I Can Fix Anything, And So Can The NCAA

Mrs. ALLBLUCAT is already convinced that I watched too much TV when I was a kid. This because, I have already told her on several occasions that there is not much you cannot fix with Duct Tape, WD-40, and a hammer. If I could only get through to the NCAA that they also can fix their problems, I would have it made........Let me elaborate.

UKlvrJM brought out an interesting point about the "Kentucky Rule", and the discussion of it, and it has brought to the table some interesting points both ways on the "one and done" player. Most everyone has figured out by now that these rules made up by the NCAA have more to do with their checking account balance than balance in amateur athletics, but there is a happy medium which can be reached and would also bring benefit to all concerned.

To understand all of this, you must first understand the way the NCAA thinks. You also have to remember that though they have many similarities, Football and Basketball are seen very differently in the eyes of the NCAA because Football is considered to be a "contact" sport. There has always been this myth that because football players have more physical risk than basketball players, they need more protecting in the eyes of the NCAA, and is actually one of the founding reasons for the institution being started. That is what helped to shape the three year rule that football has. Combine that with the fact that the NBA, their lawyers, the NBAPA, and their lawyers and their CBA, have put a major kink in the system, the NCAA is between the proverbial "rock and a hard case" (bonus points for the movie). The NCAA wants, craves, and needs these kids in school for as long as they can get them, because they wont make the revenue if they don't. The problem with that logic is that they would make revenue no matter who they have, but they like the big names. John Wall may have very well instigated the discussions that brought the NCAA to expanding the tournament. Hogwash you say? Think about this. John Wall got more airtime, magazine face time, and media attention that any other player in NCAA basketball this year. Don't think that the NCAA will not use that when it comes time to renegotiate this multi-billion dollar tournament contract. The NCAA doesn't want those kids to go straight to the pros, because they wont get their shot at them. The NBA loves getting another year's look at them, and how much they progress, because it makes their draft that much more predictable and solid. They are getting a proven commodity.

So, the one and done player is really helping the NCAA, why would they change it? Well, the purists believe it is corrupting the idea of collegiate athletics, and I tend to agree, but I will leave my personal feelings out of this for now. The coaches want more than one year of service from these kids because they don't want to have to deal with the turmoil that we have at the present. The only people making this system work successfully are guys like Calipari who have learned how to get these kids producing quick and producing big. so the system is broken (in the eyes of some) and it is making a joke out of college athletics, their graduation rates, the idea of getting an education etc,etc,etc. there are also folks out there who see this as much ado about nothing, and believe that graduation rates and such should not have any standing on a program or its people, because kids leave college all the time for one reason or another, why shouldn't millions of dollars be enough of a good reason? Then you also get the folks in the D-league and Europe camp who think that any kid who doesn't want to go to college, or cannot qualify, should just sign with a d-league or European team for a year, then make the transition to the NBA. There are multitudes of questions, multitudes of opinions, and all sorts of problems to go along with them.

And since we are solving problems, why not throw football in there too? Some folks believe that the idea of buying bowl games should be put out to pasture, and again I tend to agree with that thinking, but I have heard and can understand the arguments both ways. So I am going to propose a simple solution to both problems in one all encompassing thought.

To steal a line from an HBO series here are the NEW RULES:

1) All collegiate athletes in any sport, are required to either complete 2 years of collegiate coursework  or 24 months of enrollment with the institution of their choice, provided they are qualified under all other rules of eligibility. Any athlete who completes these 2 years or 24 months in good academic standing shall be considered to have fulfilled the guidelines of collegiate athletics, and early exit from that institution will have no bearing on that school's graduation rates, and if the athlete completes the equivalency of an Associates Degree, they will be considered to have graduated from their institution.

2) All Div I schools will be required to compete only in direct competition with other Div I schools for the purpose of eligibility in post-season play. Schools may play as many exhibition games as they choose with other institutions, and their wins and losses will count towards a schools' totals, but only Div I competition will count towards bowl game qualifications, tourney play, etc. Football programs will be required to complete 10 Div I games a year, while basketball will be required to complete 25 games a year.

Any athlete leaving a program earlier than 2 years will be considered to have forfeited their eligibility, and will result in a loss of 1 yr scholarship to the institution which they attended. This can be for academic reasons, behavioral reasons, monetary reasons, etc. That athlete will also be required to repay all costs associated with their participation with that institution including but not limited to travel, meals, lodging, books, class hours etc.

These simple changes will not only help towards the credibility of the schools, collegiate athletics as a whole, and their  image, they will simplify the situations surrounding recruiting and participation in professional athletics as well.


These rules will make coaches think first, and athletes as well, before they start down the path of college athletics should they only be interested in obtaining a pro contract. the NBA , the NBAPA, and their CBA can do as they wish, and they will have no effect on college in any fashion.

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