LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – For the first time in the 17-year history of the Capital Area Activities Conference, there will be a conference basketball tournament to determine the CAAC Blue champion.
This decision was made due to the number of teams in the CAAC Blue that have been shutdown at some point in the season, due to COVID-19, which didn’t allow for a proper regular season champion to be crowned.
It will be a seeded tournament for both the boys and girls, and will run the week of March 15.
The girls tournament will take place on Monday (March 15), Wednesday (March
17), and Friday (March 19). The boys tournament will run on Tuesday (March 16), Thursday (March 18), and Saturday (March 20).
In the girls bracket, East Lansing was given the one seed and Dewitt received the two seed. Which means both will have a first round bye.
In the first round, Grand Ledge, the No. 3 seed, will take on No. 6 Lansing Waverly, and No. 4 Okemos will take on No. 5 Holt.
For the boys, East Lansing, who is 5-0 this season, claimed the one seed and is the only boys team with a bye.
In the first round, Dewitt, the No. 2 seed, will take on No. 7 Okemos. No. 3 Holt will face No. 6 Lansing Everett. No. 4 Lansing Waverly will take on No. 5 Grand Ledge.
The athletic directors in the CAAC Blue came up with this idea, and then pitched it to CAAC commissioner, Tom Hunt.
“It’ll give kids something to play for,” Hunt said. “If you’re the seventh seed or sixth seed, you still got a shot. We think it’s good for kids and, given the situation that we are in, with the league champion being up in the air we thought this was a good alternative to that.”
Another positive to the conference tournament is that it allows teams to prepare for the MHSAA tournament.
“Get them used to the single elimination, type of format, as they go into the state tournament. So it seemed to be a good solution to concerns that we were having,” Hunt said.
“I do believe that a championship game on a Friday before Districts will definitely spark a fire inside of the athletes to really go out and stay focused in on their job, and what they have to do,” East Lansing girls basketball coach, Rob Smith said.