ROBBINSVILLE, NJ–On Thursday morning, GMC Hoops learned in an article from the Star-Ledger that the NJSIAA has begun the process of including teams with records below .500 in the state tournament for eleven different sports including boys basketball.
A plan for a one year trial that would fill the brackets for 4, 8, or 16 teams for the 2009-10 season. The brackets would be filled with teams that didn’t make the state playoffs because their record was below .500 at the time of the cutoff. This would provide teams that play very difficult schedules an opportunity to compete in the Big Dance. Some committees have already voted unanimously in favor of the plan according to the article, and this would eliminate byes for top seeded teams in any of the various playoff brackets affected. This measure is to coincide with the plans for realigning Northern New Jersey into Super Conferences much like that of the GMC or Shore Conference.
It is a move in the right direction by the NJSIAA, but it should also consider making the cutoff date for the state tournament later in the season. This kind of move would also give more teams a chance to qualify, and a greater odds of the brackets being filled.