Serving Kentucky's Schools and Student Athletes Since 1917

01/19/21 – Dates Announced for Boys’ and Girls’ Sweet Sixteen®

January 19, 2021 2020-2021 News Releases



The dates for the 2021 Boys’ and Girls’ Sweet Sixteen® State Basketball Tournaments have been set, with the boys’ tournament taking place March 31 through April 3, followed by the Mingua Beef Jerky Girls’ Sweet 16® on April 7-10. Each tournament will be played over four days at Rupp Arena, with the semifinals and championship played on the final day, as a one-year accommodation due to the events being scheduled around Easter Sunday. The four-day format was standard for the state basketball tournament for several years prior to the 2013 Boys’ Sweet 16® when a statewide legislatively-initiated panel recommended separating the prior semifinal/championship Saturday schedule into two days.

At this time, attendance for both tournaments will be restricted to 15% of capacity within the areas of the arena in-use. Details will be announced in February regarding the ticketing process, but all-session tickets will be limited for 2021 in order to properly maintain social distancing and allow for the fans of competing teams to have an opportunity to attend. All prior ticket holders will retain their ticket records and priority, and have the ability to renew into the same seats from 2020 in future years.

“We know that there are many who would like to see things resume full-speed ahead immediately, but that is neither responsible nor practical right now. This is the same situation our University partners and friends have found themselves in this season, so it isn’t all that unexpected,” said KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tackett. “Ever since the 2020 events were shut down and ultimately canceled, we have all hoped for the 2021 tournaments to be a renewal and rebirth. Unfortunately, that timeline isn’t feasible right now. We will work with our partners at Rupp Arena, the City of Lexington, and various health entities to maximize the opportunities for this year’s event and ensure an optimal experience for the participating teams and members of their community.”


About the Kentucky High School Athletic Association
The Kentucky High School Athletic Association was organized in 1917 and is the agency designated by the Kentucky Department of Education to manage high school athletics in the Commonwealth. The Association is a voluntary nonprofit 501(c)3 organization made up of 284 member schools both public and non-public. The KHSAA awards 215 state championships to 51 teams and 164 individuals in 13 sports and 6 sport-activities, funds catastrophic insurance coverage for its more than 106,000 rostered member school student-athletes, provides coaching education and sports safety programs for more than 12,000 coaches, and licenses and facilitates the distribution of training material for over 4,000 contest officials.


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