Would the NBA be a better product if young players were forced to play longer in college?

By: Mike Anthony     Date: Jan 13, 2015


In a day and age where players options have become so open it gives them all so many choices on what to do. From even going to college, to whether or not they are staying long term, or jumping straight from high school. Should players be able to make their own choices? Of course they should be able to. It doesn't make any logical sense to say they shouldn't be able to do as such. Everyone can choose their own path in life.

But, as always, it seems to always come down to making the almighty dollar. And now in a world of the one and done rule in college to turn pro earlier, it is even more ridiculously obvious. Does one seriously think that, that 1 little year in college taking the easiest course is bettering the individual, when everyone and their mother knows the kid is looking to jump ship the second he gets the chance? And the fact of the monster payrolls the players get when going pro, is obviously a very tempting offer. Reading between the lines, if you skip college and go straight to the NBA, even if you aren't a successful star, you can make enough money from NBA salary to make the decision worth it. Which is sadly becoming a choice that many people want to roll the dice on. Even though most don’t make it, and then they not only have no pro career, but nothing to fall back on either, if they get bumped from the pro level of sports. The money only lasts so long, then what?

The game itself, could be even better if more players were truly ready. And quite obviously, not all players are ready for the next level. I would think that some guys would want to work on their weaknesses in college, before taking it to the pro level. Get their game to the maximum level it can. Think about the kids who jump quick, just to sit at the end of the bench. Seriously, do you think that kids future in the league is bright? Or is he just jumping out and getting paid? Because they aren’t good enough to really be there, which bothers me terribly.

Take a look at 2013 14th pick, Shabazz Muhammad as an example. He was excellent in college. He was scoring 18 a night and grabbing 5 boards a game. Now here he is, in his rookie year in the pros, he's scoring 4 pts a night, playing 8 minutes a game. And getting paid 1.8 million a year. Does this make sense to anyone, but Shabazz Muhammad? Imagine if he played 2-3 more years in college, he in all probability could have been a 26 ppg guy, running for a title, and in the end, would have likely been a much better player, than he actually believed he was. And yes, would have gotten paid, and probably even better.

The NBA is a business, and it produces entertainment for pay, and that's fine. But, I think the NBA should be a better tuned machine that picks it's employees with the absolute best skills to get the big bucks, not a guy scoring 3 a game for millions a year. And I wish the players wanted the best product, and to be the best they can be, as much as the fans, but I don't think they really care all that much.

If you want to avoid college altogether, then they should have to tryout for the NBA D-league. It's still pro ball, and they get paid, since that what it really all boils down to. There are vast amounts of very talented players, who not only are playing pro, but are all still looking for that call to get pulled up to the NBA. If truly good enough to make it in the NBA, a D-baller will shine beyond measure. Seriously, think about some of the NBA players who made the jump and were prosperous in the NBA straight from high school. LeBron, he would have lit it up in the D-league. Same goes for Kobe and Kevin Garnett.

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Written by Mike Anthony for 10StarPicks.com


 
 
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