Independent Basketball Association

Independent Basketball Association
Sport Basketball
Founded October 2011
Inaugural season 2011-12
No. of teams 8
Country United States
Continent FIBA Americas (Americas)
Most recent
St. Louis Trotters (Spring 2017)
Most titles Kankakee County Soldiers (6)
Official website

The Independent Basketball Association (IBA) is a semi-professional men's basketball league that began play in the fall of 2011. The six charter members were Battle Creek Knights, Chicago Redline, Gary Splash, Kankakee County Soldiers, Lake County Stars and Rockford Riverdawgs.[1]

IBA play two separate seasons each calendar year: a Spring season (March–June) and a Fall season (September–January). Teams compete in one or both league competitions.

Commissioner of the IBA is Barry Bradford, president of the Kankakee County Soldiers.


The first league championship (2011–12) was won by the Kankakee County Soldiers, who also won the 2012 Spring season championship.

In the Spring of 2012 the league expanded beyond its midwest footprint, adding a total of seven teams: Albany Legends, Kenosha Ballers, Lansing Capitals, Los Angeles Lightning, Malibu Pirates, Springfield Xpress[2] and St. Louis Trotters.

The Holland Dream were added to the IBA for its third season in 2012-13, bringing the league total to 14 teams.

IBA and PBL joined forces in 2013, but the merger was short-lived. Travel issues, questions of league rules and other issues were too much to overcome and the two parted ways[3] before the end of the Spring season.

2013-14 began with the addition of the Windy City Blazers, who played previously as the Windy City Monsters in the ABA. Grand Rapids Fusion and Markham City Racers entered league play for the 2014 Spring season.

In the Fall season of 2014-15 four teams (Binghamton Pioneers, Jersey G-Force, Kansas City Kryptonite, and Toronto 3D) played a partial schedule in anticipation of full league membership in 2015. CyFair Cobras, Houston Xperience and Louisiana Soul also were to compete as "branding teams" in the Fall season. None played an IBA game.

In December 2014 Schenectady Legends captured their first IBA championship, defeating Kenosha 154-137.[4] Albany High School graduate Lloyd "Pooh" Johnson score an IBA championship game record 61 points and was named the game MVP.[5]

Kankakee County won their league-best sixth championship in the Fall of 2015 by avenging their finals loss to St. Louis for the Spring title.


Former teams

^ = affiliate members (did not compete for championship)


Season Champion Runner-up Result
2011 Fall Kankakee County Soldiers Gary Splash 2-0 (best-of 3 series)
2012 Spring Kankakee County Soldiers Albany Legends 150-116
2012 Fall Kankakee County Soldiers Battle Creek Knights 2-1 (best-of 3 series)
2013 Spring Kankakee County Soldiers Gary Splash 116-99
2013 Fall Kankakee County Soldiers St. Louis Trotters 118-112
2014 Spring Grand Rapids Fusion Markham City Racers 104-92[6]
2014 Fall Schenectady Legends Kenosha Ballers 154-137
2015 Spring St. Louis Trotters Kankakee County Soldiers 100-85
2015 Fall Kankakee County Soldiers St. Louis Trotters 95-81
2016 Spring Kenosha Ballers St. Louis Trotters 87-83
2016 Fall Kenosha Ballers Milwaukee Falcons 117-98
2017 Spring St. Louis Trotters Windy City Blazers 123-116


Season League MVP Defensive Player of the Year Coach of the Year General Manager of the Year
2011 Fall Ryan Edwards, Kankakee County Soldiers Chris Wesby, Gary Splash Barry Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers Melvin Smith, Rockford Riverdawgs
2012 Fall Billy Baptist, Kankakee County Soldiers Thomas Cobbs, Kenosha Ballers Terry Sare, Battle Creek Knights Barry Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers
2013 Fall Ryan Edwards, Kankakee County Soldiers Willie Davis, St. Louis Trotters Harold Webster, St. Louis Trotters Barry Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers
2014 Fall Lloyd Johnson, Schenectady Legends Nicholas Reed, St. Louis Trotters Scott Knapp, Schenectady Legends Mike Ceolho, Schenectady Legends
2015 Fall Jay Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers Barry Bradford, Kankakee County Soldiers
2016 Spring Nicholas Reed, St. Louis Trotters Thomas Cobbs, Kenosha Ballers Tony Moore, Kenosha Ballers Tony Moore, Kenosha Ballers
2016 Fall Devron Bostick, Kenosha Ballers Thomas Cobbs, Kenosha Ballers Richard Moe, Milwaukee Falcons


  1. "Battle Creek Knights to join new league". USbasket. Retrieved 13 July 2011.
  2. "New basketball league brings hoops to Springfield". Illinois Times. Retrieved 12 April 2012.
  3. "The nasty breakup and the online sniping". Times Union. 3 June 2013.
  4. "Schenectady Legends Win First IBA Championship". USbasket. 14 December 2014.
  5. "Knapp goes undefeated in first season as coach". The Daily Gazette. 17 December 2014.
  6. "Grand Rapids Fusion are Spring Champions". USbasket. Retrieved 9 June 2014.
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