Monday, May 16, 2011

How the NBA Lockout Affects UGA

While most of the ESPN segments now consist of Adam Schefter and/or Rachel Nichols reporting on the status of the NFL lockout, the NBA is also most likely headed for a work stoppage (for most of the same reasons as the NFL). And as we've seen, some potential NBA prospects have taken notice and decided to return to school next season (e.g. Jared Sullinger/Terrence Jones/Harrison Barnes/Perry Jones). Others have decided that the opportunity is too much to pass up (Trey Thompkins/Travis Leslie).

When the new collective bargaining agreement is formulated after this NBA season, one of the matters in question is whether or not to amend the "one and done" rule that forces high school players to attend college for a year. Question you might be asking: "Why does this concern UGA, we don't recruit one-and-done caliber players"? Well...we DO have a McDonald's All-American coming in this fall (Kentavious Caldwell-Pope) and hopefully we will parlay some of Mark Fox's successes into some big-time recruits (especially in 2012). Also, this could greatly impact some of our rival schools (Tech, UK, Tenn, etc.).

The way I see it, there are really only three likely options that will be considered:
  1. Eliminate the 'one and done' rule completely -- I don't see this happening. When players started going into the draft straight from high school, too many teams took chances on these guys and the league struggled a bit. Obviously there are exceptions (KG, Kobe, Lebron) but there are a lot of guys who could have used some college experience to help them mature (Josh Smith, Lou Williams, Dwight Howard, Amare Stoudemire, and several others who are already out of the league).
  2. Keep the 'one and done' format -- I'm sure the college coaches hate this rule, but do the NBA guys care? I don't know but if I were running the NBA, I would want these draftees to be as polished as possible when they enter the draft.
  3. "Two and through". Basically, players are forced to play two years before they are eligible for the draft. This would be ideal in my opinion but it makes you wonder if the high school guys would be tempted to play overseas (an option football players don't really have).
As we have mentioned multiple times, the 2012 recruiting class is going to be huge for Mark Fox (good or bad). If it goes like we hope it does, there could be a couple of players that make the above issue VERY important for UGA basketball.

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