Wednesday, March 24, 2004

The Great Debate

Being home in the Chicago suburbs for once means I get to check out the Tribune in actual hard-copy form. Today's sports section has several articles talking about the differences between the NBA and NCAA. You probably need a subscription to view some of these (especially after today), but its free...give them your damn e-mail address and feel the spam fury for a while. It's worth it.

Point-Counterpoint: Dan McGrath - "College Basketball is Just More Fun"

                               My Man Sam(TM) - "The College Game is Awful"

I swear, those titles remind me of The Onion's editorials. But that's not all the Trib had to offer today, since the debate isn't simply what game is better. What nearly everyone aggress on is that the mass exodus of young talent to the league too early hurts both the college and NBA games. Now I, as you may know, don't care if the college game crashes and burns, but do realize that the league needs SOME sort of minor league system to help protect itself from drafting these kids who aren't ready to play yet.

                Rick Morrissey - "Undercooked Talent Poisons Basketball"

                My Man Sam(TM) - "Prep Stars Lack True NBA Skills"

The Sam Smith article details the kids who will be in Chicago tonight for the EA sports roundball classic. A lot of prep stars will be there, including projected top 10 picks Dwight Howard and Shaun Livingston. But Sam gives the predicable warning for NBA GMs:

You can't run an NBA team with these young players. Ask the Bulls. Tyson Chandler and Eddy Curry ruined the franchise. Well, actually, Jerry Krause did that by drafting them. It's not their fault, and there is hope for Curry. But no one ever will put two high school kids together again like the Bulls did. They're finishing their third seasons and the Bulls are no better than in their first. If a general manager is going to invest in one of this year's crop, he better have patience and a long contract.

Now, I will not say that Curry/Chandler RUINED the franchise. But I do think he has a point to be made that what Jerry Krause did in the 2001 draft was unprecedented, and a daring experiment. And It's probably safe to say that no other team will try it again for a while.