Bilas calls for fixing amateurism in NCAAM





  • “There is nothing inherently wrong with these apparel deals between a company and a school. But given the NCAA’s amateurism rules, it sure does create a contradiction. There is no question that NCAA schools could buy the apparel they need, but instead they choose to accept the revenue and profit from the relationship while using the players to do it. There is no way that the NCAA will adopt rules limiting the commercial opportunities of its members or its partners.”

    That same message has been playing in my head long before this scandal.

    “When you use a person to make money while at the same time limiting that person from making money, you exploit. Players are certainly not mistreated, but they are exploited.”

    Bingo!

    It is so ridiculous to think you can put athletes in a world where gold and diamonds are being thrown in the air, yet these athletes that actually create all of this wealth can not benefit from it. And the better the athlete… the more revenue he makes everyone (except himself)… and the less likely he is of finishing school (the only payment received), and last… the more that athlete risks by playing sports in college, because an injury can end all of that potential.





  • Bill giving interviews like this also makes me feel better. I’d be more worried if he had a low profile.



  • Jay Bilas truly hates CBB. He loves the NBA and wants another version of the NBA. He’s the classic hypocrite.

    Every time there is a rule or law, it can create a black market, and some people will always try to skirt the rule/law. That doesn’t mean you change the rules/law.

    Bilas’ path is one that will destroy CBB. If you love CBB, you will strongly oppose Bilas and his shortsightedness.

    The answer is to eliminate the one year limitation and let players turn pro whenever they want; to strengthen and enforce the NCAA rules; and for the NBA D league options to expand.

    Leave CBB alone, but let the whiners turn pro immediately.

    @drgnslayr I would strongly disagree. What wealth do the players create? The reality is that the players are interchangeable. If the top 30 players just went pro, CBB would be as strong as ever.



  • @drgnslayr the NBA created the OAD rule. If anyone is to blame it is them. just like anyone else, the NBA requires players to go through college. If players don’t like the currency they are paid in, there are other options.

    The real cause of this is greed by everyone BUT the NCAA. It is the pressure from fans, schools and employers of those brand managers. The NCAA made rules and said if you want to come here, follow these. People did illegal things to break the rules.

    Paying players wouldn’t solve this problem. People always want more.



  • I would like to see schools agree to simply pay their coaches what they think they are worth rather than relying on shoe companies to put the icing on top. Every school should agree to an exclusive apparel deal if they want it, and the schools should not be taking cash. The cash part of these contracts makes no sense–what do the companies get except access and the ability to say they sponsor ABC Univ? The access side lends itself directly to unethical arrangements.

    Ok, enough fantasy. Back in the real world…



  • Legalize anyone paying the players for any service the players are now currently rendering; then no one goes to jail in this case. It is stupid punishing coaches and players for going with the highest bid for their services. STUPID! And cruel!!!

    If adidas wants to pay more for more players to go to adidas-contracted schools, than Nike, then that’s what they should do.

    College basketball is still college basketball now that players are getting $150k under the table, instead of $50 bucks way back when.

    It wouldn’t change it if you paid them $10 million to go to an adidas school, instead of a Nike school.

    Jail is just silly.



  • @HighEliteMajor

    I agree. Athletes do not have to attend college and they are free to play elsewhere. The Wall Streer Journal estimated that athletes receive benefits north of $200K during a normal college stay.

    Most every college student…make that all college students I know would love to be able to attend school with all expenses paid while living in the best accommodations on campus, perhaps even in town, having dietitians preparing his meals, the best coaches and trainers developing his skills an tutors helping him with school work and taking overseas junkets and leaving school with a degree, maybe even a graduate one and zero debt. A sweet deal if you ask me.

    …and yes, Bilas is a pompous ass that believes he knows more than anyone else…in other words, a typical dukie. 😁



  • JayHawkFanToo said:

    @HighEliteMajor

    I agree. Athletes do not have to attend college and they are free to play elsewhere.

    Except the NBA! I don’t see how you can play the “freedom” card unless you let kids go for the big $$$ out of high school.

    Let HS kids test the waters like underclassmen without losing their eligibility, then go to college if they don’t get a contract.



  • Hmmm…I like Bilas. Go figure.



