March is approaching rapidly, which means that the Indiana High School State Basketball Championship will be ramping up and teams will slowly wind through the process to make the “Final Four” and play before a crowd of more than 48,000 people at the RCA Dome in Indianapolis.
Yes, you heard me. 48,000 people.
This is Indiana – we take our basketball seriously.
The photo above isn’t unusual in my home state. From around the age of six, I had a basketball goal in our driveway – and I shot baskets almost every day.
I turned out to be a pretty horrible basketball player and didn’t play competively after the 8th grade – I was more interested in being in the band that played at basketball games – and so in my own way, I contributed to the drama that is Indiana High School Basketball.
My town had only 2400 residents – I guarantee you that on the night of a home game – all 2400 of them were packed in that 1940’s era Gymnasium at the corner of 5th and Railroad Streets to watch Covington play whatever opponent dared to come into our most holy of temples.
You haven’t seen intensity in a sport until you’ve seen Indiana High School Basketball.
The picture above, by the way, comes from Milan, Indiana – the team that went to the finals in the 1950’s and defeated Muncie Central. It’s the story immortalized in the movie Hoosiers.
And somewhere, in Indiana, right now, in the snow and mud, there’s a group of kids doing exactly what you see above. Shooting hoops and dreaming of taking that court at the RCA Dome to win it all.