Monday, 15 April 2013

NCAA: Choosing the Interests of Coaches (Revenue) Over Students Yet Again

For years you have heard my ranting about the preposterous NCAA rules related to the ability of college athletes in men's basketball to properly evaluate their prospects in deciding to enter the NBA draft and forgo college eligibility.  Two years ago I wrote this piece in Huffington Post entitled "Transitioning From the NCAA to the NBA: Time for a Change in the Rules" that turned into this law review article in the Harvard Law School's Journal on Sports & Entertainment Law.

Today once again reminds us of how the NCAA chooses, yet again, to favor the interests of the high paid coaches over the students that they so publicly claim to protect and value.  While the NBA and NBPA have created the current "one and done" environment in men's basketball, the NCAA does an absolutely miserable job in allowing students to properly assess their prospects in making a wise decision as to whether or not to leave early.  How?  Well look at the dates for this process:

April 15th: Last day the NBA will provide an assessment, allowed under NCAA rules, of an underclassmen's prospects.

April 16th: Last day a student-athlete can withdraw from the NBA draft and retain their eligibility.

This provides a full day to make an assessment and, under NCAA rules, to do so without an agent.  OK, you'd then assume that the NBA's deadline to declare for, or withdraw from, this year's draft is imminent......right?  Nope.  Their deadlines are as follows:

April 28th: The last day a prospect can submit their name for this year's draft.  More importantly, is the following date...

June 17th: The last day a prospect can remove their name from the NBA draft.

What?  Yup, the NBA doesn't require someone decide until June 17th, a full TWO MONTHS, after the NCAA requires a college athlete make their intentions known.  You then, rightfully, ask why this gap?  Well, because college coaches wanted an early deadline to help them recruit should someone leave early.

I stand by my earlier statement, this is another example of the NCAA making decisions and rules for high profile, well paid, coaches, rather than the college athlete.  Or, as those of us on the basketball court may yell when blocking a shot...."CERT DENIED!"

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