  • It wouldn’t surprise me if most of these kids haven’t been receiving money on the side for years and years. From AAU coaches. From shoe companies. From “financial advisors”, etc. So, we as a university are not bribing players, but we have no idea if the shoe company paid a kid 250k to show up on our door. The system is corrupt because the shoe companies are corrupt, and our university is willingly taking money from these cads. The freaking head of Adidas (America) is caught red handed offering bribes, buying players for hundreds of thousands of dollars. So, if you believe in purity in the sport, if you believe that players should accept their scholarship as payment in full, then I would think it would behoove you to be for KU dissolving their partnership with Adidas immediately, if not sooner.



  • @mayjay I like him usually too. I think he is a pretty smart guy.



  • By Gawd, let’s go back to just two uniforms per year. Home and Away. Made of wool.

    Let the knee-high sock companies run the show for a while.



  • I would be careful of being too critical of the OAD rule.

    I posted an article last week about the NBA possibly starting “basketball academies” similar to the soccer academies in Europe run by the pro clubs. If this happens, big time college hoops as we know it is done. These academies would funnel the best talent directly into the GLeague (formerly DLeague), with only players that likely don’t have a pro future routed to college. The talent level of the top colleges would drop to the mid major level.

    The only way to stave that off is to become a part of the system because the talent is always going to flow to the money. There’s no reason why the schools, coaches and administrators should get rich while the players act as cogs in the money making machine. It’s assumed that the status quo will remain because its the status quo, but if the NBA decides they want more control of the development track, college basketball falls away.

    I’ve written many times before that the NBA has little use for a lot of the strategies employed at the collegiate level. Because of that, college basketball is not the ideal development environment for the NBA. If the NBA were to take on its own development environment (something that is clearly being contemplated), college hoops is now outside that circle. That is a plus for amateurism, but a huge minus for big time college athletics, especially considering that this would come with the opportunity for a lot of the top players to sign pro contracts right out of HS (similar to soccer) even if they go play in the GLeague for a year or two.



  • @justanotherfan People still watch CFB even though 95% of the players don’t go pro. People will still watch CBB even if the top 50 players of each class don’t play.



  • @Kcmatt7

    That means the quality of play is going to drop off. A school like KU no longer has the huge advantage in talent because there aren’t any five star guys to recruit. There aren’t a ton of four stars. For example, take Josh Jackson, Udoka and maybe Vick off last year’s squad. Our lineup is Svi, Graham, Mason, Coleby and Lucas (or Lightfoot and Lucas). That’s a major downgrade in skill.

    We laugh when the Big Ten has games that score in the 50s. That would be much more common in CBB because the talent wouldn’t be there to push the ball and score over solid positional defense. People would be asking “what can be done to make CBB more exciting?” and complaining about pace (lots more teams would be holding the ball through the shot clock). It would change the aesthetic of the game.



  • @justanotherfan And we would all still watch it.



  • @justanotherfan Although to assume KU wouldn’t have a major advantage is foolish. KU will still get the top players available and it will work its way down from there. KU might even be better off because we would be recruiting players who know they will be playing for 4 years. So we might actually get 3 of the top available 15 ever single season instead of fighting tooth and nail to get those guys to come and play for only one year.

    It could be more advantageous to KU to have that happen.



  • @ParisHawk

    Remember that the one year wait is not a NCAA/college but a NBA rule and they can always play overseas as many do.

    Just about every other career requires some or a lot of preparation before you can make a living, even McDonald’s requires you to start at the bottom and gradually move your way up the ladder. Why is it so unrealistic to expect an athlete to take a few months preparing before joining the League and making millions?

    I personally prefer the baseball rule, you can go to the Majors out of high school but if you choose to go to college you have to wait 3 years. As good or better rule than any I can come up with.



  • @Kcmatt7

    Agreed; we might actually see better basketball. I believe a team of 5 4-star seniors would beat a team of 5 OADs every time.



  • @Kcmatt7

    The new “top 15” would not necessarily be all that much better than the next 100 guys.

    As I have said many times, once you get past the top 30-40 players, the talent level begins to really flatten out. By the time you get into the 60s, the guy ranked #60 may not be discernibly better than the guy ranked 125th. The guy ranked 100th may develop more than the guy ranked 70th. These are all 4 year guys at that point, so getting the new #1 recruit (really the 50th or 51st guy in his class) may not be any advantage because that guy isn’t much (if any better) than the guy ranked 70th or 80th.

    You might see better execution of collegiate schemes, as @JayHawkFanToo posits, but because of the way basketball is, you can’t fake talent. At the end of the day, you can run all the pretty plays in the world, somebody still has to put the ball in the basket. Except most of those “put the ball in the basket” guys won’t be around.

