SDSU Associate Head Coach Brian Dutcher and USD Head Coach Lamont Smith stopped by Padres Social Hour on Friday to discuss the upcoming NCAA Men's Basketball game to held at Petco Park in December. The Padres, who just announced the baseball stadium as the venue for the game earlier that afternoon, have never held a college basketball game at Petco Park, so it seems only fitting to have two San Diego universities bring the sport to the East Village stadium.
"You know, it's really exciting," said Dutcher about the prospect of playing basketball at Petco Park. "The midway game (in 2012) had such a great atmosphere, and the event itself was special. I think that's what we're going to have here for the city of San Diego. We're going to have an event that we both will be honored to play in and a game that hopefully the city will be willing to come out to and give us our support."
Lamont also had nothing but positive things to say about the match in December. "We're extremely honored to play in such a distinctive game and be able to have both universities and our players and the city of San Diego to be a part of it."
The Aztecs played a game against Syracuse on the USS Midway back in 2012 - an unconventional yet picturesque venue to say the least. But is there any concern about fielding a basketball game at a baseball park? For Coach Dutcher, venue isn't nearly as important as environment. "It's all atmosphere. This one will probably be as fine as an atmosphere that we will have," continued Dutcher. "It will be a home game, technically, for both teams… I'm going to be interested to see what kind of crowd we can get out here."
To hear more about Dutcher and Smith's thoughts on the upcoming game and the makeup of their respective basketball programs, then check out the video above with Mike Grace. And for more interviews, highlights and Padres content just like this, be sure to check out padres.com/socialhour.