November 3, 2011 by staff
NCAA Basketball, 2011-2012 NBA season is supposed to take on Tuesday with a list of games highlighted by the world champion Dallas Mavericks, which houses the current league MVP Derrick Rose and Chicago Bulls.
That, uh, did not happen. With college basketball season is called to tip in just five days, one of the main questions that will be asked until action resumes in the league is the effect, if any, blocking the NBA will have in the college game.
The truth is that the greatest impact has almost certainly already been made.
“One and done” is a phrase synonymous with college basketball as any since the NBA added the rule requiring players to enter the project is 19 years of age or have completed their freshman year in 2006 . During the four following seasons, college basketball has seen freshman star after the first year for four months before making the move to get paid to play the game.
This year, for the first time since the establishment of the State, a solid block of top freshmen last season are still in school. None of them mentioned by name during his speeches about love school and want to win a national title for his fans, but the lockout – that seemed imminent at the time rolled around last spring – no certainly deserves at least partial credit for decisions.
The result is the youngest in the AP preseason All-American team in history, with four sophomores and one senior. The team is led by Jared Sulling Ohio State, a postseason All-American first team a year ago would certainly have been a lottery pick he had chosen to take that step. The second vote getter, a leader in the team is North Carolina Harrison Barnes, a player who made waves 12 months ago by being the first year of the first to get the preseason All-American honors since 1986. At a time when a first year an average of 11 points has provided more than enough motivation for the teen at least “test the waters of the NBA,” Barnes continues to be a Tar Heel is as impressive as Butler and VCU crashing the Final Four last April.
Therefore star power is back in college basketball, thanks in part to a lockout is about to make the sport of roundball only show in town at least during the first half of winter. But is that enough for the purists NBA College Hoops become temporary converts?
The smart money is nowhere.
As Dana O’Neill said during the recent closing of the NBA in 1998-’99, the average attendance over 4,000 college basketball games increased by a total of six people (5193-5199). It would probably be unwise to predict a more drastic escalation this go-round.
Sports, and their respective appeal are too different to have a large population of fans to death of two. Is sections of students, full-court press and 50 three-point attempts per game compared to rap beats played in possessions, two men’s basketball and a collection of the greatest athletes and better paid in the world.
How many times have you heard an NBA fan / coach /anlyst said: “I’d rather see the two worst teams of professionals who play the two best college teams play” or a fan of College Hoops say something similar? Sure, there is probably some exaggeration there, but not as much as you’d find if the declaration is being made by a fan of another major sports.
Of course, many things have changed since 1999, and the NBA fan who reluctantly becomes a casual fan of college basketball for the next couple of months, will run into one of the most exciting preseason recently.
North Carolina will play Michigan St. in front of the Presidency on an aircraft carrier. Each team in the Maui Invitational Chaminade exterior has a legitimate chance of making the field of 68. There are realistically could be six or seven first-round draft pick on the floor when UNC faces Kentucky on December 3 in a match with the two best teams in the classification of almost everyone in the preseason. A fan of the NBA, whose attention can not be at least partially stolen during non-conference play this year is essentially a lost cause.
One thing that helps this crusade – and something many fans have been clamoring for – a series of college basketball to build an organized and meaningful event to announce the start of the season. Let last year’s Elite Eight squad, or the top ten teams in the AP preseason poll duke it out as part of a full day event on ESPN. Do something, anything, to the football world focused on college basketball is back.
As it is, the opening night comes, goes and leaves Eric Valentin size dent in the national sports landscape. A handful of elite teams have been the programming of the leading opponents of the first week of the college football season for years, and there are about 1,000 times more in the line of games that could ever be in an earlier confrontation to December hoops. Equipment “not prepared” to face elite competition as soon as an excuse that does not hold. What if basketball is relatively low? It’s bad basketball with the best teams in the country. When that is the case it is usually hard to tell anyway. Of course none of this matters unless Kevin Durant is playing football on college campuses in 12 months … I guess it’s a possibility.
Even without a marquee opening night, this is the closest thing to a perfect storm of college basketball could be expected. You have more plays before New Year this season than any other in recent history, you have established stars lottery picks that come in June playing games, and have zero professional basketball for racing.
In five days, college basketball is the central co-homeless or opening act. If you can attract someone who is not the usual suspects of this show, then it is probably something that will never happen.
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