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Will financial hit from no state basketball tournaments shut doors at KHSAA?

Casey County players and coaches took a photo at midcourt of Rupp Arena after learning the state tournament had been postponed after their first round win.

By LARRY VAUGHT

What’s going to be the economic impact to the Kentucky High School Athletic Association over having to postpone — and almost surely eventually cancel — the girls and boys state basketball tournaments?

“It is a constant worry and we are trying to envision how we are going to deal with this knowing it may very well shut out doors,” KHSAA commissioner Julian Tackett said during an interview on WPBK-FM.

He admits the KHSAA will have to depend on sponsorship help and then “lean on our membership hard” for help to survive.

“We took a $1.3 to $1.5 million hit (from the state tournaments) that is not replaceable money,” Tackett said. “We purposely have been very frugal. We don’t sit on cash. But we are going to have to do something drastic just to stay operational.”

Tackett said the KHSAA cancelled some part-time help to reduce payroll and knows layoffs could be coming due to COVID-19.

Difficult financial times are not unknown territory for the KHSAA. Tackett said over 20 years costs associated with a new building put the association’s finances in trouble.

“Members need an association and they are not going to walk away from us,” Tackett said. “They probably will complain a little but there are enough veteran athletic directors and administrators that understand the value of the KHSAA. Members have stepped up before when we needed them and I have percent confidence they will again … and we do need them.”

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