MHSAA Announces State Finals Venue Changes
The Michigan High School Athletic Association has announced venue changes for its girls basketball, team wrestling and individual wrestling state finals.
The girls basketball state semifinals and finals will be played at Calvin College’s Van Noord Arena in Grand Rapids. Michigan State’s Breslin Center had played host to the girls basketball state finals since 2010, but thanks to a new NCAA ruling that allows college sites to host the first two rounds of the women’s basketball tournament, the MHSAA was forced to move the event, as the state finals weekends in 2018 and 2020-22 will conflict with the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Tournament.
The boys basketball state finals will be played at the Breslin Center for the 2017-18 season.
After calling Central Michigan University’s McGuirk Arena home for the last two years, the team wrestling state finals will start a four-year engagement with Kalamazoo’s Wings Event Center, while the individual wrestling finals will take place in March at Ford Field in Detroit. Previously a three-day event hosted by the Palace of Auburn Hills, will be adjusted to a two-day event, with four rounds being contended on Friday, March 2, 2018, and five round on Saturday, March 3.
In addition to the venue changes for girls basketball and wrestling, both 8-player football finals will be contested at Northern Michigan University’s Superior Dome, beginning this November. This fall will mark the first time that the 8-player division will award two state championships. NMU previously hosted the 8-player state final in 2011, with the event moving to Greenville in 2012.
“It is with much gratitude to our recent hosts of the girls basketball and wrestling finals that we make these changes. But although we have enjoyed our time and relationships built, we also are excited to work with these next facilities and their staffs, who are similarly passionate about creating the finest experiences for our athletes and fans,” said MHSAA Executive Director John Roberts, in a statement. “We received interest from a number of facilities and managers who also value what our championship events provide for teams and their communities, and we’re eager to begin working with Calvin College, Wings Event Center and our familiar friends at Ford Field and Northern Michigan University on these endeavors.”
Contracts for boys and girls basketball and individual wrestling state finals are only for the 2017-18 season, but there is a possibility of those events remaining at the new venues for additional years.