So the news is out. Donte’ Greene is leaving SU and entering the NBA draft after a solid, but hardly spectacular, freshman season, we can debate the effect this will have on next season’s Orangemen all day – I’ll leave that to everyone else. Before I get into this rant let me say that the intent of it isn’t directed at any one player/school/coach or whatever – rather it towards the entire college basketball landscape.
One and done…I hate this, I hate this, and if you couldn’t already tell -- I hate this practice of kids “attending” a college or university for one year and then jumping to the NBA. It has me angered as a fan and honestly, I feel abit used. I’m a fan, which is short for fanatic, of college athletics, and being a fan is a commitment that I don’t take lightly…when a player commits to “my” team, I expect to live and die with him every game, every season and after his four years are up, I want to look back and remember the great moments, huge victories and the impact on the program… every program has had guys who have contributed to that link between fans and their teams, those are the guys that make college basketball great.
The NBA minimum age requirement has to go. If a kid thinks he ready for the NBA and he’s only 18…let him test the ropes and find out if he is or not. The idea that the NBA/NCAA is protecting these players from a potentially bad decision is an absolute joke. Most of the players in this group have been catered to for years, thanks to the AAU shams and unscrupulous Private H.S. administrators. Oh and lets not forget the college administrators as well, who can always find a way to accommodate a talented player. Why are players forced to enroll in college, some of whom are never going to pass a class, let alone earn a degree. There is no law that says everyone needs to go to college, if someone wants to be a pro basketball player, so be it – he should be able to attempt that, without having to go to college.
Coaches, you are just a guilty as everyone else. The fact that you whore your programs out to these players that have self-interest in mind makes me sick – college basketball is about teams, not individuals. The NBA is about individuals and its reason #1 why I’d choose to watch a Northern Arizona – Weber State game over a Spurs – Celtics game every last time. Also, the idea that coaches/media types try to sell me that kids are at least “getting a great education while they are here” is blasphemous. Universities these days offer programs that invoke more laughter than learning.
Maybe my expectations are too high, or maybe those in today’s sports society are too low. I understand that college athletics is big business and as with any big business, comes a smaller level of morality and honorability. Freshman ineligibility…maybe what was once old can be new again…end of rant. Carry on.