Out-Sourcing and In-Sourcing American College Basketball: Good, Bad or Neutral?

  • Foreign players like Svi and Prezemek Karnowski are in-sourced to get degrees and training for a shot at the NBA.

    Domestic players, like Mudiay, are outsourced to play for pay.

    For several decades the insourcing has been going on, and foreign players have been taking up a small but significant percentage of roster spots that could have been going to domestic players. Generally the insourcing has improved, if only slightly, the quality of American college basketball.

    But now outsourcing enters into the picture. Outsourcing skims off some of our best players, thus actually reducing the quality of American college basketball, and sends them over seas for a year before going to the NBA. This seems to be a very good thing for players, because they get to play for substantial money, rather than for scholarship benefits most apparently do not appear intent on following through on so as to capitalize on (get degrees that might help them after their playing days).

    Since most of the players involved are legally adults, and USA remains a culture and economy where people are free to choose their line of work, subject to demand and supply constraints and personal preferences, it hardly seems appropriate for us to debate whether players should, or should not be allowed to go overseas, or not. That’s there damned business and we ought to stay out of it.

    On the other hand, this does impact our game of college basketball and in a small, but possibly expanding way, its contribution to our economy.

    We don’t want to see American college basketball get outsourced the way the American industrial employment was outsourced. We don’t want American college basketball “hollowed out.” At least we don’t want it hollowed out, if we are paying for part of it with our state taxes, and we are paying for a HUGE portion of it with Federal tax deductions occurring from donations private not for profit 501.c3 athletic departments, and from non taxable revenues streams cycling through those tax exempt athletic departments.

    Which is better for college basketball and for America? Players spending a year abroad, before going pro, or just letting them go straight to the NBA?

  • @jaybate-1.0 It isn’t mutually exclusive. Even if the NBA changes the rules to allow declaring straight from high school, we’ll still see kids going overseas. In fact, I wonder if the NBA will see attrition of talent because kids will stay overseas, and if that will force their hand to revoke the 1-and-done rule.

  • @approxinfinity

    Are you saying foreign teams will out bid NBA franchises for these freshmen?

  • @jaybate-1.0 I’m saying match or outbid for some of the kids who they already have had playing for them for a year, yes.

  • I can see some players benefiting by playing one year in Europe with its emphasis in fundamentals. However, I just don’t see a player getting any better by playing in China where the levels of play is low and by some accounts the playing conditions not good.

    The NBA has now over 100 European/foreign players which is close to 25% of all players and current Champion San Antonio has 9 foreign players and the previous year it had 10.

    At the Nike Hoops Summit, the international Team beat the USA team and it also won last year.

    The rest of the world is catching up. How is that for the State of Basketball in America?

  • @jaybate-1.0 And I’d guess Silver sees this as a possibility. If he wants to expand the NBA internationally doesn’t it seem a little odd to still have 1 and done rules when other international leagues would not? Should it be assumed that the NBA could forever use those other leagues as their farm systems?

  • @JayHawkFanToo I agree that the highlight clip I saw for Mudiay in China makes the Chinese league look pretty weak. I don’t understand how his stock is so high. He seems less of a known commodity having played there than a player coming from a year of D-I. But I think the Euro leagues have a stronger talent pool And who knows, if someone with more money than God wants to field a legit NBA roster in China, I’d guess enough money could change things pretty quickly.

  • Market Forces At Play. This exists on a different plane and in different contexts from the college game, as it only applies to the elite few potential college players that can get big money overseas, or conversely, are able to play in the American NCAA Div.1

  • @approxinfinity

    I feel exactly the same way. We will soon find out how that year in China affected Mudiay and maybe it will change the minds of recruits that want the quick buck.

  • @JayHawkFanToo ‘State of basketball in the US’ is very analogous to the state of American business compared to foreign counterparts. Just like a royalty/blueblood school is always a benchmark and wears a target, so it goes for American sports vs world.

    The unfortunate fact is that in many sports, business, and other areas…the USA has already been surpassed. What will that mean for posterity?

  • For the life of me I can’t figure out why the NBA would want kids right out of high school. They have a free, to them, minor league system called the NCAA. Why they’d even want OAD’s is beyond me. I’m not even sure why the NCAA wouldn’t want a system that keeps kids in school til they’ve used their eligibility. The tournament got it lucky this year with a very buzzworthy final four, and the ratings to boot, but a FF like this year is a rarity. But if all of these talents who used to stay for 3 0r 4 years did stay, then we’d be having some real talent playing in the final weekend. But I’m afraid we’re just heading for more Butler-UConn type of finals and mid majors making it, which is kind of exciting, but hasn’t created appointment viewing for me. When George Mason made it, I didn’t spend all week salivating over the prospect of watching George Mason play in the FF.

    As for the in-sourcing, I don’t care one way or the other. As for what Mudiay did, I say more power to him. He recognized the sham that is college basketball and did what his conscience told him was best.

  • @wissoxfan83 “…but a FF like this year is a rarity.” Historically, yes; but going forward, I can envision it as the standard…unless the NBA and NCAA can agree to make adjustments to the current OAD rule. And Mudjay, well he was something of an exception, although apparently he never did pay homage to the power and rules of formal education. It looks as though he would not have been eligible for Division 1 play, right from the getgo. So he squeezed himself into a box, then pretty much had to go overseas or to jr. cllg. or Div. 3. He opted for the quick dollar.

  • @REHawk thank you for pointing out that EM had no chance of playing D1 ball this year because of his grades. Most people forget he wasn’t eligble.

    Same rumors are swirling about Thon which makes me nervous about our recruitment of him.

  • @jaybate-1.0

    “Which is better for college basketball and for America? Players spending a year abroad, before going pro, or just letting them go straight to the NBA?”

    This is a monster can of worms. Many things need to be addressed. @ralster veered off into “market forces”… and when going this way in the International world you have to address politics and subsidized competition. Competing with Chinese teams isn’t apples-to-apples with American teams because they are largely or wholly subsidized by their government, the same as their manufacturing competing against American manufacturing.

    You left out another option in your statement above… how about D1 paying players with more than an education? The financial gap could be reduced and I’m pretty sure the enticement to go abroad for most of these kids would stop if they received enough money to buy a flash car or help their family buy food.


    Are we still actively recruiting Thon? Sure haven’t heard much about our activity there.

  • @jaybate-1.0 So you threw the question out there… Interested to hear what your opinion is. must… stop… watching… jaybate’s flashing keyboard…

  • @drgnslayr

    I believe that the Thon Maker “legend” suffered a serious blow at the Nike Hoops Summit last weekend as I mentioned a t the time. He showed he is really not ready for prime time and at this time, he is more of a project than an immediate impact player.

    First, if you are that good and want to compete against the best, why in the world do you attend school in Canada? I don’t have anything against Canada but let’s face it, other than a few…make that several, good players that have come south lately, it is really not a basketball hotbed. Second, is there a chance that there are issues with his grades? It is not uncommon for these private schools that cater to “athletes” to have academic issues.

    Like you said, the world has suddenly gone silent on Thon Maker.

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