Coronavirus taking bite out of Allen Deep’s usual basketball showcase schedule

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Saturday, January 9, 2021 | 6:39 PM


Basketball season in western Pennsylvania would not seem complete without the showcase events organized by Allen Deep.

His various charity events, from multiple team shootouts across the region to the season-capping Roundball Classic at Geneve, have become seasonal staples.

The WPIAL resumed on-court action Friday, but this unusual season likely will have a noticeable void as it progresses: Deep’s events will not be on the schedule.

His wrap-around slate was not infallible against covid-19, either, and he had to call off 12 weekend events.

“We are canceling each event on a weekly basis, so that all teams may succeed in rescheduling each other at home or away,” Deep said. “No schools, colleges or universities are allowing multi-team events, as they are the deciding factor in all or our showcases.”

There are no plans, Deep said, to have off-court fundraisers to make up the differences.

Canceled were The Tip-Off at Lincoln Park, The Holiday Bash at Butler, The Showdown at Sharon, the Ron Galbreath Classic at Westminster, The Clash at New Castle, The Challenge at Chatham University, The Shootout at Seton Hill, The Invitational at North Allegheny, The Slam at Sewickley and The Bash with The Bronx at Geneva.

The Shootout at Seton Hill, which often drew up to a dozen teams, benefited St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Deep’s crown jewel, though, is the Roundball Classic, and that event still has flickering hopes of happening, Deep said.

“The Roundball is being discussed right now,” he said. “Our plan is to possibly schedule the games for May, and, God willing, the virus will be less restricting at that time.”

Deep is putting together a list of potential Roundball players in each classification in case the event can happen. Two years ago, more than 200 players were selected for a seven-game schedule. He chooses top seniors from the WPIAL, City League and District 10.

Last year’s event was canceled in April when the virus began to take hold.

“Possibly we can arrange some type of competition for May at Geneva College,” Deep said. “Let’s keep our fingers crossed.”

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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