Between The Court And Me: IUPUI

BY CHEYN ROUX | Ball State Sports Link

Every once in a while, there comes a time where we lose sight of where we’re at or what we’re doing.

Certain things or events happen in life that can blur your perception of things — even if you’re in a great place.

Last week wasn’t one of my best weeks in a while due to some personal issues, and because of that, it affected my outlook on everything I was doing and wherever I was.

Myself at the Purdue game.

When I woke up on Saturday Morning, it was gloomy and grey with a small drizzle that followed us throughout our drive down to Indianapolis.

I hadn’t shot a game since Purdue, so I was worried I would be off or wouldn’t get good photos.

I didn’t have some certain camera equipment that I usually would use, so that got to my head as well.

Kindon Crowder and Jarron Coleman chat during warm ups.

IUPUI plays its home games in the same arena as the Indy Fuel, which is a Minor League affiliate with the Chicago Blackhawks. The lighting in the arena was rather dim which can make image quality harder to obtain as well.

All these things were going through my head while preparing to shoot, and it distracted me from trying to capture the moments I wanted for this blog.

Nonetheless, there were still some things I took away from the first half.

IUPUI was heading into this match up with a three-game win streak, while Ball State was also riding a three-game win streak.

With impressive wins against Bradley and Boston College, IUPUI was not a team to overlook.

IUPUI taking the court.

Both teams didn’t seem to backdown from each other throughout the first half.

Brachen Hazen and Ahmed Ismail contest for a rebound.
Tayler Persons looks to find an open man.

Whether it was through scoring or physicality, the teams stayed neck-in-neck in the first 20 minutes of play.

Ishmael El-Amin hits a three-pointer.
Zach Gunn gets fouled.

As both teams went into the locker room for halftime, I was scrolling through my photos and would just shake my head: I just wasn’t getting what I wanted.

As I kept going through my camera roll, there was some attention brought to the center of the court.

I look over and see this kid begin to read off what seemed to be a handwritten note while in a wheelchair.

BJ reading his letter at halftime.

His name is B.J. and he’s a current patient at Riley Children Hospital located in Indianapolis.

He talked about his struggles since he was born, the treatments he’s received, the removal of his right leg and how appreciative he is of the hospital and the people close to him.

As he wrapped up his speech, he hugged what seemed to be his assistant, waved at students and began to leave the court.


And was smiling.


As I was feeling the tears of frustration starting to form, I couldn’t help but ask myself: What are you doing?

Through it all, BJ still had a smile.

Yet, here I am letting these small, insignificant things dictate my attitude during this awesome opportunity I’m lucky to even have.

Once the second half started, I started to look for different things in the game.

As the half played on, I noticed more of the mental part rather than the physical part of it.

IUPUI wasn’t getting calls its way and it showed. Their attitude reflected how they handled their situation and it cost them in the long run.

Ahmed Ismail reacting to his second technical.
Grant Weatherford complaining about a call.

Ball State realized this and simply worried about themselves. In the heat of the moment, emotions can run high and you just react in natural ways.

Tayler Persons reacts to a late foul by Grant Weatherford.

But throughout the second half, I noticed the players weren’t only just playing well, but they were also enjoying it.


Ball State celebrating the dunk by Zach Gunn.

And that is what Ball State had to its advantage: a positive mentality.

As I was driving back home after the game, I kept thinking about the win and the different moments from the game that stood out.

Zach Gunn slams down a dunk.

I also kept thinking about BJ.

BJ, a current patient at Riley Children’s Hospital.

At the end of the day, the game reminded me it’s not the things that happen to you that matter but rather the way you react to it.

Why? Because it can make all the difference.



Editor’s Note: Cheyn Roux is pursuing his Masters in Digital Storytelling and is an avid photographer.  A former collegiate soccer player, Roux’s work can be viewed at







Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *