The face of hope.
While Mark Emmert is mostly content to be verbally abused on Twitter, NBA commissioner Adam Silver is now stepping up to say that changing the league’s age limit from 19 to 20 is now a “top priority.”
Silver’s zeal in getting this done will likely be one of the dominating stories of this basketball offseason, because while it won’t take effect for this year’s recruiting class (Karl Towns, Jr. will still be safe to go to the NBA after next year), it could be around as early as 2016. For college hoops fans, this has the potential to change the face of the sport. So how are folks handling the news that this is a serious topic of discussion? About like you’d expect: mostly okay, but with lots of drama from the people that stir up that sort of thing.
Skip Bayless was vehemently opposed to the proposition on ESPN’s “First Take,” saying “This is America,” and that the rule is “unconstitutional.” I’m not quite sure he knows that “The right to hoop” isn’t exactly in our first ten amendments. Yes, he was probably talking about Title VII, but does that provision say that employers can’t require “two years’ experience” for positions when seeking candidates? Does that mean it’s unconstitutional for a job opening to require a college degree? Mandating a postponement in your chosen professional career is IN NO WAY unconstitutional if the professionals who regulate that career believe it’s necessary for the good of all involved. Then again, Skip might just be playing the troll. Buuuut I doubt it.
Former coach Avery Johnson is in support of the rule, and would even implement a higher limit of 3 years in college, like the NFL does. He also supported Calipari in saying that “[A]nytime a player can spend three years under Tom Izzo, Coach Cal, Larry Brown, you’re gonna get a player that’s much more NBA-ready. … They know what it takes to get a guy NBA-ready.”
What does your average viewer want? SportsNation answered that question pretty easily:
Regardless of what the talking heads and basketball fans think, this really is in the hands of Silver and the National Basketball Players Association. The NCAA wants it, the NBA owners’ majority wants it, and Adam Silver wants it. The power to negotiate is now within the NBPA, and we’ll see if the NBA and others can offer up enough incentives to get the rule changed.