Mike Krzyzewski addressed the media Monday, talking on topics from his interest in the Lakers to his interest in coaching the 2012 Olympic team and his Duke squad's roster makeup.
Add Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski to the list of college basketball coaches speaking out this summer against become known as the NBA’s “one-and-done” rule.
Three years ago, a new collective bargaining agreement between the NBA’s owners and players association effectively prevented players from entering the draft right out of high school.
The rule states that players must be at least 19 years old and one year beyond the graduation of their high school class before they can enter the draft. That’s led to a lot of players enrolling in college for one year of basketball before moving on to the pros.
Greg Oden, Kevin Durant and Michael Beasley have made big splashes in their only collegiate seasons. Krzyzewski said that’s helped the NBA by making them household names before they turn pro, but questions its value to college basketball.
“They’re part of the NCAA marketing machine and college basketball,” Krzyzewski said Tuesday at his annual summer news conference. “It’s a smart move (by the NBA). They don’t have to pay a cent. They get to see a kid for a year longer. And they’re marketed. I think it was fool’s gold, really (for college basketball). Oh, we get a kid for a year. I don’t think college basketball has benefited from that.”
Other coaches, including Oklahoma’s Jeff Capel, are bemoaning the rule that essentially forces some players to attend college against their will even though they may be ready for the NBA.
Brandon Jennings’ recent success in the NBA draft after a year in Italy might inspire more players to spend a year making money overseas rather than playing college basketball.
But some still will choose college even though they don’t have much interest in attending class. Capel told the Kansas City Star that the rule makes a mockery out of education.
Krzyzewski said a culture has developed among elite players outside of academic programs where it’s best that they go to the NBA.
“I’m not saying it’s a bad culture,” Krzyzewski said. “I’m saying it’s a different culture that leads to the NBA. Now you’re forcing them to go into our culture for eight months. I’m not sure that’s (good). We’ve already seen problems from it.”
Nonetheless, Krzyzewski sounded pessimistic that the one and done rule will change. It’s in the hands of the NBA players’ union and the owners, and Krzyzewski said it’s not the most pressing issue those parties bring to the bargaining table.
Krzyzewski said college basketball would be popular without one-and-done players because it can market the tradition of schools such as Duke vs. North Carolina while the pros hype player matchups such as Kobe vs. LeBron.
And the two most scandalous college stories of the summer – investigations of O.J. Mayo at Southern California and Derrick Rose at Memphis – both involved one-and-done players.
That’s not good for college basketball, and Krzyzewski doesn’t have an easy solution.
“I don’t know,” he said. “I don’t know how you change it.” – Ken Tysiac