Kentucky’s GPA is…lacking

The Last Angry Fan dug up a little dirt on John Calipari’s first season at Kentucky. It turned out that a bunch of one-and-dones didn’t care all that much about academics. Shocker!

Of all the athletic teams at the University of Kentucky, no team had a lower cumulative GPA than Calipari’s squad. In fact, Kentucky’s basketball team scored their lowest GPA since the 2002 season.

High-fives all around!

How bad was UK’s GPA? Think low, then take off a point or two and you’re almost there. For the fall semester, their cumulative GPA was a meager 2.025, easily the worst amongst the nine SEC teams that released their GPA’s to the public.

This is a side effect of the NBA’s age-limit rule. When you force kids to go to college that wouldn’t otherwise go to college, and only for a year, they’re not going to work all that hard in the classroom. They know they only have to pass a few credits in the fall semester to be eligible to play in March Madness, and after that they’re off to the NBA.

What a joke.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom.

An argument for the NBA’s one-and-done rule

You don’t hear this often from anyone not named David Stern, but Brandon LaChance of says that the NBA should keep its age-limit rule because it allows the NBA to get a better look at prospects. Let’s go point-by-point:

The draft entrance law does hurt the college game. There is no doubt about it. Players leaving after one year hurts a team’s roster and team chemistry. The star player gets all the shine while the rest of the players and the school itself are forgotten. I know who John Wall is but couldn’t list one of his Kentucky teammates.

No offense, but if LaChance can’t name DeMarcus Cousins, Patrick Patterson or Eric Bledsoe, maybe he shouldn’t be commenting about how a rule affects the college game.

If a school has a problem with a player leaving after one year, then don’t recruit the athlete. Instead of Derrick Rose, OJ Mayo or Kevin Durant, go after Tyler Hansbrough.

That’s fine, but there are only so many Tyler Hansbroughs in the world. When you force a kid to go to college for a year, he doesn’t want to be there and he doesn’t want to go to class. It makes a mockery of the so-called “student-athlete.” Basketball programs are going to do what is in their best interests in terms of winning, and under this flawed system that means some will recruit clear one-and-done players like John Wall. You can’t force a flawed system on the NCAA and expect everyone to forgo the best available talent. One-and-done players only have to pass a few credits in their first semester to become eligible to play in the NCAA tournament. They don’t even have to go to a single class in in their second semester. This is ridculous.

One and done gives the NBA and the players a showcase, practice and a scale to place talent. There are millions of college hoops fans turning on their television sets to watch a big game or Sports Center for highlights.

The stud player is showcased to the world. The fans hearing how good he is at the college level will more than likely pay attention to him at the next level. Carmelo Anthony helped Syracuse win a championship in his one year. Anthony did his one year before the rule was a rule. Denver drafted him and their ticket sales went up along with media coverage of the Nuggets. The NCAA showcased his talent for the world to see and the NBA cashed in on it.

Yes, the one-and-done rule gives NBA teams a better look at a prospect, but that’s not the point. It’s wreaking havoc on the college game. High schooler LeBron James went ahead of Anthony in that draft and he’s doing just fine.

Remember a guy named Kwame Brown. Brown was drafted straight out of high school by the Washington Wizards in 2001 with the number one overall pick. He is one of the biggest busts in NBA history. In 2003, his best statistical year, he only averaged 10 points and 8 rebounds. This may not be completely accurate, but if he would have played a year in college, the Wizards may have noticed weaknesses. Brown may have needed the year to further develop. He might have decided to stay longer to develop skills if he couldn’t be a big time performer in the college level.

Ah, yes, the Kwame Brown argument. Yet there are plenty of examples of players that were busts coming out of college. What’s the NBA’s excuse there? On the whole, players drafted straight out of high school have a much higher success rate than those that played in college. In other words, why is the NBA forcing their rule on the NCAA to fix a non-existent problem?

The one and done deal may not be the best solution ever but it is the best now. University’s get one year of excitement and the NBA gets to cash in off of the marketing the NCAA does for the players. I think it is a great system and should stay in place. If the NCAA wants students to stay longer or participate, they have to do something.

