Non-profit organization, Hoosier Ticket Project helps Slovakian student attend first IU basketball game

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA) – An experience Sam Kollar won’t forget, all thanks to his roommate, CJ Hallam.

Sam Kollar is from Slovakia and a sophomore at Indiana Tech.

Hallam says he contacted the organization for tickets because he wanted Sam to experience his first IU basketball game.

They both went to the game against Penn State last month. Kollar says when he found out he was going to the game the feeling was indescribable

“To be honest, I couldn’t process everything at the moment because I didn’t know CJ signed us up for it and he just told me the same day that we had tickets and were going to the game and I I really couldn’t prepare for it,” Kollar said.

Hallam says he wanted Kollar to experience an Indiana classic.

“To get someone who has really never honestly been to a professional sporting event, or college of any kind, to experience something of that gratitude, that electricity, it was just something that I was really excited to bring him to life,” Hallam said.

The non-profit organization Hoosier Ticket Project was founded by Josh Bruick. The project was launched in early December and he says it took off in such a short time.

“You always think about the long-term impact it can have. It’s special to have an impact on the lives of people who otherwise wouldn’t have the opportunity to attend a game, it means a lot to me and my two partners,” said Bruick.

He told ABC21 through monetary donations and season ticket holders, the Hoosier Ticket Project is coming to life. Bruick says for most games they will give away 40 tickets to anyone who wants to experience a game for the first time, who may not be able to afford it, to name a few a few reasons. They give tickets to fans to enjoy a game.

“When you see those faces, when you get comments and photos. It really hits home,” Bruick said.

Hallam and Kollar say they will treasure this forever

“It was a great experience because it was so huge inside and it can fit so many people and also there was the cheering band, there was the cheerleaders and stuff and like I said, I’ve never been to an event like this,” Kollar said.

“To turn to him and see his face and be like, ‘oh whoa.’ Seeing so many people and seeing the flashing lights and stuff was all I wanted to see and it was totally worth it to me.

Bruick also told ABC21 that they will need more volunteers as the organization continues to grow. He says if you’d like to donate tickets or learn more about the Hoosier Ticket Project, click here.

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