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Mar
04
2014

Mark Cuban cares about college kids. Yeah sure he does…

NBDLI know that Marc Cuban is a good salesman, how he sold his first company should give you a glimpse of that. And Mr. Cuban also loves the franchise he owns, and while he might not love the league he plays in, the National Basketball Association, he surely wants it to be the best it can be. So when the Mavs owner spoke about high school prospects and sending them to the NBDL would be better than college I just had to read the article on ESPN.com. And of course then blog about it.

You don’t have to pretend. We don’t have to pretend. A major college has to pretend that they’re treating them like a student-athlete, and it’s a big lie and we all know it’s a big lie. At least at most schools, not all. … But we can put more of an emphasis on their education. We can plan it out, have tutors. We can do all kinds of things that the NCAA doesn’t allow schools to do that would really put the individual first.

Mark-CubanWhile you can agree with all that Mr. Cuban said in the interview or not, the one thing that the Mavericks owner did not talk about was this … to not pretend, to use the word he emphasized in the quote above, that his interest is nothing more than about the bottom line.

First off, this is about the owners saving money cause these high school prospects would now be playing against experienced professional/traveled players, giving them more of a look if they can be “worth” taking as a top pick or not. Let’s be realistic, the “one year rule” was created by the NBA owners so that they would not waste millions on players coming out of college that did not pan out in the pro’s. Now, sending them to the development league is just one more way to battle test them before having to pay them the big bucks. It is also a way to make sure to play these young men where the front office/scouts of the NBA wants them to, cause the big boys of the NBA can boss around the NBDL, they can not do that with college.

Second, just like the world leader in sports now shows big time high school games, you do not think that the NBA would now try to push a deal for the NBDL because of these “prospects” being on the rosters. Big Monday might go from showing Kansas vs Michigan to Maine Red Claws vs Idaho Stampede. After College GameDay we might just be heading to NBDL GameTime. And of course I am sure that in all of this Mr. Cuban has not thought that having on a roster a player like Randle, or Wiggins or Parker is going to bring in more people to the gates than having no names that have been floating between NBA, Europe and the NBDL. If you do not believe this… have you ever been to a Triple A game when a Major Leaguer is playing there coming off an injury. The stadiums, which most of the time are pretty bare, will be standing room only.

And of course, because of the over twenty franchises in the “minor league” and with the possibility of every two or three getting one of these prospects Cuban thinks that they are going to bring in coaches with the same value as Coach K, Bill Self, Calipari, Roy Williams to name a few. And these coaches would now have to deal with eight-nine year pro’s having to hit the pine cause a high schooler is coming in and needs to be showcased for the big boys upstairs.

But the best part of all of this is when Mr. Cuban said that he thinks that the NBDL could be a better environment for these young men “on and off the courts”. While I am not sure about on the hardwoods, cause I do not see high caliber coaches going to the development league, but off? Being the only one in that age bracket, living in a small town/city, alone probably, away from family and friends compared to being on a campus with everyone being about their age, as well with the possibility of having your parents at a lot of games.

“We’d have to think it through,” Cuban said. “I’m not trying to jump to conclusions and say I’ve analyzed this whole thing out. I haven’t. But what I’m saying the interest is you’re to maximize your ability for your chosen profession but you’d also have to make a commitment of some sort one way or the other, either to life skills training and/or academic training.”

Let me think it through for you Mark Cuban… the college system is broken, but it does not need an avenue that involves professionals and money to players to fix it. That is the last thing it needs! The reality is that if high schoolers do not want to go to college for the one year they have other choices already. Be it in Europe or the NBDL itself. So, this is not to help the players, this is just to help the owners of the National Basketball Association to have a better chance of not making a bad choice come draft time. Nothing more or less!

Yes, just like those fine commercials that the NCAA shows us during a football or basketball games, Mr. Cuban too, is worried about the student-athlete. Or better said, how to make some money off of them!


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