Here we are a few days after the Memphis NCAA allegations broke and I am completely and totally beaten down by any story or piece of news regarding the case. Call me crazy, but I just don’t care about the Memphis situation. I really don’t. As John Clay said earlier, the supposed violations did not happen at Kentucky so it’s not a Kentucky issue. Because of this theory (and because I wear a W.W.J.C.D. bracelet), I am no longer paying attention to this story whatsoever. Seriously.
But, one thing I think we’ve failed to take a proper look at with the what seems to be a large outbreak of NCAA investigations is if it’s time for the NBA’s one-year rule to finally disappear. I was never a big proponent of making a kid go to college if he felt like he could go make some money professionally (I would have gone to the New York Times straight out of high school if they would have upped the signing bonus), but I think we’ve reached the breaking point of this little David Stern experiment. Sure, it’s great for the NBA. Teams no longer have to gamble on the potential of a guy who is beating up on 1A schools in Georgia with the number one pick. They can just see him get exposed in college for a year before investing millions of dollars in him. But, it’s killing college basketball.
What the NCAA is left with more and more lately are kids who are going to college because they are obligated to do so-and it’s not like they’re still no trying to get paid. They’re just using it as a one-stop audition and not really concerned with what nonpunishable infractions they’ve created. They’re letting the types they strive to keep away from college athletics put a big fat thumb on the NCAA motto of “Play by the Rules” and smudge it out. Basically, it’s turning the NCAA into the AAU mess that it seems to despise so much.
I don’t know if Derrick Rose orchestrated a stand-in for his SAT or if he asked someone to doctor his grades. But, I do know that both would have been a non-issue if there wasn’t a one-year NBA rule. I don’t know if OJ Mayo was collecting money while he was in school. But, I know he wouldn’t be worried about 20k or so if he wasn’t being blocked from his livelihood. Of course, this doesn’t excuse their behavior whatsoever. I just don’t think it’s fair that the only kids who will actually be punished are the rule-abiding student-athletes left in their wake. The ones who aren’t millionaires. You know, the ones who will “go professional in other fields”.
Ok, rant over.
Debate and discuss below.