College Basketball Is Back, And So Is Rent-A-Star For A Year

Sports News With College Basketball Part of the fun of college basketball – a part that left long ago – was watching players develop. Raw freshman. Sophomore flash. Solid-to-spectacular...

Sports News With College Basketball

Part of the fun of college basketball – a part that left long ago – was watching players develop.

Raw freshman. Sophomore flash. Solid-to-spectacular junior. Senior with leadership skills. There was a process and there was progress.

Well, seniors fell out of this equation long ago. The college players who stay for four years are the ones who aren’t good enough to make it to the NBA sooner (yes, there are exceptions).

Ok, so we saw juniors become the ranking upperclassmen. We got to know the players over a shorter period of time.

Now? The kids are on and off campus faster that the pizza delivery guy. Here today, gone tomorrow.

So while many marveled at No. 2 Duke’s 118-84 beating of No. 4 Kentucky on Tuesday night to open the 2018-19 season, others simply paid it no mind. We will not get to know Duke freshman Zion Williamson very well before the NBA’s draft in June. Same for RJ Barrett. Both majoring in basketball, the one-year degree program in Durham, N.C.

Kentucky, of course, has already faced criticism for its recruiting … for 2019. Why? Its entire front-court will likely turn pro in the spring. Remember when cars had four on the floor? The Wildcats may have four leave the floor. And Kentucky is accustomed to players being there for so short a period of time that they never actually unpack.

It’s not the fault of the kids. The NBA won’t let them be professionals unless they are 19 years old, and there is no real basketball minor league. So the players coming out of high school – or those training academies that masquerade as such – do a year of college, creating the one-and-done scenario, and they flock to the places that can teach them fastest and put them in the biggest spotlight. Duke, Kentucky, blah, blah, blah.

Will these young men pass freshman English? Can they balance a chemical equation?

Doesn’t matter. If they can score, pass, rebound, they need only one other skill – hand-writing.

They need to be able to sign that NBA contract.

 
 
Post By: Larry Weisman, a longtime sportswriter for USA TODAY, blogs for Twistity.com. Follow him on Twitter @MrLarryWeisman

Follow @TwistityNews