What is the NCAA supposed to do? You can’t force a kid to stay in college — the only entity that could do that is the NBA (by requiring any players not drafted straight out of high school to play two years of collegiate ball before entering the draft again). That’s the system I support. Allow players that are good enough to go to the NBA straight out of high school to do so, but if they enroll in college they have to play for two years. That way, the NBA gets a good look at the fringe NBA talent, the NCAA gets some semblance of continuity, and those same kids get an opportunity to develop for two seasons at the college level.

Everyone wins.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

Coach K thinks NCAA’s one-and-done policy is a ‘sham’

Per (via the Dan Patrick Show)…

“If [a kid is] good enough, he should be allowed to come right out of high school,” Kryzewski said.

But Coach K thinks if a player does go to college, he should take academics seriously.

“If they go to college, they should be there long enough to take core courses that could eventually lead to a degree,” Kryzewski said. “Otherwise it’s a sham.”

When the NBA age-limit rule was implemented, I conducted a study that found that players that were drafted straight out of high school had a higher success rate than players that were drafted out of college or via international ball.

I think the best system would be to allow high schoolers to be drafted, and if they go undrafted, they’re able to enter college. Once they do enter college, they’ll have to play a minimum of two years. That way, the players that are NBA-caliber at 18 can go straight to the league, while those that need seasoning will have to put in a couple of seasons on the collegiate level. The two-season minimum is to ensure that these players will put in some academic effort while in school (which will hopefully result in a degree somewhere down the line). One season isn’t enough. Right now, players have to pass just six hours in the first semester to be eligible to play for the entire year. That’s a joke.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

Bobby Knight calls out John Calipari

Speaking at a fundraiser at the Indiana Hall of Fame, Coach Knight had this to say (via ESPN)…

“We’ve gotten into this situation where integrity is really lacking and that’s why I’m glad I’m not coaching. You see we’ve got a coach at Kentucky who put two schools on probation and he’s still coaching. I really don’t understand that.”

Finally. Someone of note calls out John Calipari for his long history of shenanigans at the college level. He has had two Final Four appearances vacated by the NCAA after scandals at UMass (Marcus Camby accepted gifts from an agent — probably not Calipari’s fault) and Memphis (Derrick Rose’s SAT — partly Calipari’s fault). He hired Dajuan Wagner’s father as his Coordinator of Basketball Operations, hired Tyreke Evans’s personal strength coach as his administrative assistant, and allowed Rose’s brother to travel with the team for free (another NCAA violation that would have vacated the team’s Final Four appearance even if Rose’s SAT came back clean).

Knight wasn’t done…

“Very few people know this, but a kid can play the first semester as a freshman, pass six hours of anything and play in the NCAA tournament without ever attending a class in the second semester. I don’t think that’s right.”

This is the unseen drawback to the NBA’s one-and-done rule. Freshman that know that they’re going pro the next year have no incentive to go to class during their second semester. This is a great reason why the NBA rule should be altered so that players can come out straight from high school, but if they do enter college, they need to attend for a minimum of two years. That way, there’s at least a chance that they’ll have enough credits to eventually graduate.

Photo from fOTOGLIF

John Wall ineligible?

Maybe, according to SEC commissioner Mike Silve. Per ESPN…

A source also told that Kentucky has been investigating Wall’s eligibility for months because his former AAU coach was a certified agent.

Brian Clifton, Wall’s AAU coach, was a certified agent with FIBA, basketball’s international governing body, for nearly a year. Under NCAA rule that equates to Wall accepting illegal benefits from an agent. Consequently Wall could have to repay any and all expenses Clifton footed during that period before he can play with Kentucky.

NCAA rule also stipulates that an athlete can be withheld from at least 10 percent of a team’s games as part of the punishment.

Wall was one of the top recruits — if not the top recruit — of the ’09 class and if he’s ineligible for any part of the season it’s going to be a blow to the Wildcats. If not for the NBA’s age-limit rule, Wall probably would have headed straight for the pros, so this is another situation that could have been avoided if qualified high schoolers could bypass the collegiate ranks and play in the NBA immediately after graduating.

Related Posts