As the 2010 Girls Basketball Tournament enters its final week and Boys Basketball Regionals are being contested, it’s a good time to report that a different format for District tournaments is being discussed. We call it the “non-traditional” draw.
Rather than designating one school to host all District games, in the non-traditional draw, one of the teams is playing at home. This is required for several Basketball and Girls Volleyball Districts, and optional at all, but there is sentiment – perhaps growing – that the exception should become the rule. That is, that the non-traditional draw should be required for most Districts in these sports.
The Representative Council will be talking about this (no action is scheduled) at its meeting March 26. Here are just some of the advantages and disadvantages that may be discussed:
- Reduces travel for one team.
- Likely to increase gate and concessions sales.
- Single-game format reduces time, avoids late nights.
- Single-game format allows smaller facilities to host.
- Single-game format gives almost every school a chance to host, not just the schools with large gyms; “spreads the wealth.”
- Single-game format reduces security costs.
- May reduce some MME conflicts which prevent schools from hosting the full tournament.
- Some gyms are not as desirable as others.
- No longer neutral courts for most teams.
- The “home game” attitude may make conditions less hospitable and sportsmanlike than is desired for MHSAA tournaments.
Perhaps the biggest hurdle is that it’s just different – non-traditional – and would represent a paradigm shift for these century-old events. However, in spite of what the Federal courts did to Michigan’s sports seasons, we still believe that doing things differently isn’t wrong; it may mean doing things better for everyone involved.