BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (21Alive) - Indiana University's men's basketball game for Tuesday night has been postponed after a piece of the Assembly Hall ceiling fell into a seating area.
Around 3 p.m., an piece of metal facing fell into the northwest part of arena. The 8-ft. by 14-inch facing damaged Section F of the lower bowl, the IU athletic department announced in a statement.
Structural engineers determined snow on the roof of the arena caused the metal facing to fall.
"One of the questions we asked as soon as they came down from being up there: did you see anything that causes us concern?," Thomas Morrison, Indiana Vice President of Capital Planning & Facilities, says in a press conference Tuesday night. "In terms of the structural viability of the building or the structural viability of the roof itself; and the answer was no."
Morrison says the incident was isolated, and a result of weather. He adds the fallen facing is not an indictment on the infrastructure of the building set to undergo $40 million in renovations over the next two years.
The women's basketball game will play Michigan as scheduled on Wednesday night.
The men's game with Iowa is yet to be rescheduled.
Officials at Bankers Life Fieldhouse offered the Indianapolis arena for the game, but IU officials say logistics prevented moving the game there.
"We understand of the appeal of potentially having Iowa be able to play while they were still here, even if delayed a little bit," Indiana athletic director Fred Glass says. "Because of the uncertainty of returning to Assembly Hall and the logistical challenges of playing in Bankers Life Fieldhouse, we respectfully declined the Pacers' offer."
University officials are confident that the arena will be ready for the seating capacity of the Hoosiers' next home game a week from Sunday.
"You just adjust, and that's what we've done today," Indiana men's basketball head coach Tom Crean says. "Our guys were extremely ready to play. I'm disappointed that we didn't get to do that. But that pales in comparison to what any of us would have felt like at 9:30 or 10:00 tonight if something would have happened inside that building."
ESPN crews were setting up for the game, and caught the falling of the facing on camera. No one was injured.
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