College Basketball is a "Bus Stop" For Players

By Anthony Lenahan
Melina Vastola-USA Today Sports

A game played with passion, love and intensity is now losing a little bit of it’s pride now.  College basketball is now becoming a “bus stop” for players.

A week ago, North Carolina coach Roy Williams, said in a press conference that college basketball “is a bus stop” and “not very important to guys anymore”.

These are very strong words coming from one of the most iconic coaches currently coaching today.

Taking a deeper look into what Coach Williams said, his statement is extremely accurate.  Since the one and done rule was instituted in 2006, there have been an extraordinary amount of underclassmen who entered the NBA draft.

These players are ruining the game of college basketball.  The one and done rule was enforced by the NCAA after a spurt of players declared for the NBA draft right out of high school and decided not to even go to college.

The one and done rule has caused college basketball to become a “bus stop” for players who don’t care about school at all and just want to go to the league.  You have players like Kevin Durant and Derrick Rose who were amazing talents, who could have gone from the high school to the NBA, but were forced to go to college.  In college, they dominated and were exciting to watch, but then left after one year.

What is the point of that?  It is taking away from the great sport of college basketball.  A place where you actually get to watch kids go all out and play like it means something with their students cheering them on.  It has to be the greatest feeling in the world to be out on the court in front of students going crazy and these one and done athletes are ruining it.

Kentucky has a great team every single year, but every year they have a different starting five.  Coach Calipari gets players to come to Kentucky because he is known to be the best coach to develop NBA products.  He gets almost all the top recruits, coaches them for a year and then they move on.

College basketball just isn’t as important to the talented players anymore.  There is a reason why the mid-majors like Butler and VCU can make a run in the NCAA tournament every year.  There is a reason why a Norfolk State beats a Missouri or a Lehigh upsets a Duke.

Players on mid-majors care that much more about the game.  There is not one player leaving early from a mid-major. Look at C.J. McCollum, for example. He could have left early and been a first round draft pick, but decided to come back for his senior year looking to upset another team in the NCAA tournament.  These players care and they stay for all four years and truly develop and grow as individuals and as a team.

You can not teach experience and no major program in the country has enough experience because they always have players leaving early.  College basketball is great and will always be, but if players didn’t leave early and played with the pride and passion they should, there is no better sport out there to watch then college basketball.

Roy Williams made these comments educationally.  As a coach he has gone through this, in fact, he lost three first round draft picks who could still be on the team this year if they didn’t leave after last season.  He knows that when he got his players to stay together like Tyler Hansbrough, Ty Lawson, Wayne Ellington, and Danny Green in 2009, they won the national championship.

Every single one of those players now is in the NBA and are doing well because they stayed in college and developed.  It is a prime example, players should not be allowed to leave early, it would only benefit themselves and college basketball.

If you don’t want to force kids to go to school, then allow them to go from high school straight to the NBA, don’t force them to go to a year of school that they don’t want to go to because it ruins the game of college basketball.

College basketball should not be treated as a “bus stop” and the top players need to start respecting the game a little more.

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