Here are some things that have been on my mind for awhile now...
Idea #1…8 Championship Games in 2 Days
Here's my idea. Have the boys basketball championship games for all four divisions on the same day, a Sunday to be exact. Have all four games in the same gym. Have the games at 2:00, 4:00, 6:00 and 8:00. Then you also do the same thing on the girls side. All four divisions have their championship games on the same day, in the same gym. And in the same gym as all of the boys championship games are held! Have the girls games on a Saturday, and the boys games on a Sunday! It would look like this:
(All 8 games played at same gym)
2 PM - Girls Division-IV Title Game
4 PM - Girls Division-III Title Game
6 PM - Girls Division-II Title Game
8 PM - Girls Division-I Title Game
2 PM - Boys Division-IV Title Game
4 PM - Boys Division-III Title Game
6 PM - Boys Division-II Title Game
8 PM - Boys Division-I Title Game
As for the location, the choices are Lundholm, the Whittemore Center and the Verizon Center. My vote goes to the Verizon. Bigger capacity, no fans would get turned away like they do at Lundholm. And if they set it up the way I have proposed you would see larger crowds no question about it. I like the atmosphere at UNH, but there were many fans being turned away from the action last couple of years and that does not sit well with me one bit. Plus the Verizon is a more central location, making it a closer trip for the teams out west and up north.
If this happened it would be HUGE. It would really increase interest in the sport in the state.
The Other Key Aspect of This Idea
All 4 divisions, and boys and girls all end their seasons at the same time. Which means they all start their seasons at the same time. This would be HUGE. This past season it was WAY too confusing. You had Class S boys already in the semi-finals when Class L boys were still in the regular season, meanwhile Class S girls had already crowned a champion. Then you had the Class M boys and girls title games on the same night, same venue and at SNHU which was VERY good. However it was on the same night as the Class L boys quarterfinals. Bottom line, scheduling was a disaster this year. Each division were at different points of their seasons, and within divisions boys and girls were at different points in their seasons. There was no way to keep track of it all! What you need is for all of the divisions, both boys and girls to all start their seasons at the same time, all of them start their tournaments at the same time and all of them end their tournaments at the same time. Otherwise it is just WAY too confusing.
Oh yeah, and for the love of god, please bring the quarterfinals back to a neutral gym, so fans can see all 4 games in 1 night! Please!
Idea #2…Let's Crown ONE State Champion!
New Hampshire is a small state, we should be able to have ONE state champion. And not just in basketball, but all sports. Having 4 state champions in basketball, and 6 state champions in football is way too many.
For basketball what you have to do is either:
a) Have just 2 divisions. Division I and Division II. Division I = large school division and Division II = small school division. Within the divisions, separate the teams into conferences, either North/South or east/West. Use the heal points system to account for the fact that you're not playing all of the teams in your division. You will end up with roughly 40 teams in each division, with the top 16 teams in each according to the heal points making the tournament. The result would be 2 state champions, 1 large school champ and 1 small school champ. Then you could possibly have the two champs face off to declare a true state champion.
b) Keep it the way it is with 4 divisions. Only difference is that once you have a champion for each of the 4 divisions you have those 4 teams have a playoff to determine the true state champion. Have the Division I winner play the Division IV winner, and D-II vs. D-III. Have the winners of those 2 games play in the state championship game and then you have 1 true state champ.
Something has to be done though. Having 4 state champions in basketball and 6 in football is a joke, especially in a state this small.
While I'm At It
Let me also reiterate a couple of changes that should happen which I have already written at length about on this site.
a) We need a shot clock in NH!
b) Wait until after the tournament is completely over before voting on any awards!