HISTORY OF THE IHSBCA NORTH / SOUTH ALL-STAR SERIES

The idea for an all-star series was first considered in the fall of 1974. Members of the Executive Board were aware of a successful series conducted in Ohio and the Indiana series was patterned after it.

Tom Bradley then the coach at North Central volunteered to be the director of the first IHSBCA all-star series to be held in 1975. Under Coach Bradley’s guiding hand the first All-Star series attracted 2500 to Bush Stadium in Indianapolis. Coaching the South All-Stars were Clark Froning of Indpls Marshall, Orval Huffman of Bedford, and Roger Schroeder of Indpls. Marshall. Playing for the South in the July 26 twi-light doubleheader were Robin Courtney and Andy Rice, both are now head baseball coaches in Evansville. Jim Turner of Logansport, Jim Anderson of Hammond Noll, and Larry Jones of Logansport lead the North team to a doubleheader victory. Every series since has been a three game series so there will always be a series winner.

Each year a committee is appointed to select the North squad and another committee selects the South team. During the first series one school had five members named to a squad. This lead to the adoption of a rule which limits a school to one member unless unusual situations develop. Players who are drafted by professional baseball, but have not signed are automatically selected. Players that are voted to the First Team All-State get strong consideration. The division between North and South was first set at SR 28. A change was made in 1988 which pitted the South Bend and Lafayette semi-states against the Jasper and Richmond semi-states. When class baseball arrived the dividing line was set at SR 32 and 36.

The annual summer classic is moved around the state as communities bid to host it. Six time the series has been hosted by Jasper, with LaPorte, South Bend, Indiana State, and Ball State each having the series twice. The 1979 series in Jasper coincided with the opening of the IHSBCA Hall of Fame which is located in Jasper. All players names and team photos are part of the displays in the Hall of Fame. Changes have been added over the years, such as the homerun hitting contest on Sunday, a wooden bat game, and all games are now nine innings. The Saturday games see the players wear special all-star uniforms then they don their varied high school uniforms for the Sunday showcase. 1981 saw the first MVP chosen and honored by McMillian Sports.

Thirteen former all-stars have appeared in major league play. One has been a major league coach, while another all-star now plays in the NBA. Each year as one watches the series unfold you wonder which of the fifty players will be the next to appear in the BIGS or become a world class citizen.

Appearing in the Big Leagues have been; Kevin Brown, Steve Ontiveros, Brian Dorsett, Matt Kinzer, Chad Dunwoody, Walt Terrell, Scott Rolen, Dave Doster, Jamie Allensworth, Hal Morris, Eric Wedge, Lloyd McClendon, Jeff Samardzija, and Richie Lewis. Working as a major league coach is Mark Riggins, while Brian Evans is in the NBA.

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