NCAA didn’t ask USA Basketball if they wanted role assigned in rule changes


I rail on and on and on about the NCAA.

I’ve written a lot of wordsmaybe too many words — about how terrible the changes that were pushed through by the Commission on College Basketball are, so I understand if you’re getting anti-NCAA fatigue.

“It can’t really be that bad,” you’re thinking. “This many objectively smart people cannot possibly do things that are that dumb. They just can’t.”

Consider this the evidence that, yes, they can.

Here’s one example: One of the changes that the NCAA made was that they will allow “elite” high school players to be able to sign with an agent on July 1st of their senior year in high school “provided they have been identified as an elite senior prospect by USA Basketball.”

The problem?

Apparently no one told USA Basketball, because, according to a report from ESPN, “USA Basketball doesn’t have the infrastructure or interest in” doing that work for the NCAA. There were meetings, but neither the NBA nor USAB believed they had reached any sort of consensus.

“We could’ve done a little better job of communicating today’s news with [them],” Dan Gavitt, the NCAA’s Vice President of Men’s College Basketball, told CBS Sports. “I’ll just leave it at that.”

That should be humiliating.

But it’s not the worst of it, because one of the other changes that the NCAA implemented without talking to anyone in the know is to open up June to live recruiting weekends for scholastic teams; they got rid of two AAU live period weekends and traded them in for events that will include high school teams.

This is not something that high school coaches think will work. Forget the fact that there is literally no infrastructure currently in place for these events — because, you know, this literally has never existed before — but no one seems to quite understand exactly what these events are going to be. I’ve been asked by more college coaches about just what the hell is supposed to happen in June than anything else related to these changes.

Go read this from one of the most well-respected high school coaches in Georgia. It’s just the tip of the iceberg. He seems to share an opinion with most other high school coaches.

The truth of the matter is this: These changes were recommended by people that don’t know what they’re talking about and implemented by people that were looking to get the organization they work for some good PR after months and months of ugly headlines.

It backfired.

Good luck trying to clean up this mess.