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Saturday, January 27, 2007

Why Ladies' Top 28?

The LHSAA has renamed its girls state basketball tournament the Ladies' Top 28.

I like two-thirds of the name, the Top 28 part. I'm not so keen on the Ladies' part. Why not just call it the Girls' Top 28. The boys Top 28 should also be officially called the Boys' Top 28.

To me, the term ladies brings to mind figure skating or a staid event like Wimbledon. The players in the girls state tournament may be "young ladies'' off the court, but they are definitely tough competitors on it -- just as tough as the boys.

The tournament had to change the name from Sweet 16 -- which it has used for more than 40 years -- because the Kentucky High School Athletic Association had trademarked the name in 1988. It lets the NCAA use Sweet 16 for its basketball tournament but denied the LHSAA.

I understand why the girls tournament was called the Sweet 16, but I never really liked it. The tournament started with 16 teams and the name stuck as it expanded, which caused some confusion.

LHSAA commissioner Tommy Henry told the Hammond newspaper he wouldn't care if the tournament was still referred to as the Sweet 16 in the media. I wouldn't recommend it. Refer to it as the Girls' Top 28 instead.

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