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Basketball goal vs basketball hoop

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In my picture book about KY, I had a sentence that said, "Beth has a basketball goal in her driveway."

My NY editor changed 'goal' to 'hoop.' I was fine with that, until I saw someone from New England use 'hoop.' I would never say 'hoop' myself, and so I started wondering if it's a regional difference.

Please tell me which you use and where you're from. If it's a KY thing (and not just me), or even a Southern thing, then I think I'll ask my editor to have us switch it back to 'goal.'

Thank you for any feedback you can give me.
#1 - September 17, 2015, 08:45 PM

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Ev, to me a hoop is a basket--a physical object. A goal is a two or three point score--an intangible thing.

I can understand why a Univ. of Kentucky fan doesn't have much experience with goals.  :grin3


ETA: Okay, I really enjoyed typing that, but on further reflection, I think I call it a "goal," too. (I would say, "Ev, you run down to the far goal and I'll inbound the ball." Does that sound right to you? It does to me.)

I ran a quick search and came up with this. Don't know if it's accurate, but it says that a cheap set is a hoop, and an expensive set is a goal. Course, they're trying to sell them to you. http://www.firstteaminc.com/basketball-goal-vs-basketball-hoop.php

My Dad grew up in Southern Indiana, so his vocab is geographically very near yours. He also has some ins in the Indiana basketball community. (They live in Bloomington.) May I ask him what he thinks? I don't want to violate any Board privacy.

Say--a quick call to the UK athletic director might do the trick, too. You've got the media credentials to ask, and if the UK AD or bball coach agrees with you, that's good enough for anybody.

But my crack about goals still stands.  :grin3
#2 - September 17, 2015, 10:07 PM
« Last Edit: September 17, 2015, 10:26 PM by dewsanddamps »
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In my world (I'm in MA, grew up in CT, but "my world" is living with super sporty 12yo and hubsy) basketball has a hoop. I'm trying to think of a context where I'd use goal, but can't! Like, I'd say, hey you scored 8 points! But wouldn't say, hey, you scored 4 goals! Things like..."drive to the hoop," etc. When I hear "goal" it's associated with football or soccer.

Katie's example didn't sound right to me. Sorry, Katie!  :flowers2

But, that is in my world. I'm no expert!
#3 - September 18, 2015, 04:36 AM

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Ev,

In my world (Missouri, with a 15 y-o boy who plays basketball), goal is the physical object through which one would "shoot hoops."

Jody

Dews,  :dr
#4 - September 18, 2015, 05:18 AM
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We say hoop here in the Carolinas but also in WA.

Dewsy is bad. :lol4

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#5 - September 18, 2015, 05:58 AM
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I've never lived in the South, but it's hoop everywhere in the States that I have lived (CA, NJ, WA, and PA).
#6 - September 18, 2015, 06:12 AM

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 :lol5 Katie, you're so much fun!

Yes, I had already looked at that site before I posted here. It's clear that they themselves (they're located in KS) prefer 'goal'--"A complete basketball system consists of the same general parts, whether it is an in ground basketball goal, a portable basketball goal, or an adjustable portable goal."

I had also read a discussion online where people were disagreeing about what the thing should be called, but nobody said where they lived, so it wasn't helping me.

By all means, please ask your dad what he thinks.  I have a nephew who was the Wildcat mascot for UK when he was in college, and I've been trying to call and ask him the question, but haven't gotten through to him yet. (Just a funny side note, when his son was about two and a half and I was babysitting him, we were using a set of different colored geometric blocks to fill in puzzle outlines. He, quite seriously, assured me that he couldn't use any of the orange blocks, because orange was Tennessee's color. Yep, we here in KY take our basketball very seriously.  :grin3 )

I appreciate all of you who have chimed in with your responses. It's interesting and helpful to hear the differences.