    I would still watch, but I would probably skip more games. Part of tuning in (for me anyway) is to watch the playmakers because basketball is very hard to watch without playmakers.



  • JayHawkFanToo said:

    @ParisHawk

    Remember that the one year wait is not a NCAA/college but a NBA rule and they can always play overseas as many do.

    Funny that I never forgot that. I guess I need to mention everything I remember in every post so you don’t have to waste your time reminding me.

    Just about every other career requires some or a lot of preparation before you can make a living, even McDonald’s requires you to start at the bottom and gradually move your way up the ladder. Why is it so unrealistic to expect an athlete to take a few months preparing before joining the League and making millions?

    It’s unrealistic because of what has happened in reality. Athletes sure they are worth millions, often coming from families not well off, are tempted by unscrupulous folks who want their cut of the future bonanza.

    I personally prefer the baseball rule, you can go to the Majors out of high school but if you choose to go to college you have to wait 3 years. As good or better rule than any I can come up with.

    Different sports with different learning curves, but something like that would be fine with me. My point was, if we’re waving the freedom flag then give the HS senior the same “test the waters” option that underclassmen now have.



  • @justanotherfan I guess my point is, KU will still make millions on the next group of kids. The NCAA will still make billions. And, March Madness will still be fun to watch and will continue to be the 2nd most bid on sporting event. So even if the NBA started some sort of league, nothing would change.

    Personally, I don’t see a school/league like the one you are talking about ever gaining enough traction to become a reality. NBA and NFL have it made. People watch those college sports. So they don’t have to fund the “minor leagues” themselves. Why would they take on that risk? It doesn’t make any sense whatsoever. It doesn’t even benefit the players to become apart of this beginner league. That would essentially end the NBA draft, for which the players make a lot more money than they would being signed to minor-league deals through this several hundred-million dollar system that the NBA will never fund. Especially because it will make them basically no money whatsoever. Who watches the G-League right now? Nobody. And that has had tons of college studs run through it.

    If your argument is to still pay players, that is simply illogical. If people want to watch the best 18 year olds play against each other, they can start a league that pays them. Some have already tried, even offering up to $1m and the players still don’t go. So why would the NCAA start paying players if they have no competition? The NCAA has a set of rules. The NBA has a set of rules. They happen to overlap. And if players don’t want to follow those rules, then they can go somewhere else. But in the end they almost all end up going to college anyways.

    It is a free market and the NCAA is dominating.



  • People care about their alma mater. People don’t care about watching the same players in a minor league system. Jmo.



  • @Kcmatt7

    Exactly. My TV sports tier has several channels that show D/G League games and I have watched many games when KU players are involved and you see the stands and most games have at best a few hundred people in attendance; it really looks more like a practice game at a major program. The audience and interest are just not there.



  • @BShark

    I would venture to guess that a lot of college sports fans aren’t alums of the schools. I didn’t go to KU, but I am a KU fan. KU has thousands of fans that didn’t attend. If every school only had fans that were alums, the viewership would resemble D2 programs much more closely. That changes the math on profitability.



  • @justanotherfan No doubt there are lots of tshirt fans. These are entrenched brands as well though. We will see.



  • @justanotherfan Stormchaser’s average 5k per game. And that is tickets sold. Royals average 27k.

    Charlotte Hornets average 17k. UNC averages 18k.

    A minor league system isn’t profitable. In fact, it is a black hole that the NCAA has turned into a billion dollar industry. You can’t replace the tradition, nostalgia or camaraderie college sports has. It is watched at an emotional level a minor league system couldn’t develop for hundreds of years IF that.



  • How about a scheme whereby the proceeds from named jerseys and autographed balls and jerseys are put in trust with a 3rd party investment company (independent trustee), and then each year distributed to the athletes who are leaving. Have a system that allocates each kid some percent of his share of the yearly distribution according to the time spent there: graduates and 4 year nongrads get 1p0% of their total accumulation, 3rd years get 75%, 2nd get 50, and people leaving after one year get 25%.

    Obviously violates NCAA rules and Title 7, but back in HS debate we always had a plank of our Affirmative plans that said “All legislative changes needed to implement the Plan will be adopted.”



  • @mayjay Do you pay all athletes? Or just the ones who sold jerseys? Or just the basketball/football teams?

    And then that begs the question of why? Why would the NCAA or colleges do that? It just makes no sense money-wise. How hard has the NCAA been hit these past 15 years? Time and time again they get crapped on and do the politically incorrect thing. Yet every year, their bottom-line is better than the year before. They don’t care because they are holding all face cards while everyone else is holding 3’s.

