Bradley fans gather at Neighbors Dec. 8 for game vs. No. 1-ranked Duke

By Doug Halberstadt
Sports Columnist

Something is inherently fun and exciting about like-minded fans of the same sports team gathered to watch a game. Whether it’s the collective joy when things are going your way or the shared misery when the other team has the upper hand, it just seems to work. I’ve never been to a game-watching party where those in attendance did not have a good time.

That’s just what thousands of Bradley University basketball fans will be doing tonight (Wednesday, Dec. 8) when the Braves take on the No. 1-rated team in the nation, the Duke Blue Devils in North Carolina. The Braves are part of a coast-to-coast national game-watch party. More than 50 alumni chapters are hosting parties all across the USA, and parties are also planned in London and Bangkok.

The local Bradley alumni chapter, guests and friends will get together tonight at Neighbors Bar & Grill, 7745 Forest Hills Road in Loves Park. The party begins at 7:30 p.m.

Duke has had tremendous success over the past 30 years under Head Coach Mike Krzyzewski. They are one of the most prolific winning college basketball teams in the past three decades, and they are the fourth-winningest men’s basketball program of all-time. This year is no different for “Coach K” and his team. They are off to a perfect 8-0 start.

Bradley is coached by Jim Les. Les is a Bradley graduate and former point guard for the Braves. Les also played seven seasons in the NBA, from 1988 to 1995 for four franchises. The Braves are 4-5 to begin the 2010 season.

A friend of mine and fellow Bradley graduate, Kevin Ross, likened this game to the Christians and the lions. As the eternal Bradley optimist that I am, I immediately responded, “I thought Duke was supposed to be pretty good this year?” We’ll see.

Despite the outcome, it still should be a fun party. Feel free to wear something red or your Duke gear and come on out and join us. See you at Neighbors.

Doug Halberstadt can be reached via e-mail at

From the Dec. 8-14, 2010 issue

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