Evaluating The One-Year Rule, Post-Draft.

A lot of consternation has gone into the NBA’s rule on barring high-school players from entering the draft directly, and now, with the 2007 draft out of the way and one-and-done Greg Oden and Kevin Durant now pros, it’s probably worth a look back at how it has panned out so far, especially with the next class of one-and-dones (so everyone assumes) in USC’s O.J. Mayo, UCLA’s Kevin Love, and K-State’s Michael Beasley on the way to the college game.

Andy Katz at the four-letter has deduced that the new rule has made NBA personnel look harder at the college game; thus, more upperclassmen are getting looked at along with the super froshes.  The logic works for me — it’s easier to look at the players and make judgments now that everyone, save the foreign players, are on the same playing court, for the most part. But let’s note that most of these upperclassmen went later in the first round — because that’s highly important. Teams doing well enough to draft outside of the lottery were smart enough from the get-go to not get psyched into drafting players that weren’t ready for the pressure and change in game. The benefit for the NBA has been obvious; that was never really in question — Oden and Durant came into the draft with the general argument about just who should be taken first after a season of hype on the college courts.

Now, with Mayo, Love, and Beasley, their respective programs are prepared to deal with the possibilities of one-and-done — which still leaves the jury out on whether this is ultimately good for college basketball as a whole.  USC’s Tim Floyd makes a salient point here: it’s all about how attractive and well known your program is:

“The premier programs that just select talent won’t be hurt as badly,” he said, “Carolina being a team, for example, that can easily replace Brandan Wright” — taken eighth overall by Charlotte. “They just plug in the next guy. They may be four deep at that position; they’ll be fine.

“Georgia Tech? Tech isn’t always accustomed to having two early entry picks” — forward Thaddeus Young went No. 12 overall to Philadelphia; guard Javaris Crittenton went to the Lakers at No. 19 — “and may have a more difficult time replacing them and have a couple of down years.”

The hype storm is helped by having the players do at least one year in NCAA ball, but still, the only consensus is how good the rule is for the players and the pro organizations. It’s been good for the college game in terms of exposure of those stars, but that’s really all we can say at this point — the real test will be after a full recruiting cycle, say 3 or 4 years.

2 Responses

  1. Tim Floyd lost all credibility with me when he ‘signed’ Ryan Boatwright…

  2. One possible thing that could positively impact smaller programs – if big schools are willing to offer scholarships to “one-and-done” kids, couldn’t a few longer-term players slip to smaller schools? Or, at least, to lower-tier schools in big conferences, shunting a few more talented dominoes down the rungs? I don’t know, but the question came to me while I was reading.

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