James C. Haile State Basketball Tournament

The James C. Haile State Basketball Tournament is a Tribute to

Coach James C. Haile

July 16, 1938 – May 14, 1984

The year 1974 was a very important year for seventh and eighth grade basketball in Tennessee. That year James C. Haile and Bill Williamson, coaches at Central Middle School, established the “Mid-State Invitational Tournament.” These men envisioned a statewide tournament that would focus attention on middle school basketball.

Since the beginning, Coach Haile was an important contributor. Not only did he spend countless hours organizing the tournament, but his teams participated in the tournament for many years. On five separate occasions, Coach Haile’s teams advanced to the championship game.

In 1976, the tournament’s success prompted the changing of its name to the “State Invitational Tournament.” Then in 1983, the tournament was moved to the campus of Middle Tennessee Christian School. The tournament has become the oldest continual state middle school tournament in Tennessee.

Coach Haile continued to work long and hard for the betterment of seventh and eighth grade basketball in Tennessee. Those people who knew him will never forget his untiring efforts to help young people.

Because of his dedication and hard work, the name of the tournament was changed on February 18, 1984, to the “James C. Haile State Invitational Tournament.”

In 2010, the James C. Haile State Tournament expanded the tournament by offering a 5th & 6th grade level.

The James C. Haile State Tournament surpassed the century mark with 107 teams in 2015. The tournament is now the oldest and largest state middle school basketball tournament in the state of Tennessee averaging over 100 teams per year.

Please visit our tournament website – jameschaile.com

Coach James C. Haile