#7 - September 18, 2015, 06:47 AM

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(Just a funny side note, when his son was about two and a half and I was babysitting him, we were using a set of different colored geometric blocks to fill in puzzle outlines. He, quite seriously, assured me that he couldn't use any of the orange blocks, because orange was Tennessee's color. Yep, we here in KY take our basketball very seriously.  :grin3 )


 :lol4  What a great story!!!
#8 - September 18, 2015, 07:03 AM

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You have a lot of great resources here, Ev. Just to put my .02 in, my guys are college bb fanatics and  have traveled throughout the Big Ten. I have never heard "goal" used in this way. AFAIK, it's a hoop. Let me text my son and ask what he thinks. He's a NBA D-League broadcaster.

Eta: My son says if universality is the objective, he'd recommend hoop. But if authenticity to a region is more important, go ahead with goal.
#9 - September 18, 2015, 08:46 AM
« Last Edit: September 18, 2015, 09:04 AM by mrh »
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Hoop. Definitely hoop. California.

People also refer to the basket as in He's under the basket. Never goal.
#10 - September 18, 2015, 09:08 AM

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Ev, that's a wonderful story about your great nephew!  :applause

My dad--who grew up just over the river, but on the correct side of it--says they usually called it a basket, but hoop or goal were also used. He did say he's certain that whatever it's called in Kentucky is wrong.  :grin3

You know, hearing everybody else be so sure that it's never called a goal--hoop as preferred--makes me think you should call it a goal. Because I've definitely heard that, a lot. Did my sentence sound okay to you? The fact that it sounded wacky to Connecticut Jenna kind of reinforces that.

"Hoop" would make it more universal/standard, but that's not the point of this book.

Could you ask folks at your church what they use? And maybe give a sentence, because there may be subtle differences in when the terms are used. (I would say "I made a basket" but not "I made a hoop." "I ran into the goal" or "I ran into the basket" but not "I ran into the hoop." Hmm--I think of "hoop" as being synonymous with "rim.") David A. understands words, and also lives where people honor the bad kitty. Maybe he'd have a thought.
#11 - September 18, 2015, 09:37 AM
« Last Edit: September 18, 2015, 09:39 AM by dewsanddamps »
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I've also never heard it called 'goal.' My husband, dad, brother, and son all love basketball (and brother and son play[ed]), and the common terms are "he scored a basket," "he's under the basket," "he's driving to the hoop." And even though it's technically a field goal when they score outside the key, most people around here just call it a '3-pointer.'

But we're in CO...though I've rarely heard it called 'goal' while being forced to watch pro bball (ad nauseum) on TV. As in, "he's standing near the goal."
#12 - September 18, 2015, 09:59 AM
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I really appreciate the feedback! You ladies are wonderful.

Just for clarification, I'm asking what you would call the thing out in your yard or beside your driveway--the thing that includes the pole, the backboard, the rim and the net.

I finally got in touch with my nephew who was the UK Wildcat when he was in college. He said (without hesitation) in KY it's called a basketball goal.

I asked my son, who's lived all his 35 years in KY and went to UK. He said he's heard both. If it's a rim and net that's nailed to the side of a barn, then it's more likely to be called a hoop. If it's the whole thing, then it's more likely to be called a goal.

Marcia, thanks for checking with your son. (Great resource!)

And Katie, thanks for asking your dad. (I can see where you got your great sense of humor. Assuming you weren't misquoting him. :naughty ) Yes, your sentence--"Ev, you run down to the far goal and I'll inbound the ball."--sounded fine to me. Thank you for your other good suggestions of folks to ask.

As for the action during a game, yes, Robin, we'd be likely to say things like "he scored a basket," "he's under the basket," "it's a 3-pointer," and even "he's driving to the hoop." Not "he scored a goal." But the thing out in your backyard is usually a basketball goal if you're in KY. (At least, that's seeming to be the consensus and not just my own personal way of saying things.)

Thank you to those of you who made the distinction between regionally correct vs. universal. I think I need to ask my editor which she's wanting (when she gets back from her honeymoon!).
#13 - September 18, 2015, 11:55 AM
« Last Edit: September 18, 2015, 11:58 AM by Ev »

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Great story about your nephew.

We've heard the kids talking and playing and it's always hoop or basket, referring to the thing itself and for scoring, points or basket. The only time I've heard the word goal is in reference to other sports -- soccer, lacrosse, hockey.