    And if the NCAA had a kind enough heart to allow that, how do you regulate it? What if I’m a booster and I want you to come to school at KU. I can promise to pay you $1m for an autograph the moment you sign a letter of intent at KU. I mean that would make things even shadier.



  • Kcmatt7 said:

    @justanotherfan Stormchaser’s average 5k per game. And that is tickets sold. Royals average 27k.

    Charlotte Hornets average 17k. UNC averages 18k.

    A minor league system isn’t profitable. In fact, it is a black hole that the NCAA has turned into a billion dollar industry. You can’t replace the tradition, nostalgia or camaraderie college sports has. It is watched at an emotional level a minor league system couldn’t develop for hundreds of years IF that.

    Could not agree more…



  • ParisHawk said:

    It’s unrealistic because of what has happened in reality. Athletes sure they are worth millions, often coming from families not well off, are tempted by unscrupulous folks who want their cut of the future bonanza.

    Why is it unrealistic? It is not as if the student athlete will be out money since the school pays all of his expenses (and even some spending money) and provides a huge amount of resources to improve his skills. According to the Department of Education, expenses at KU are $147K per basketball player and only $23K per football player.

    0_1506722920217_upload-7fde7f91-f97c-4204-98a9-6ba5399d241a

    while the revenues generated by football are $30M versus $18M for basketball.

    0_1506723008024_upload-2a896cb8-e985-471c-b424-213ada486b0b

    The school spends a huge amount of money on each basketball player so it is not like the student athlete is doing the school a great favor, he is benefiting greatly himself not only because of all the benefit but also because of the exposure that greatly enhances his future earning power.

    Now, if a family is counting on a 17 or 18 year old to support it, then that is a bigger societal problem and more unrealistic.



  • @Kcmatt7

    Every college administrator in the country hope’s you’re absolutely right and that I’m dead wrong.

    Minor leagues aren’t generally popular because you have to pay the athletes while having much lower revenues than the pros.

    @Kcmatt7

    You posted some figures. Let’s add a little context. Charlotte Hornets average a bit over 17k per game over 41 home dates. UNC averaged 18k over 16 home dates. That means UNC drew a total of 293k for the season, while Charlotte drew 710k. Could college basketball be viable over a longer season with fewer marquee games? Plus, you’re comparing a pretty middle of the road NBA team to the national champions.

    And then there’s arena size. The Dean Dome seats 21,750. The Hornets arena (Spectrum Arena) seats 19,077. The Hornets were at almost 91% capacity for their games. The Heels were at about 84% capacity for theirs. Every NBA team last year but 5 was higher than 84% capacity for their home games. In the ACC alone, six league schools draw less than 70% capacity. And that’s for one of the premiere leagues in the nation!

    Only 11 NCAA teams drew more than 15,000 per game in 2016. Once you get past the top programs, the drop off is real and very fast. 43 schools average more than 10,000 fans. TCU (ranked 99th in attendance) averaged right about 5300. College basketball is hugely popular at the biggest basketball schools - Kentucky, UNC, Kansas, Louisville, Syracuse, Indiana, etc.

    A pretty good program in a major conference like Minnesota or West Virginia draws a little less than 11,000.

    The model is sustainable only because the players aren’t paid. That’s why there’s so much money out there.

    Minor league teams draw like colleges would draw if the best players went elsewhere. I know I am in the minority in that opinion, but you don’t have to look that far. If you look at the history of college hoops you will see that the money wasn’t there (relative to today) as recently as the late 1980s. There’s nothing that says CBB will remain this overwhelmingly popular (particularly if the level of play drops) at the biggest schools. Even a 5% erosion in attendance would be huge, particularly as you move down from the top 10 or 15.



  • @justanotherfan I guess we will find out. i just think you might be underestimating what it would take for the NBA to build the fan base and infrastructure to draw top talent. Even if done right, it might only have a 50% chance of success. It would be a logistical nightmare and create an unpredictable market effect. Not sure owners would be willing to gamble that much cash.



  • @Kcmatt7

    An NBA minor league doesn’t have to be profitable. It just has to develop players better. The league itself is profitable enough to invest in a development system that it controls. Profit is secondary.

    College sports, if they cease to be profitable, require a complete restructuring. An NBA minor league can operate at a loss because the parent club can subsidize it. A college cannot do the same over the long term.


Log in to reply
 

Looks like your connection to KU Buckets was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.