When does High School Basketball Season Start In The US?

If you’re a keen high school basketball player, or just a keen basketball player or supporter in general than you’re probably counting down the days till the high school basketball season starts. If you’re waiting to find out if you made the team this season or know that you did then you probably can’t wait for practices to begin. While the traveling leagues and the AAU have already started their summer and fall leagues, high school players will have to wait a little longer to get started, thanks to the more regimented schedules of the high schools.

High School Basketball Season Start

Don’t worry though, there’s not long to go now, and the beginning of your high school basketball season is coming up any minute now. Most of the winter sports seasons start after Thanksgiving, and practices generally start a few weeks before that, but this changes depending on what region you’re looking at.

Most states don’t want the winter sports seasons to clash with football and restrict practices until the end of the football season, but this is far from common practice. You state might differentiate between your school and others depending on what football program you have, other schools have different regulations for girls and boys’ programs so keep an eye out for your state regulations

The length of the basketball season also differs from state to state. Most allow roughly nine to-10 school weeks for the development of the season and structure games around the calendar for the school year. But again, this isn’t common practice, other schools prefer to base their seasons on the number of games played. Regardless of what your school does, all schools aim to finish post-season tournaments right around when the spring sports start so you have some idea of the length of the season once it’s started.

Below you’ll find a list of each state and the dates they allow for coaching and organized practice to start. This should help you get a better idea of what sort of time your high school is expected to start preparing for the season, and how long you can expect the season to last with the end date being the beginning of summer sports. A lot of states also let their schools have ‘open gym’ periods where you can practice but be aware that these won’t be organized. For the sake of your reference, we’ve also included the first official game, not including anything preseason. You can find this in the second column.

Remember that the actual start date of your season will depend on your school’s class, and we’ve simply used the approximate dates for sectionals for states which use a class system, it’s also worth remembering that your season really depends on you and how far your team progresses in the tournament.

2019-2020

Abbrev

State

Boys/Girls

Coaching

Begins

Sectional

Ends

AL

Alabama

Both

21-Oct

7-Nov

3-Feb

1-Mar

AK

Alaska

Both

4-Dec

19-Dec

14-Mar

1-Apr

AZ

Arizona

Both

4-Nov

25-Nov

13-Feb

1-Mar

AR

Arkansas

Both

After FB (11/3)

