Hoosier Hysteria

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Hoosier Hysteria is the state of excitement surrounding basketball in Indiana, or more specifically the Indiana high school basketball tournament.[1] In part, the excitement stemmed from the inclusion of all tournament entrants into the same tournament, where a small town's David might knock off a large city's Goliath. The most famous example occurred in 1954, when Milan (enrollment 161) defeated Muncie Central (enrollment over 1,600) to win the State title. The plot of the now famous movie, Hoosiers, was based on the story of the 1954 Milan team and seems to typify the hysteria related to basketball in the state of Indiana.

Indiana's passion for basketball was observed and written about by basketball's inventor, James Naismith. In 1925, Naismith visited an Indiana basketball state finals game along with 15,000 screaming fans and later wrote, that while it was invented in Massachusetts, "basketball really had its origin in Indiana, which remains the center of the sport." Hoosiers have a traditional love for basketball similar to the love for football in Texas, Baseball in New York and Minnesotans' love for hockey. It truly is one of the State's most cherished traditions.


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