Once Indiana had the best high school basketball tournament in the world. Now, we no longer do. We gave it away so that more people could get trophies and more athletic directors could feel good about themselves. The people who gave it away and feel good about themselves studied themselves and concluded that they are A-OK.
Current students who were, at oldest, three years old when the single-class basketball format was abandoned don’t know anything about it. They and the administrators of their schools voted heavily in favor of the current class-based system. On the other side, a self-selecting group of people who showed up at hearings on the issue voted overwhelmingly in favor of a return to the single class system. I don’t know whether there has been reliable polling of the state as a whole. Measuring attendance, it is abundantly clear that spectators like the current system much less than the old one.
All I know is that Indiana once had something special; something transcendent and state-defining. Now we don’t. Maybe it’s better for the boys playing basketball to have their end-of-year tournament normalized with the other sports and the other states rather than doing something a little different and exciting. It’s not especially good for a state that used to have a special passion for the sport. We’ve been lobotomized and our Hoosier Hysteria is cured.
Kyle Stokes has more.