.....Advertisement.....
.....Advertisement.....

PREP BASKETBALL OPINION: A week off during season isn't a good thing (2/2)

-A A +A
By Chuck Jones

Not often does high school basketball take a week off this deep into the season, but that’s exactly what happened to area teams this past week. The storm, which moved through dumping ice and snow on our area, brought the high school basketball season to a screeching halt. Basketball was the furthest thing from fans’ minds. In the aftermath of the storm, electricity, water and heat were top priorities, and rightfully so. Gyms, which weren’t being used as shelters, remained silent. The usual sounds of squeaking shoes or the bouncing ball on hardwood were nowhere to be heard. Coaches are hoping that changes this week, but there’s no guarantee. The threat of more inclement weather is on the horizon, not to mention a number of residents still are without power. “We haven’t had a legitimate practice in seven days,” John Hardin girls’ coach Bryan Todd said. “We went one day, but we didn’t have electricity. It was dark. It was like playing outside just before it goes pitch dark.” Todd and his Lady Bulldogs are scheduled to host Elizabethtown today in a 17th District game. Todd was unsure if the game would be played for obvious reasons although he said if it were up to him he would play. But it’s not that simple. Hardin County Schools are out of school and the superintendent would have to approve the game being played, according to Todd. There’s still the issue of electricity and water to deal with. If the Lady Bulldogs don’t play, it means they have another game to make up. John Hardin is already playing at Fort Knox on Wednesday and at Central Hardin on Thursday, which are both make-up games. The John Hardin girls’ team isn’t alone. The North Hardin boys’ team has two district home games – Elizabethtown and Central Hardin – to reschedule. The Trojans have less than two weeks to get the games in prior to the district tournament meeting. Besides the backlog of games to play, North Hardin coach Ron Bevars said the break couldn’t have come at a worse time for the Trojans. “When you’re playing good like we were, you want to play,” Bevars said. “We’ve been playing good and you want to keep that going. The only way to do that is by playing. That’s what the kids want and that’s what the coaches want.” This reminds us that we don’t always get what we want. I’d like someone else to clean up my yard, which is filled with downed limbs, but I know I’ll soon be forced to do it once I have a chance. But I digress. Could the weather have a positive effect on teams? Basketball is such a long season that a week off prior to starting that final push to the postseason could allow players to heal if needed and get their legs back under them. Coaches say that isn’t the case, though. Good coaches figure out a way to rest players’ legs. Good coaches know how to handle injuries. What they don’t like to deal with is a break in their routine. “It could be a good thing if you can get to the gym and still practice,” LaRue County girls’ coach Travis Wootton said. “You want to stay a little sharp. You don’t want to take many days off this late in the season. You want to stay sharp, so once you start playing again, it doesn’t hurt you.” That’s what area coaches are faced with now. Besides Todd, three other area coaches said their teams haven’t done anything since last Monday or before. It might take time to get players back where they were prior to the layoff, which is going to be even tougher considering teams could be running into a glut of games. For instance, Wootton said the Lady Hawks will play six games in nine days. Byes or off weeks – however you want to put it – are fine in football season, but not a good idea for basketball teams. Thanks to Mother Nature for pointing that out. Chuck Jones is the sports editor for The News-Enterprise. He can be reached at 505-1759 or at cjones@thenewsenterprise.com