Afternoon State Sports Briefs: WIAA to scrap "Super Sectional" format for basketballWisconsin Sports
-- Wisconsin’s “Super Tuesday” high school basketball tournament games are being scrapped after just one year. The WIAA’s Board of Control made that decision this morning on a 10-0 vote in Stevens Point. And for the first time, the Division-One quarter-finals will be played as sectional finals on the Saturday before the boys’ and girls’ state tournaments – just like other divisions have done for years.
STEVENS POINT - Wisconsin’s “Super Tuesday” high school basketball tournament games are being scrapped after just one year. The WIAA’s Board of Control made that decision this morning on a 10-0 vote in Stevens Point. And for the first time, the Division-One quarter-finals will be played as sectional finals on the Saturday before the boys’ and girls’ state tournaments – just like other divisions have done for years.
Before last season, Division-One sent eight teams to Madison in March -- as opposed to just four teams in three other divisions. But a fifth division was added a year ago. And the Division-One quarter-finals were spread out among four other college campuses in Wisconsin to show-case the talent, and to avoid a log-jam of games at Madison. But coaches had heavy criticism about the “Super Tuesday” format, saying it resulted in a lot more traveling. And there was a time crunch on the boys’ side this year, as bad weather delayed a pair of “Super Tuesday” games to the night before the state tourney. The WIAA is keeping the five divisions in place.
Also today, the Board of Control unanimously agreed to move back the start of the girls’ basketball season to its former dates, starting in 2012. The current format has the girls’ state tournament after the boys’ in late March. And there were rumblings from the coaches of spring sports that they were getting basketball players too late. The girls’ tournament will be moved back two weeks, so it’s a week before the boys once again. And if there are hockey conflicts at the Kohl Center, the tourney will be held at the UW Field House.
The University of Wisconsin men’s basketball team will spend Thanksgiving weekend in Chicago – assuming they make the semi-finals of the Chicago Invitational Challenge. Eight schools are in the tournament, and Madison will be one of four host schools for opening-round games. The other sites are Bradley, Nevada, and BYU. Missouri-Kansas City, Longwood, Prairie View A&M, and Wofford round out the field. The four regional winners will head to Chicago for the semi-finals and finals on November 25th and 26th. Match-ups and game dates have yet to be determined.
The Milwaukee Bucks are looking for a great shooter in tonight’s NBA Draft – but don’t expect them to pick up Jimmer Fredette if he’s available. He was the nation’s top scorer last season, averaging almost 30 points a game for BYU. But Fredette turned down the Bucks’ request for a pre-draft audition, apparently because he didn’t want to be on the bench behind point guard Brandon Jennings. Bucks’ scouting director Billy McKinney said Fredette believes he can start right away for an NBA team. McKinney said he was disappointed that Fredette didn’t work out – but he remains confident there will be solid options available for a shooting guard at the Bucks’ Number-10 spot. They include Klay Thompson of Washington State and Alec Burks of Colorado. Thompson was arrested for marijuana possession earlier this year – and reports say the Bucks are satisfied with how Thompson explained it. Milwaukee has two picks this evening. They also have the 40th overall selection in the second-and-final round. There’s always a chance the Bucks will find a gem in that spot. Forward Luc Richard Mbah a Moute was a second-rounder in 2008, and he was an immediate contributor.
Teams in the Northwoods League are supposed to open new series tonight, after leaving a bunch of rainouts behind last night. The Madison Mallards are scheduled to host La Crosse, but more rain is in the forecast throughout Wisconsin into this evening. Eau Claire will host Waterloo, weather permitting. Green Bay is in Wausau to face the Wisconsin Woodchucks. And Wisconsin Rapids travels to Battle Creek. La Crosse had a double-header rained out at Battle Creek last night. The only game that was played in the league was at Waterloo, where the Bucks pummeled Madison 9-0. That moved Eau Claire into first-place in the South Division by a half-game over the Mallards. Other scheduled games in the Northwoods tonight include Rochester at Duluth, Brainerd at Willmar, and Saint Cloud at Thunder Bay. Alexandria is scheduled to host a double-header against North Division leader Mankato.