per PPG…I like the idea idea of separate tournaments for private and public schools. I don’t think it will happen, BUT…
Other PIAA matters
• The organization is concerned about a drastic drop in ticket revenue from the PIAA basketball playoffs the past few years, especially this past season. In the 2010 PIAA basketball playoffs, ticket revenue was down almost $400,000 from a few years ago.
“It used to be that we could count on more than $1 million dollars from basketball,” said PIAA Executive Director Brad Cashman. “This past year, it was only $700,000.”
One of the reasons for the drop in basketball ticket revenue is that teams from the Philadelphia Public and Catholic Leagues have little fan following, especially those teams in the Public League. Some schools might bring more than 1,000 fans to a big PIAA playoff game. But it is not uncommon for a Public League team to bring fewer than 100 fans for a championship game.
Bob Lombardi, associate executive director of the PIAA, pointed out to the board how a few years ago a Philadelphia team made it to a championship game with a ticket presale of $17.
“Now I don’t know how that happens when tickets were $8 and $4,” Lombardi said with a laugh. “But that gives you an idea of what we’re dealing with sometimes.”
Some board members contend that the abolishment of true east-west brackets a few years ago has hurt basketball attendance. Some Eastern Pennsylvania schools play through the western side of the basketball brackets. Thus, sometimes a school from the Pittsburgh area might play a team from Philadelphia on a Wednesday night and the game is played three hours from each school. That affects attendance drastically.
• The PIAA has steering committees for every sport, and those committees meet to come up with ideas to present to the PIAA Board of Control. In June, the PIAA basketball steering committee will examine the possibility of returning to true east-west brackets. But the committee will also examine the possibility of having separate tournaments for public and private/parochial schools.