Tag:College Basketball
Posted on: December 8, 2010 1:17 pm

Among other things, players want age limit at 18

Posted by Royce Young

Other than LeBron James and his Heat buddies, the biggest story of this NBA season starts with an "L" and ends with an "out". It's kind of hanging over everything. Just when we all start having fun and forget about a potential work stoppage, it rears its ugly head again. Bummer.

The basics around where the league and the players are hung up is over the salary cap situation, player salaries and revenue sharing. You know, the usual stuff.

Ken Berger of CBSSports.com dropped a bomb's worth of knowledge Wednesday updating the current situation. Included in all of that information was a small nugget about other things the players are asking for in addition to all the salary and money stuff.

They want the NBA's age-limit requirement returned to 18.

Berger says the players suggested a few non-cap related things that would "improve the game" and "benefit both our players and the league." One of those is a re-examination of the age-limit rule that currently requires players to be at least 19 years old and one year removed from their senior year of high school before they're allowed to enter the draft.

(Along with the age rule, the NBAPA is also adding this Berger says, which I found incredibly interesting: They want to enhance pension benefits for retired players, which would be paid for, in part, by a so-called exit tax on owners who sell their teams and earn capital appreciation far beyond historic levels. So when an owner that bought his team in 1973 for $19.7 million sells it for $400 million, the players want a tax on that money that would pay a pension for retired players. Anyway, just wanted to point that one out too.)

While the players want the rule back at 18 years old, they also threw in that they want to work with the league and NCAA to incentivize players to stay in school longer. I think we all rolled our eyes there together, didn't we? Stay in school kids! Money's not important! Ignore the fact we're willing to go to a lockout over it!

The age rule probably isn't as important to the players as the money related issues, but the fact it's included in their recent proposal is interesting. Feelings on the current rule is sort of split. Most think it's an NCAA rule, but it's not. It's an NBA one. While it helps college basketball in some ways by bringing star power like John Wall, Kevin Durant and Greg Oden to college, it also hurts because everyone knows they're one-and-done. Bobby Knight was one of the biggest detractors about the rule talking about how nobody has to go to class the second semester and that is creates an unfair advanatge to the big name schools and recruiters. And it's easy to see that point.

The idea behind the original creation of the requirement was to help prevent the massive busts that were coming straight from high school, thus ruining potentially solid careers. Kids that has dollar signs in their eyes and skipped a college scholarship because an agent told them they'd make millions in the NBA as a first-round draft pick. But for every DeShawn Stevenson, Jonathan Bender and Kwame Brown, there's a Kobe Bryant, LeBron James and Dwight Howard. It's always worked both ways.

And it's not some guarantee that if you go to school you won't bust. Ed O'Bannon, Robert Traylor, Stromile Swift, Marcus Fizer... lots of names there too. I guess they got an education or at least a few college credit hours out of it, but the rule doesn't guarantee anything.

Players want to be able to make money. And the fact that the NBA is preventing an 18-year-old from having the opportunity to have a job in the NBA obviously bothers the NBAPA.

It's a small issue and probably not one they're worth fighting that much for. But it's in the current proposal. The fact it's on their mind is interesting nonetheless.

But what's so ironic is that a lockout could greatly affect players like Terrence Jones from Kentucky, Harrison Barnes from North Carolina, Jared Sullinger from Ohio State and Kyrie Irving from Duke. Guys that would likely be one-and-done and headed for next June's draft. Except a lockout may make them think twice about it. They may either return to school and let the CBA stuff get settled or head to Europe for a season, especially the ones that have been tanking in their academics because they never thought they'd come back for a sophomore season. 

But remember, the NBAPA wants to educate and encourage players to stay in school. And they may be doing exactly that, only by accident.
Posted on: November 16, 2010 2:08 pm
Edited on: November 16, 2010 2:09 pm

Barkley, Kenny and Marv to work March Madness

Posted by Royce Young

March Madness is already amazing. It's pretty much the most perfect sporting event each year. College basketball itself has its issues (this is not the time to debate the NBA v. NCAA), but the tournament is what we all wait for. And of course it culminates with the Final Four, the mecca of college hoops.

And with the NCAA's expansion of the tournament, CBS has teamed with TNT to broadcast every game nationally. Good news for us. And more good news? The TNT guys will be part of it all. Yep, that means Marv Albert, Kenny Smith and Charles Barkley will all be chipping in to the NCAA tournament coverage.

President of CBS Sports Sean McManus and Turner Sports marketing executive David Levy held a press conference announcing all the changes Tuesday and Sports Business Daily was there. Asked how the Turner talent will be used McManus said, "The more we can use of Charles [Barkley], the better." Levy also said Turner is interested in expanding its coverage to regular season college basketball and football, if it makes "financial sense."

So get excited to hear Barkley talk about Kyle Singler, Harrison Barnes and probably a lot about Auburn. There's no doubt it will be good because you could have Kenny and Chuck sit behind a table and talk about their favorite 16th century poets and it would be good television.

Now if they can just put Gus Johnson, Kenny and Chuck together for a broadcast? Well, then I think all my wildest dreams will have come true.
Posted on: August 23, 2010 4:42 pm
Edited on: August 23, 2010 4:47 pm

Michael Jordan's sons spend big in Las Vegas

Posted by Royce Young

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. Well, unless you tweet about it.

The Orlando Sentinel reports Michael Jordan's sons, Marcus and Jeffrey who both play basketball at the University of Central Florida, visited Las Vegas during a weekend trip with teammate A.J. Rompza. Jeffrey posted on his Twitter page that the three UCF Knights flew to Vegas with M.J. for a fantasy basketball camp at the Mirage Report Casino that cost between $13,500 and $15,000 per person.

Obviously something seems odd there as the lines between an NBA owner communicating with his sons and friend are cloudy. Very cloudy. But while the Vegas trip in of itself is something to raise an eyebrow at, Marcus Jordan posted on his Twitter that the players' visited Haze Nightclub and Liquid Pool Lounge at Aria Hotel and Casino City Center. He tweeted: "Last night was stupid," Marcus, 20, wrote. "... 35k at Haze... Totals 50k something the whole day.. Damn!! Going to the pool again today.. Gotta relax!" Celebrity websites TerezOwens.com and TaintedVegas.com also posted about the Jordan brothers spending $56,000 in Las Vegas in one day.

I don't know a ton about a college athlete's stipend, but I'm guessing it's not in the $56,000 range, nor would they have the money to front for the basketball camp. Again, that's where lines are blurred. Obviously Michael Jordan is allowed to spend money on his children. But is he really since they are college athletes and he's an NBA owner? And of course the elephant in the room, the friend Rompza. Surely Jordan can't front that kind of money for him, can he?

Much like the discussion about Isiah Thomas and whether or not he should be allowed to serve as a consultant to the Knicks while coaching at Florida International, the rules are a bit hazy here. The NCAA is definitely strict about these sort of things and likely won't appreciate three college athletes racking up $50,000-plus in Vegas during a weekend trip, but at the same time, why can't Jordan give money to his kids and friends?

But the good news is, everyone is back and ready for school. Jeff Jordan and Rompza tweeted that they are back in Orlando and ready for classes that begin at UCF today.

"Starting the semester off good tomorrow," Rompza tweeted Sunday night. "Workouts early cant wait. Its time to put UCF on the map for basketball! I want it." Starting the semester off good indeed, A.J.
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