Beginning with last week's Block-Charge column, ESPN has begun a weekly column under the general heading, "Change the Game." Today, Myron Medcalf makes his case for the bad influences of the NBA game on college bball.
Among his examples:
- "Organized offenses have been replaced by an influx of isolation plays, a direct influence from the next level."
- "Isolation reigns. And that’s a problem.... It’s an issue because it strips Division I offenses of their fluidity."
- "There is also the issue with versatility.... More versatility increases NBA potential. But again, most players won’t get to that level and they’re wasting their time trying to play four positions when they can barely manage one."
- "NBA officiating has affected the quick whistles against helpless NCAA defenders trying to stop them [O-players]."
- "The NBA... [is] a very soft game now. And the college game has followed its lead with rulings that favor offensive players."
Allow me to add that the above are not my own views. I don't follow the NBA enough to comment right away, though I've no doubt that I'll add a half-baked comment down the line, agreeing or disagreeing with one of you. We'll see.
Don't know whether this column will generate much discussion, but the Block-Charge thread got some response. We'll see.
Also, ESPN attempts something of a "balanced" approach, as they sort of pair Medcalf's anti-NBA column with a column by Fran Fraschilla on "How Colllege Coaches Can Learn from NBA." Here's link, but you must have access to ESPN Insider. I don't.
Last edited by gumbomoop; 05-25-2012 at 01:01 PM.
I have not read the articles but do plan to keep up with them this summer. Thanks for pointing them out.
The comments in the post did lead me to think that the NCAA is actually being squeezed in 2 directions. The points about isolation plays in the NBA is the one squeeze against NCAA basketball. The other is that some players in high school and on AAU teams are so much better than their teammates that HS and AAU coaches also teach the most talented kids to take total control of the game (isolation plays, play more than one position). The squeeze occurs at the NCAA level. All of the players were the stars of their HS teams. To win team championships on the NCAA level players need to meld together as a team. (Yes even Ky had to do that this year.) When they jump to the NBA, there is a lot of talk about wanting to win championships, but if the goal is to make money the players revert back to wanting to be the do-everything star.
Inspired by the documentary about the 92 Duke team, I went back recently and looked at the 1992 final between Duke and Michigan. A lot of things struck me, such as how amazing Bobby Hurley was at finding his teammates, especially on the fast break. One thing that struck me is how different Duke's half-court offense looked in 1992. Much more motion and much more sharing of the ball. I realize that it may have been largely a function of the personnel, given how amazingly talented that 1992 team was, but it really was fun to watch. But maybe I can blame this on the NBA.
I guess I miss the 1992 team. :-)