HINDMAN, Ky (WYMT) - A local school superintendent told WYMT that eastern Kentucky is basketball country. For the past 27 years, the WYMT Whayne Supply Mountain Basketball Classic has showcased that love for the game.
Knott County Athletic Director Cavanaugh Trent will tell you there is something special about basketball in the mountains.
"Basketball is king here. It has been for years," said Trent.
For more than 20 years, the Mountain Classic tournament has united fans and players all for a good cause.
"It does a wonderful thing for giving scholarships to our local kids to go on to the next level to go to college and it also provides some great basketball throughout the week," said Trent.
The match-ups are not only enjoyed in the stands however. Viewers can also watch the tournament live from their homes on WYMT. Tournament coordinator Jim Frasure said that this area was ahead of its time in that respect.
"Certainly to have their game on live TV was forerunner, really. You see ESPN and other schools do stuff like that with live TV in high school now but we were really some of the first to do that," said Frasure.
At the end of the day those involved with the Classic stress this event is about so much more than buzzer beating baskets.
"I think the Mountain Classic certainly personifies what SOAR is trying to do in building communities, working together and people working together," said Frasure.
Frasure said in 27 years, the tournament has raised more than $3,000,000 for scholarships.
"We've got to understand that two or three students from each school end up with a thousand dollar scholarship as a result of this," said Frasure.
But at its core, folks said this event is so much more than just basketball.
It is about teaming up as towns.
"We love when this tournament comes here. Our community supports it. We get behind it and people just line up to work to support us in this tournament," said Trent.
WYMT will cover games from the tournament all week.