Once installed, a basketball hoop will remain standing almost indefinitely, commencing a slow entropy towards rust and abandonment. It might stand years or even generations before time and weather have their way. Kids will grow up and fly the nest, but the backboard stays behind, a constant reminder of past camaraderie, solitary hours spent perfecting form, or missed opportunities. Always beckoning…take a shot. The hoop is just there, and in the state of Indiana, the hoops are everywhere.
Indiana’s obsession with the sport goes back to the early 1900’s. Vestiges of legends both half-forgotten and still in-the-making mark the landscape. With the Indiana University Hoosiers currently ranked #1 in college basketball for the first time in twenty years, "Hoosier Hysteria" has returned. I fell under the spell myself while studying at the college years ago, but never gave much thought to why this particular sport held such power over this particular place, until now.
I set out to photograph the footprint of basketball in places where it offers a short or potentially long-term escape from the confines of everyday life. Where it offers a way out of boredom or a way out of town. Where it offers a way to build bonds and rivalries. And often, where it's simply a way to pass the time when there's nothing else to do.