What's good in foresight, many times is bad in hindsight. My personal article, part 1. Read and feedback please!
Da'Sean Butler, West Virginia University. Averaged 17.2 PPG, 6.2 RPG, 3.1 APG, and 1 SPG.
Kalin Lucas, Michigan State University. Averaged 14.8 PPG, 4.0 APG, 1.2 SPG.
Luke Harangody, Notre Dame University. Averaged 21.8 PPG, 9.1 RPG, 1.6 APG.
What do these three players have in common?
All three are exemplary student-athletes. Three of the best college basketball players over the past 4 years. Three kids who leadership abilities and willingness to do whatever it takes to win are unquestioned and admirable. Three kids who went through thick and thin, emotionally and physically, all of the ups and downs that come with being the leading talents of top teams in the nation, that they individually lead to the NCAA Tournament. And these three kids were down for the count with debilitating injuries when their teams needed them on the court the most.
The college experience is one most kids enjoy. The ability to have fun with friends being on your own for the first time. The chance to have an education on a full athletic scholarship. The pride of playing for your school and the support you get from the student body. The opportunity to play the game you love without any of the pressures that come with being a professional. With all of the undeniable positives of college athletics, the truth of the situation is, for many of these kids, their goal is to use their college careers as a stepping stone for their future professional careers. In the cases of Butler, Lucas, and Harangody, those chances to play the game they love in the NBA for a living have taken a substantial impact due to their respective injuries.
While it isn't fair, the harsh reality is that those are the risks a student-athlete makes by deciding to stay in school, when they have the opportunity to realize their dreams.
Sam Bradford was projected as the potential number 1 overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft as a QB out of Oklahoma University. He was coming off a season which was considered one of the best in recent memory for a college quarterback, with 50 TD passes and only 8 INT, almost 5000 yards passing, and a 68 percent completion rating. He made the decision to give up the number 1 draft pick and stay in school, wanting to win a championship and not wanting to let go of the college experience. Fast forward one year, 2 shoulder injuries and shoulder reconstruction surgery and the virtual loss of his entire junior season in Norman, Bradford is not assured of being the first QB taken in the draft this year.
Matt Leinart was the clear-cut number one overall draft pick of the 2005 NFL Draft, when he decided to come back for his senior season at USC university. He ended up being picked 10th overall in 2006, losing tens of millions in the process, and being stuck behind Kurt Warner in Arizona and not having the chance to start on a full-time basis until this upcoming season, his 5th NFL season.
Scottie Reynolds was a projected top 10 overall pick in the 2007 NBA draft after bursting on the scene as a freshman at Villanova university. After making the decision to stay in school until his senior season, Reynolds is now likely to go undrafted in the upcoming draft.
These stories are a cautionary tale of what happens when a college athlete has the potential to begin a professional career has the potential to begin his professional career, and doesn't take advantage of the once in a lifetime opportunity. For every Omar Cook story that gets extremely publicized, you have many a Reynolds, or Leinart, or Bradford, a kid who stays in school too long and doesn't go for the golds in the outstretched hands in front of them, until the well has dried. Every year staying in school for a potential high draft pick is one more year of a new batch of new players taking up available positions. As an adult, a student-athlete owes it to himself to take his game to the next level if that job availability presents itself. The risks of not doing so outweigh the massive rewards. In any normal circumstance, if you have a great job opportunity, doing something you love to do, you wouldn't turn the job down; you would take the job. Why would athletics be any different a scenario for any college kids, especially as one does not have the luxury of predicting the future, and their potential standing in future drafts.
i see the point your trying to make but sam bradford is still gonna be the number one pick... and kalin lucas isnt a senior and still has eligibility... so it really doesnt mean anything for them... article kinda didnt make sense because you used examples that really didnt fit...
Bradford may or may not be the first overall pick. He may or may not be the first QB taken. He is sort of a wildcard in the whole situation, even though last year, he was no questions asked the #1 pick. If he is #1 this year, then he is a rare success story of someone who stayed in school when they left everything on the line, but still didn't hurt their future careers. But then for every Bradford, there is a Willis McGahee who destroyed his knee when he was predicted to be a top 10 pick. Look at him now; he's a backup for the Ravens.
As far as Kalin, he was expected to enter the draft this year. He still may, but now his draft stock this year and next year has taken a major hit, since it will be 6 months until his injury is fully healed, and that isn't talking about getting into playing shape. If he entered this year without getting hurt, he could have snuck in the top 20 or so simply because of the lack of PG depth, but the many teams looking for a solid 1 like him. He unfortunately screwed himself up with the injury, and it could impact his entire life.
I can change some of the examples up, basically the point is, people always talk about Omar Cook or Sebastian Telfair, but there are the same type of examples on the other side of the equation. Especially this year, given the likely lockout and the reduction of salaries with the new CBA. Personally, I have thought this way since I really understood the draft, and I've never understood why no-one else did, if you are a potential high draft pick, you should enter the draft, without question.
I thought you could have given some better examples but id o understand where you come from. Cook never made it in the NBA though and Telfair may have gone to college but got drafted 13 or so and is not a decent NBA player more a bk up than a starter but he is a legit NBA guard though.
Better examples to choose from, although I think Leinart and Reynolds are basically picture perfect examples, I can understand why Bradford wouldn't be.
And as you say, for all the negative talk about Telfair, he is legit NBA backup PG. Would going to college make him better? Perhaps make him more ready for the NBA, but talent level is talent level at the end of the day. If you have the talent, and you have the first round opportunity, you should take advantage, no matter how raw quite frankly. Because NO college player is genuinely "ready" for the NBA; it's a whole different animal. It depends which players can translate their games and learn the fastest, and college ball doesn't always help a kid learn and function well on the NBA level. A guy like Telfair probably would have been exposed in college.
Also, I think that there is no point in many of these kids going to college when school is an afterthought to them. If you have a job opportunity, if someone wants you to be an employee for their company, then you take the job if it make sense for you and you want to do it. Same thing it should be for high school b-ball kids. If they want to go to the NBA, that is their decision. I don't think the NBA has a right in telling a kid they can't go after their dreams, and then watch those dreams die in the process. And if teams want these kids under their banner, then so be it. It makes a mockery of college basketball and destroys a teams' chemistry and the fans' ability to learn to love and appreciate their teams and players, because every year they see different faces, because of the one and done rule. So, personally, I think pretty much the entire situation is a problem, and there needs to be adjustments made to improve it.