Posts for Tag: ncaa

A double standard for young basketball players

I'm reading this Yahoo article about a kid named Jeremy Tyler who is going to forgo his senior year of high school to play overseas in Europe. His goal is to get 2 years of experience and then return to the US for the 2011 NBA Draft. He'll be home-schooled and earn his GED (overseas, I assume).
My reaction, good for him. I think there's a terrible double standard for young highly talented basketball players. On one hand, they've been poked and prodded and coddled since they were in junior high school (some earlier) and then asked to follow the same path as every other 17-18 year old kid. Go to college, earn a degree, etc. Why should they? Their vocation is not going to be in the fields of engineering or sociology or biology, etc. They have chosen a profession for themselves - PROFESSIONAL ATHLETE. Why shouldn't they do whatever they can to enhance their skill sets in that area? Jeremy Tyler was basically a man playing against children. Do you think another year of crushing high school kids was going to improve his draft stock? Regarding college, do you think playing against college level kids is better for honing your basketball skills than playing against professional men in Europe? The only noise I hear are from pro-NCAA folks who somehow feel like the value of education can't be compromised. My argument would be, if they didn't play basketball for your school, would you let them in? If they care about education so much, what would it matter if Jeremy Tyler played professional basketball for 15 years and then enrolled in college at the age of 33 (which he stated he plans to do). That's the difference between a professional athlete and a person with a normal career. Athletes don't need a college education to do their jobs, but normal people need a college education before anyone will hire them.
And don't get me started about how much the NCAA makes off essentially free labor...