DavidStern

Personal liberty and David Stern’s push to change the NBA draft age rule

2 Comments

As Kentucky waits on the decisions of star underclassmen Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Terrence Jones, and Doron Lamb (though one could probably guess the end result) chatter is picking up about NBA commissioner David Stern and his comments about the NBA draft age limit.

Currently, American-born players must be 19 years of age and one year out of high school.

“We would love to add a year, but that’s not something that the players’ association has been willing to agree to,” Stern told the Associated Press on Tuesday.

With increased pressure on the NCAA’s business model and the age limit that is already in place, some are calling a push for a two-year rule “self-serving” and only in the interest of the owners. Stern could not work something into the NBA’s latest collective bargaining agreement and expects that the change would not be made without concessions from the owners.

The argument against the rule goes as follows:

By forcing players to stay in school for two years, it serves the interest of both the NCAA and the NBA. The NCAA makes more money, by way of more star power in the regular season and post-season tournaments, and the NBA is not forced to make risky drafting decisions, after being able to see players for two years.

It works counter to the interests of the players because they must now risk injury or a declining draft stock by playing two years in college.

Were the rule to be instituted, would I like to see Anthony Davis back at Kentucky for another season? As a greedy spectator and writer who would enjoy covering such a dominant player, yes.

But in the spirit of liberty and the free market, Davis should have the right to take his talents, for better or worse, to the professional level, to profit off of them and shed the cloak of amateurism. If he were to have an underwhelming career at the NBA level and would have been helped by another year, that would be his choice. If he prospers and has a profitable, successful career at the professional level, that would also be a by-product of his choice.

It becomes increasingly difficult to defend systematic alterations that protect the business interests of owners, at the expense of the personal liberty of players. We’ll see what happens in the coming months.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

USC athletic director Pat Haden to step down in June

Getty Images
Victor Decolongon/Getty Images
Leave a comment

LOS ANGELES (AP) University of Southern California athletic director Pat Haden says he will retire on June 30.

USC President Max Nikias made the announcement Friday.

Haden has run the athletic department for 5 1/2 years, leading the Trojans through a multiyear stretch of NCAA sanctions against its vaunted football program. He created a large NCAA compliance program and improved graduation rates and grade point averages across the athletic department.

The former USC quarterback also received criticism for the football program’s relative underachievement and for his handling of coach Steve Sarkisian, who has sued the school over his termination last year.

Nikias says Haden’s department also raised over $400 million during his tenure.

Nikias says Haden will start a one-year job guiding the renovation of the Coliseum after he retires.

PREGAME SHOOTAROUND: Ivy League’s best meet in New Haven

Columbia guard Maodo Lo, right, steals the ball from Northwestern forward Aaron Falzon, left, during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game on Friday, Nov. 20, 2015, in Evanston, Ill.  (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh
Leave a comment

GAME OF THE NIGHT: Columbia at Yale, 5:00 p.m.

The two best teams in the Ivy League, with matching 4-0 league records, meet for the first time this season. The Lions were close to suffering their first loss last weekend, but an Alex Rosenberg jumper as time expired gave the Lions the win at reigning champion Harvard. Rosenberg’s one of four players averaging at least 12.2 points per game for Kyle Smith’s team, with senior guard Maodo Lo leading the way at 15.8 per contest.

They’ll face a Yale rotation led offensively by point guard Makai Mason (15.7 ppg, 4.1 apg), and the front court tandem of Justin Sears and Brandon Sherrod has been outstanding. The winner get a leg up in the Ivy race, with the rematch scheduled for March 5 in New York City (regular season finale).

THIS ONE’S GOOD TOO: Central Michigan at Akron, 8:00 p.m.

Two of the top teams in the Mid-American Conference meet at the JAR, as Akron looks to extend its win streak to six straight. The Zips’ balanced offensive attack has been led by forward Isaiah Johnson (12.5 ppg, 7.6 rpg), who currently leads the team in both scoring and rebounding. As for the visiting Chippewas, guards Braylon Rayson and Chris Fowler combine to average 32.7 points per game, with Fowler also responsible for a MAC-best 6.3 assists per contest. CMU’s had some struggles on the defensive glass in league play, ranking 11th in that category, but they’ve done a better job defensively than they did in non-conference play.

OTHER NOTABLE GAMES

  • MAAC leader Monmouth is back in action, as they host a Fairfield team led by one of the conference’s best players in senior forward Marcus Gilbert. The Hawks have a deep lineup led by junior guard Justin Robinson, who at this point in time is the likely frontrunner for MAAC Player of the Year honors.
  • Looking to catch Monmouth is Iona, which is a game behind the Hawks at 9-3. A.J. English and the Gaels visit Canisius in a matchup that should not lack for offense. Iona’s more inclined to run, but Canisius doesn’t lack scorers either with guard Malcolm McMillan leading four players averaging double figures.
  • Given the fact that they’re 1-3 in Ivy League play, Harvard’s essentially in the spoiler role unless some chaos breaks out at the top end of the standings. The Crimson can help in that regard with a win at Princeton, with the Tigers (2-1) a game behind Columbia and Yale in the loss column. Princeton’s been the better offensive team this season, thanks in large part to junior forward Henry Caruso who leads the team in both scoring and rebounding.