10-Nov

2-Feb

8-Mar

CA

California

Girls

29-Oct

19-Nov

13-Feb

10-Mar

Boys

29-Oct

19-Nov

12-Feb

10-Mar

CO

Colorado

Both

18-Nov

2-Dec

23-Feb

9-Mar

CT

Connecticut

Both

5-Dec

19-Dec

9-Mar

23-Mar

DE

Delaware

Both

11-Nov

4-Dec

3-Mar

15-Mar

FL

Florida

Both

4-Nov

25-Nov

8-Feb

8-Mar

GA

Georgia

Both

15-Oct

8-Nov

17-Feb

1-Mar

HI

Hawaii

Girls

4-Nov

4-Nov

27-Jan

1-Mar

Boys

11-Nov

11-Nov

10-Feb

1-Mar

ID

Idaho

Girls

4-Nov

15-Nov

20-Feb

15-Mar

Boys

15-Nov

30-Nov

Mar-19

15-Mar

IL

Illinois

Girls

4-Nov

18-Nov

20-Feb

31-Mar

Boys

11-Nov

25-Nov

24-Feb

21-Mar

IN

Indiana

Girls

21-Oct

4-Nov

4-Feb

14-Mar

Boys

11-Nov

25-Nov

3-Mar

28-Mar

IA

Iowa

Both

18-Nov

2-Dec

24-Feb

13-Mar

KS

Kansas

Both

18-Nov

5-Dec

24-Feb

14-Mar

KY

Kentucky

Both

15-Oct

2-Dec

24-Feb

10-Mar

LA

Louisiana

Both

14-Oct

18-Nov

22-Feb

14-Mar

ME

Maine

Both

18-Nov

6-Dec

23-Feb

25-Mar

MD

Maryland

Both

15-Nov

5-Dec

28-Feb

14-Mar

MA

Massachusetts

Both

4-Nov

6-Dec

23-Feb

3-Mar

MI

Michigan

Girls

11-Nov

2-Dec

2-Mar

21-Mar

Boys

18-Nov

9-Dec

9-Mar

28-Mar

MN

Minnesota

Girls

11-Nov

29-Nov

24-Feb

14-Mar

Boys

18-Nov

29-Nov

24-Feb

21-Mar

MS

Mississippi

Both

14-Oct

7-Nov

11-Feb

7-Mar

MO

Missouri

Both

3-Nov

17-Nov

1-Mar

21-Mar

MT

Montana

Both

21-Nov

6-Dec

17-Feb

14-Mar

NE

Nebraska

Both

18-Nov

25-Nov

22-Feb

3-Mar

NV

Nevada

Both

16-Nov

28-Nov

12-Feb

21-Mar

NH

New Hampshire

Girls

18-Nov

13-Dec

2-Mar

23-Mar

Boys

25-Nov

20-Dec

2-Mar

23-Mar

NJ

New Jersey

Both

25-Nov

19-Dec

13-Feb

23-Mar

NM

New Mexico

Both

18-Nov

1-Dec

6-Mar

15-Mar

NY

New York

Both

11-Nov

1-Dec

15-Mar

29-Mar

NC

North Carolina

w/ football

30-Oct

18-Nov

25-Feb

15-Mar

w/o football

16-Oct

30-Oct

25-Feb

15-Mar

ND

North Dakota

Both

25-Nov

6-Dec

28-Feb

15-Mar

OH

Ohio

Girls

25-Oct

22-Nov

10-Feb

22-Feb

Boys

1-Nov

26-Nov

17-Feb

28-Feb

OK

Oklahoma

w/ football

1-Oct

21-Nov

14-Feb

15-Mar

w/o football

1-Oct

1-Nov

14-Feb

15-Mar

OR

Oregon

Both

18-Nov

4-Dec

26-Feb

29-Mar

PA

Pennsylvania

Both

20-Nov

11-Dec

5-Mar

27-Mar

RI

Rhode Island

Both

2-Dec

11-Dec

28-Feb

15-Mar

SC

South Carolina

Both

4-Nov

2-Dec

15-Feb

7-Mar

SD

South Dakota

Both

2-Dec

13-Dec

2-Mar

21-Mar

TN

Tennessee

Both

4-Nov

25-Nov

21-Feb

21-Mar

TX

Texas

Girls

23-Oct

8-Nov

17-Feb

7-Mar

Boys

30-Oct

15-Nov

24-Feb

15-Mar

UT

Utah

Both

11-Nov

19-Nov

11-Feb

1-Mar

VT

Vermont

Girls

2-Dec

13-Dec

3-Mar

15-Mar

Boys

2-Dec

13-Dec

25-Feb

15-Mar

VA

Virginia

Both

11-Nov

2-Dec

21-Feb

15-Mar

WA

Washington

Both

18-Nov

29-Nov

7-Mar

15-Mar

WV

West Virginia

Girls

11-Nov

3-Dec

21-Feb

15-Mar

Boys

18-Nov

10-Dec

28-Feb

15-Mar

WI

Wisconsin

Girls

11-Nov

19-Nov

25-Feb

15-Mar

Boys

18-Nov

26-Nov

3-Mar

28-Mar

WY

Wyoming

Both

25-Nov

12-Dec

27-Feb

15-Mar

If you need more precise information for the season in a particular state, than it’s probably worth tracking down what high school athletic association and looking at the website. The school you follow should also have more information at their website, and it’s probably beneficial to have a look there anyway. 

Following high school basketball is a great chance to see future college and even professional basketball players developing their skills, and it’s a great way to get into the sport if you’re looking for something new. Supporting your local high school team is also great for community spirit and to get to know new people, especially if you’ve just moved to the area.

P.s MaxPreps always tracks state rankings and tournament schedules if you want to take a look.

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