State school sports association votes to eliminate Tournament of Champions


The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association has voted to eliminate the Tournament of Champions.

The event was a way for schools to determine a true champion in a given sport. From now on, sports like basketball and lacrosse will crown many champions, just like football.

The Tournament of Champions was what made New Jersey unique among other states. But the NJSIAA says it has dragged out the season and getting rid of it will mean more schools can play more regular season games.

The association reportedly said most schools supported the move because the tournament usually only benefits power programs.

There may be some truth to this notion, especially in high school basketball. The high school basketball tournament dates back 30 years and only 11 schools have won it.

Some coaches agree with this decision, most notably Elizabeth’s basketball coach Phil Colicchio.

“I think now six schools are going home happy at the end of the year. COT took some of the shine off by winning the group championship,” he said.

But Mountain Lakes lacrosse coach Tim Flynn says it’s important to play with the best teams and not be successful.

“It’s quite disappointing honestly. I think for lacrosse, both for the girls and the boys, I think it was a very successful element. I also think it really helped develop the game, ”said Flynn.

Flynn says he hopes there is still a way to have a real champion.



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