Basketball England will be making some big changes to the lower end of their National League structure for the 24'/25' season, with a new division being made called the 'NBL Conference' as well as the cutting down of the current Division 3 structure.
The present format sees 77 listed teams spread across 8 regional conferences: North, North West, London, South, South East, South West, Midlands and East. For the 24'/25' season, these teams will be cut down from 77 to 40 with Basketball England's new format which includes:
- A new pool system with 10 teams per pool instead of regional conferences (Pool 1, Pool 2, Pool 3, Pool 4).
- 4 D3 teams being promoted to D2, leaving the remaining 36 teams plus four relegated D2 teams in the newly structured D3.
- The NBL Conference, which will see the teams that don't make the top 36 in D3 being relegated down to the new division, which will be a stepping stone for those looking to make the transition from Local League, to National League.
These changes have big implications for this season. Whilst many may have thought that at the worst, a finish below the top 4 or 5 would only mean that the team remains in D3 for the following year, in could in fact result in relegation to the NBL Conference.
This change in structure is intended to make the battle for promotion from D3 to D2 much smoother, where one can only assume that a first place finish at the top of each Pool will result in promotion to D2, but this has yet to be confirmed by Basketball England themselves.