MACON, Ga. — The organization in charge of the Georgia high school basketball championships admitted that 14 winners were crowned on a court that wasn’t set up to standards.
The Georgia High School Association (GHSA) released a statement Saturday evening that they had seen reports circulating that the goals were set up in the incorrect position at the Macon Centerplex where the day’s championship basketball games took place. Those reports, it turns out, were correct.
But GHSA officials said that the games were still fair.
“The goals were the same distance into the court at both ends of the floor,” said GHSA Executive Director Gary Phillips. “The playing conditions were exactly the same for both teams on the court and for all of the 14 championship games that were played. So I can’t see any reason we would consider changing the outcomes.”
The Marietta Daily Journal was the first to report that the stanchions that hold up the baskets were placed roughly 1 foot farther back from regulation.
Ernie Yarbrough, the GHSA’s coordinator of basketball, told the Daily Journal that officials were made aware Saturday afternoon of the discrepancy. He said because the tournament was running behind schedule, they opted against fixing it because it would take an hour to move the stanchions.
Phillips said that GHSA staff watched the games very closely to check for any “appreciable effect” on the shooting or play of the teams. The staff didn’t notice any issues and said teams involved still performed well from the free throw line.
“While this certainly was not an ideal situation or one that we wanted to happen, we think the conditions were fair for all the teams,” Phillips said. “We have plans to make sure this never happens again, but we have no plans to change anything that happened this week in Macon.”
Yarbrough said officials from the Macon Coliseum were responsible for setting up the court.
According to the Daily Journal, the 28 teams over three days shot 59% from the free throw line and 20% on three-pointers.
Contributing: Christopher B. Buchanan, 11Alive