Starting in 2021 (through ’23), the IHSA Girls and Boys Basketball State Finals will be condensed to two weekends rather than its previous format of four weekends.
According to a release from the IHSA & WEEK-TV, The IHSA Girls Basketball State Finals will be held on a single weekend in 2021, spanning Thursday, Friday, and Saturday while the Boys Basketball State Finals will have the same model and be held one week later.
Currently, the IHSA Basketball State Finals take place over four weekends, with the Class 1A and 2A Girls Tournament and the Class 3A and 4A Girls Tournament being held on consecutive weekends at Illinois State University’s Redbird Arena in Normal, IL.
The next two weekends then feature the boys tourney in the same format (1A/2A one weekend followed by 3A/4A the next) at Carver Arena inside the Peoria Civic Center. Illinois State University has hosted the Girls State Finals since 1992, while next March will mark the 25th year of America’s Original March Madness being played in Peoria, IL.
IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson said in a statement,
“We obviously have great relationships with both venues and host communities. We fully expect both to bid once again, but believe it’s only fair to open up the process in conjunction with these format changes so that they can evaluate if and how it impacts them. We are not tied to any host format. We’d be open to having both tournaments at the same venue or continuing to have them in separate venues.”
The state tournaments will be played under the current four-weekend format in 2020, with the new format going into effect in 2021, 2022, and 2023.