Reports have been released today from sources stating that Emmanuel Mudiay has opted out of playing college basketball and has instead signed a one-year deal worth more than $1 million. Mudiay had previously committed to play at SMU, over Kentucky and Kansas, however changed his mind for a reason which isn’t entirely known by the public. Some think it has to do with financial problems at home, while others believe it had to do with academic eligibility issues due to his two years spent at Prime Prep.
While rumors of academic eligibility have come into question, it is hard to believe he would not have been declared eligible before the season started. Prime Prep alums Jordan Mickey and Karviar Shephard both were able to enroll and were cleared academically after getting a waiver through the eligibility center.At the same time, lots of players have had had family issues, but have still decided to attend college and wait for the money.
When I first heard this news, I thought he made a stupid decision. However, after thinking about it, lI was surprised this hasn’t become a trend over the years since the NBA started the age rule. When you think about it, in the mind of a high school senior, the pros would definitely outweigh the cons of playing overseas.
While it would be hard to adapt to a new country and culture in such a short time with no family around, you would also be bringing in almost $20k a week (That number makes me depressed) and have all the freedom a kid could ask for. Not to mention no more ‘pop quizzes’ or the stress that comes with school. Best of all, you wouldn’t have the NCAA breathing down your neck every decision you make.
Seems like a solid deal. So why hasn’t this become more of a trend among American born players? While we are on the subject, can we expect more of this if the NBA increases the rule to having to play two years of college before you are eligible for the draft?
No. Because no one does basketball quite like they do in colleges across America.
Players who head directly overseas after high school are just thrown into the ‘bullpen’, with only training they received in high school. Like the NBA, there is little chance for ‘practice’ and proper training, other than what you learn in games.
The future college basketball stars are smart enough to know this.
Playing a year of division one basketball prepares players for the NBA far better than playing overseas. College basketball has some of the best up-and-coming players in the world, with the best competition and plenty of practice time to learn everything they need to know before going to the NBA.
In reality, while going overseas would be the easiest decision, the best decision would be to stay in the US and learn proper basketball by the best coaches the world has to offer. While many think the kids coming out of high school are immature, I believe it is a pretty mature decision to not follow the money and stay around to learn basketball the correct way.
Could you imagine a Kentucky team if all the nation’s best players went to play overseas? That would make for some pretty boring basketball. We should be thankful there isn’t a trend of this and hope that Mudiay doesn’t start one.