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Public Weighing In On Single Class Basketball

The IHSAA is taking a straw poll at each meeting and will release the results of those votes.

basketball court

Photo: Indiana Public Media

Some people would like the IHSAA to return to single class basketball.

Hoosiers are getting a chance to voice their opinions about reinstating single-class basketball in a series of 11 public meetings being held around the state. One of the meetings that took place Tuesday at Plainfield High School in central Indiana.

The Indiana High School Athletic Association or IHSAA made an agreement with State Senator Mike Delph to hold the public forums. Delph wants to reinstate single-class basketball but withdrew legislation to do so after IHSAA Commissioner Bobby Cox agreed to gauge public interest in the matter.

The meetings have each drawn crowds of about 50 people, and the opinions have been split.

Virgil Ferguson is the athletic director at North Posey High School in southwest Indiana. He says, coming from a small school, he wants to retain the multi-class system.

“Our kids cannot compete with a 4,500 student enrollment that some of the schools have, and it would just not be fair to our small schools to take this class system away from them,” he says.

But Terre Haute resident Steven Songer says he wants to see single-class basketball restored to help revive a great Hoosier tradition.

“At one time, we had the most respected, most admired system in the United States,” he says. “Now we’re just another pebble on the beach.”

Others suggested compromises, like moving to a two-class system or having a hybrid tournament that begins as multi-class in regionals and ends up with single class in sectionals and finals.

The IHSAA is taking a straw poll at each meeting and will release the results of those votes, along with input from school administrators and student-athletes, in the next couple of months

Brandon Smith, IPBS

Brandon Smith, IPBS has previously worked as a reporter and anchor for KBIA Radio in Columbia, MO, and at WSPY Radio in Plano, IL as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.

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