Can Austin be as good as Lebron? That's quite an interesting question considering the different things they both bring. One thing is for sure - I know that Austin wont be afraid to take that last second shot - EVER.
I expect Austin to make a splash more in the vein of Penny Hardaway. He's gonna get schooled - but all rookies do.
I should qualify that - guys who are hard workers get better. JJ Redick is a FAR better player now than he was when he entered the NBA, for example, because he has worked his tail off. The idea that a guy can't develop while on an NBA bench is flatly disproven by the hundreds and hundreds of players who have done exactly that.
AR by all accounts has a phenomenal work ethic - he will be just fine in the NBA.
K ignoring any prospects who might leave after a year = K doesn't recruit top talent. I don't like the "one-and-done" thing for a variety of reasons - I don't like the notion that the NBA "forces" kids to go to college, and as an alum I'd really rather use scholarships on kids who are serious about eventually getting a degree - but this is a fact of life in college basketball. You either recruit top talent and deal with early entry, or you recruit less-heralded players and hope to make a run once every 3-4 years.
Mason should sit Coach K down and tell him he'll come back to school if K promises that he'll start Quinn Cook at the point next year.
That's 4 of 20 that are freshmen.
That's 7 of the remaining 16 that are sophomores.
So, over half of the starters in this year's final four will be freshmen and sophomores. I think this year's final four does a pretty darn poor job of presenting your case - one team starts all freshmen and sophomores, and another starts four sophomores with one senior.
Just be you. You is enough. - K, 4/5/10, 0:13.8 to play, 60-59 Duke.
You're all jealous hypocrites. - Titus on Laettner
You see those guys? Animals. They're animals. - SIU Coach Chris Lowery, on Duke
OSU starts 4 sophomores and a senior with a junior and two freshmen as the key reserves. That's 6 underclassmen in their 8-man rotation.
Louisville and Kansas fit your argument more closely, but they're the two teams least likely to make the championship game.
By all accounts, JJ did most of his improvements in the off-season. We saw similar improvements while at Duke with JJ as well. Players that will succeed will succeed either way it just comes down to would you like to develop while actually playing meaningful games and trying to win a title while making no money or would you like to more than likely ride the pine and make some money. Mocks have Rivers going anywhere from Portland to Denver or Dallas and I don't see much PT anywhere for him there. Nolan Smith can't get off the bench in Portland and I'd think Rivers would be behind Ewill and Nolan at this point and they don't even play.
Guys leaving early is just part of the game now. You need to have these guys, not just because you need their talent but because you need other, just-below-that-level-of-talent guys to also want to come to your school, and they're going to choose schools that they see putting guys in the NBA. Without the elite level talent you'd have to run a system like a mid-major team, relying on veterans who play together for four years and develop good chemistry, but as Matches said this only allows you to really make a run once every few years.
Also, at the point that schools have to start recruiting these kids - their sophomore and junior years of high school - it's not 100% clear who is going to be a one year guy and who isn't. So you have to take some risks, make an assessment of how committed the players will be to their classwork during the time they are in school, and go from there. Mason could have been viewed as a potential one-and-doner; so could Kyle. Imagine if we had stopped recruiting them because of this.