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YouTube Gold: The Best High School Gyms

Some may be better, but we’ll rock with Chinle!

High School Basketball Team Pep Talk
The South High School basketball coach gives his team a pep talk before a game. The Minneapolis team was to play in Detroit Lakes, Northern Minnesota.
Photo by © Minnesota Historical Society/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty Images

Most of us here are college basketball fans and so we’ve gotten used to discussing college barns. Thing is, some communities really have gone all out to build nice high school arenas.

This video discusses some of the best and it will come as no shock to you that several of them are in Indiana, where high school basketball is the state’s unofficial religion.

One is in El Paso, home of the Eastwood Troopers. It’s a bit bright for our taste but unquestionably nice. One more is in Texas, and that’s at Athens High in the city of Athens.

The final non-Hoosier gym is in Chinle, Arizona. It’s called Wildcats Den and it really is very nice. You can get a really good sense of it if you have Netflix: there’s a documentary set there called Basketball or Nothing. It’s very well done. If you haven’t seen it, you should check it out.

Other than that, it’s all Hoosiers.

Kokomo Memorial Gymnasium, which was built in 1949 seats over 5,000.

We didn’t quite catch the name of the (something) Green Dome in Terre Haute, where the West Vigo Vikings play. You may remember Terre Haute came up a time or two in the movie Hoosiers. (Checks Internet: “Jim Mann Green Dome”)

Washington is a town of 12,000 that fills a 7,090 gym every night. It’s called The Hatchet House and it’s the home of the Zeller brothers - Cody, Luke and Tyler. Tyler played for UNC and was the plodding guy Austin Rivers hit a shot over to pen his memorable chapter in the Duke-UNC rivalry.

The Spartan Bowl is in Connersville. You may remember Matt Howard from Butler. He was a Spartan.

Shelbyville boasts the William L. Garrett Gymnasium, which seats about 5,000 and has an amazing roof.

Lloyd E. Scott Gymnasium is in Muncie. Seymour High School’s pride seats 8,228. Former Georgia Tech star Craig Neal and former Notre Dame star Bonzi Wells are both from Muncie, but neither went to Seymour. However, you can be sure they both played in Scott Gymnasium.

Finally, New Castle takes their basketball quite seriously: New Castle Field House seats 9,325, approximately equal to Duke’s Cameron Indoor Stadium. Fans saw Indiana greats Steve Alford and Kent Benson played there back in the day.