Red Carpet Basketball Classic set for Saturday

Published 8:00 am Friday, January 18, 2019

Before a single game is played, the 2019 Red Carpet Basketball Classic has been eventful.

The daylong event featuring all four Warren County high schools has undergone a venue change and two tweaks to the schedule in the past month. With that in the rearview mirror, the Classic is set to tip off Saturday morning at 9 when St. Aloysius takes on Greenville-St. Joseph in a girls-boys doubleheader.

The latest twist in the lead up to this year’s Red Carpet Classic came last week when Warren Central and Shaw canceled their boys game because both teams had too many games scheduled for this season.

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The Mississippi High School Activities Association limits teams to 28 regular-season games, including tournaments. Shaw scheduled too many games and had to drop one from its schedule.

Warren Central coach Bruce Robinson said Shaw’s coach informed him of the situation early last week. After checking their own schedule, WC’s coaching staff realized a four-game run to the Jackson Public Schools Tournament championship game in late December would have put them over the limit by one game.

With Shaw backing out, and every other team having a full schedule, Robinson said the easiest solution was to simply not find another opponent.

“When we won those four games in the JPS, that put us over the limit so we were going to have to drop a game somewhere,” Robinson said. “I hate not playing in the Red Carpet, but with Shaw dropping out I don’t want to be on probation either. When Shaw dropped out it made it a lot easier on us.”

The loss of that game dropped the Red Carpet Classic slate from the usual eight games to seven. Another tweak was made to the schedule for the second half of the session, with Warren Central’s girls’ team facing Columbus in between two games featuring Vicksburg High and South Delta.

The Classic was also moved across town earlier in the process, from Vicksburg High to Warren Central. The two schools take turns hosting the event, but construction that is beginning at VHS raised concerns about parking, security and other logistical issues, and in December the Red Carpet Bowl committee opted to move it across town. Renovations at Warren Central aren’t scheduled to begin until later this year.

Despite all the behind the scenes maneuvering, the games will go on as scheduled. St. Al and Greenville-St. Joe’s girls tip things off at 9 a.m., followed by the schools’ boys’ teams at 10:15.

Porter’s Chapel and Rebul Academy play a doubleheader starting at 11:30, and then Vicksburg High and South Delta meet in a girls’ game at 2 p.m.
Warren Central and Columbus will play a girls’ game at 3:15 p.m., and the boys’ game between Vicksburg and South Delta wraps things up at 4:30.

Admission is $7 and is good for all of the games.

Proceeds from the event benefit the Red Carpet Bowl scholarship fund. Two $750 scholarships will be awarded to graduating seniors at each Warren County high school. Application forms for the scholarships are available from guidance counselors at each school.

Applicants must also provide a list of all extracurricular activities and write a 500-word essay. Applications should be mailed to Dr. Robert M. Abraham, 3038 Indiana Ave., Vicksburg, MS 39180.

The deadline to apply is Feb. 28.

Saturday, at Warren Central
Admission: $7
9 a.m. – St. Aloysius vs. Greenville-St. Joseph
11:30 a.m. – Porter’s Chapel vs. Rebul Academy
2 p.m. – Vicksburg vs. South Delta
10:15 a.m. – St. Aloysius vs. Greenville-St. Joseph
12:45 p.m. – Porter’s Chapel vs. Rebul Academy
3:15 p.m. – Warren Central vs. Columbus
4:30 p.m. – Vicksburg vs. South Delta

About Ernest Bowker

Ernest Bowker is The Vicksburg Post's sports editor. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post's sports staff since 1998, making him one of the longest-tenured reporters in the paper's 140-year history. The New Jersey native is a graduate of LSU. In his career, he has won more than 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.

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