pavilion for the game Monday night spilled outside to celebrate afterward. They were told to “have fun, but not too much fun.”

In addition to the usual precautions — a bigger police presence, extra ambulances — U-Conn. went a step further to ensure rowdy kids stayed under control following Shabazz Napier’s 22 points that led to the Huskies’ second NCAA title in four years. The school hired a disc jockey and threw a dance party across the street do give them something to do.

Students still shattered a window in an engineering building, busted some street lights and flipped over furniture in the student union, according to news reports. Campus police had made nearly a dozen arrests by midnight. Most were related to breach of the peace, interfering with police and possession of alcohol by minors, WFSB-TV reported. However, at least one person who had been taken into custody was charged with inciting a riot. State police had made more, University of Connecticut spokesman Tom Breen told CBS News.

As for State Street in Lexington, Ky., police put out more than 40 small fires there, including 17 couch fires and 14 trash fires, and arrested six after the Wildcats’ loss. WKYT-TV also reported more than a dozen injuries, one in which the person was hit by a train near Conn Terrace and transported to the hospital.

Maybe the U-Conn. student now dubbed #RADerek on Twitter had a point. The Associated Press reported a resident assistant bent on keeping quiet hours quiet shot off an email.

It went viral:

Hey everyone,

Please go to Gampel or somewhere else to watch the game. Midnight quiet hours still apply here, so responsibly go nuts elsewhere. I’m on duty tonight and it’s going to be stressful, so please don’t to push it on our floor. There are going to be a lot of RA’s and police around North, if I wasn’t an RA I would personally stay away from here tonight.

In the end, remember that the only reason you care about the game is:

a.)    because they’re wearing a UConn uniform

b.)    you want an excuse to go wild

If it’s the first one, you’re cheering for laundry. Get excited if you want, but it’s nothing worth getting in trouble for. If it’s the second one, be as far away from me as possible tonight. I will not appreciate being disrespected over the outcome of a basketball game. I’ve done all I can to respect you and your privacy since August, please reciprocate this respect and be civil on our floor.

While you might get caught up in tonight, please remember that the night will eventually end. And no matter what the basketball team does, I’m still going to be your RA for another month.

So have fun, but not too much fun.

Derek

School officials confirmed the authenticity of the email, the AP reported, but said it was sent out to residents of the RA’s floor on Saturday.

Lindsey Bever is a national news reporter for The Washington Post. She writes for the Morning Mix news blog. Tweet her: @lindseybever
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