Vijaya
#14 - September 18, 2015, 11:56 AM
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Ev, I was not misquoting my father. He's perfectly capable of insulting Kentucky basketball on his own.  :kiss

I finally got in touch with my nephew who was the UK Wildcat when he was in college. He said (without hesitation) in KY it's called a basketball goal.

So Indiana and Kentucky basketball have something in common. I will not sleep well tonight.  :shocked
#15 - September 18, 2015, 12:04 PM
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:lol Katie.

Ev, I think it's very interesting to hear these regional differences! It was probably in a KY college game that I heard the term 'goal' too. ;)
#16 - September 18, 2015, 01:16 PM
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Ev, I was not misquoting my father. He's perfectly capable of insulting Kentucky basketball on his own.  :kiss

 :lol4  Katie, I adore you.
#17 - September 18, 2015, 01:39 PM

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Katie, I have no words in response. You and your dad are clearly two of a kind.  :lol5

#18 - September 18, 2015, 02:01 PM

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Seems like this would be kind of a cool thing to include in your book. Different parts of the country use different terms, but in Kentucky we say Goal!
#19 - September 18, 2015, 02:25 PM

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Ev, my dad contacted his good friend Bob Hammel. Bob is Indiana's authority on this. I realize that's the wrong side of the river for you, but it's darned close, and there's nobody whose opinion I'd value higher. Bob was the sports editor for the Bloomington newspaper, is a member of the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame, was chosen top sportswriter in Indiana fifteen times, and won the Curt Gowdy Award, the highest honor given to basketball writers (from the Hall of Fame).

In addition, Bob Knight once threw a chair at him and my dad.  :eek5

Bob Hammel says "goal" is preferable. He thinks "hoops" is the kind of thing people who live on the coasts think people in the Midwest say, the same way they say "Heartland," when nobody who lives there does.

And he points out that the violation is "goal-tending" not "hoop-tending." He suggests your editor look that up in the rule book.

I think that's a mic drop for Bob.  Ev 1, editor 0.  :hi5
#20 - September 18, 2015, 04:02 PM
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Here in New England the thing in the driveway is definitely a hoop. Goal makes me think of hockey.
#21 - September 18, 2015, 04:08 PM
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I have never ever heard it referred to as a goal. I've lived in SD, MN, IA, WI, and FL.
#22 - September 18, 2015, 04:19 PM
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I've never heard anyone call it a goal (in Ontario). Online and in stores they're generally called basketball systems or portable hoops (check out Walmart, Amazon, or Dick's Sporting Goods), but my friends would usually say 'backboard' (which I know is only part of it)
#23 - September 18, 2015, 04:32 PM

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I think the simplest thing to do, Ev, would be to write that she has a soccer goal in her driveway...
#24 - September 18, 2015, 04:53 PM

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I'm with those who say basket.

If I was pressed for a different word, I'd struggle. 
#26 - September 18, 2015, 06:11 PM
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Thanks bunches, everybody!  :grouphug2

 :lol4 Anne! But if you think that, you clearly don't know KY as well as Katie does.

Laurel, I agree it would be cool to include in the book, but unfortunately, I've already exceeded my word limit and Ms. Editor would not be happy.  :uhuh

Wow, Katie! That's an impressive set of credentials your dad's friend has. Please tell your dad I appreciate his checking with Bob (even if your dad does live on the wrong side of the river and feels free to insult those of us on the right side  :taunt ). Definitely a mic drop. (And I just learned tonight what that means. :applause ).

In addition, Bob Knight once threw a chair at him and my dad.
This sounds like another of your awesome stories begging to be told.  :yup
#28 - September 18, 2015, 08:05 PM

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...if universality is the objective, he'd recommend hoop. But if authenticity to a region is more important, go ahead with goal.
Ditto. (I asked DH and a neighbor, who are basketball knowledgeable.)
#29 - September 18, 2015, 08:33 PM
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In addition, Bob Knight once threw a chair at him and my dad.  :eek5

Bob only threw one chair, right? Or not?

He thinks "hoops" is the kind of thing people who live on the coasts think people in the Midwest say

But here, he's wrong. The Midwest *does* say hoops.
#30 - September 18, 2015, 08:46 PM
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