With the recreation of a classic scene from the movie Hoosiers, Sen. Ted Cruz sparked Twitter ridicule for a gaffe at a campaign event held at the Hickory basketball court gym from the classic movie; in Hoosier State Indiana, he called a basketball hoop a “basketball ring.”
On first pass, it sounds as though the Texas senator asks campaign staffer Bruce, “Tell me something. How tall is that basketball rim?” There, he appears to get the term correct.
Video of the exchange was posted on 13 WTHR Indianapolis.
The staffer measured and confirmed, “Ten feet!” as in the classic scene from the movie Hoosiers.
Cruz commenced the scene re-enactment, appearing to have exchanged the word “rim” for “ring,” stating, “Ten feet! You know the amazing thing is, that basketball ring, here in Indiana, it’s the same height as it is in New York City and every other place in this country. And there is nothing that Hoosiers cannot do.”
In the film, Coach Norman Dale asks one player to get on another’s shoulders and measure the distance “from the rim” to the floor.
The scene that Cruz was re-enacting:
A plethora of tweets began rolling in over the gaffe:
Trump has the support of Bobby Knight and Cruz just called a basketball hoop a "basketball ring" so who do you think is gonna win Indiana?
— Landon Deaton (@LDeaton33) April 27, 2016
Ted Cruz really called a basketball hoop a "basketball ring" today. Man I miss Obama already 😢😢😢 pic.twitter.com/XCgKXJnFJA
— Alexis Morgan (@alexiskmorgan) April 27, 2016
Did Ted Cruz just have somebody measure the height of a basketball hoop and then call it a basketball "ring"?
— Mario Rossi (@iowasportsguy) April 26, 2016
Ted Cruz just used the "measure that basket" line from Hoosiers. Except he called it a "Basketball Ring" #Fail
— Mike Carpenter (@coachcarp1) April 26, 2016
The fact Cruz called a "basketball hoop" a "basketball ring" makes me and my sport administration bachelors degree cringe. #ComeOnMan Ἴ💍
— David Amstutz (@tootallforyou66) April 27, 2016
Former Gov. Mike Huckabee’s daughter, Sarah, a senior adviser to Donald Trump’s campaign, tweeted:
Did Cruz call a basketball hoop a "basketball ring" in IN to distract media attention from @realDonaldTrump's landslide wins tonight?
— Sarah Huckabee (@SarahHuckabee) April 27, 2016
Then this tweeter attempted to defuse the situation:
Hey, Twitter. Calm down. Ted Cruz is not the only one who calls the hoop a "basketball ring." I've been doing it for years. #relatable
— john (@bballandbooks) April 27, 2016
The Cruz campaign posted video of the event, starting at his “and there is nothing that Hoosiers cannot do” line:
Cruz began his event in Knightstown as voting closed in five primary states on Tuesday. Trump pulled out wins in all five of the Acela primary states of Pennsylvania, Delaware, Connecticut, Maryland, and Rhode Island. The races were called early in the evening, even as Cruz was speaking to the Indiana crowd. Cruz is all-in in Indiana, where he hopes to pull out a win in its May 3 primary next week.
Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana.