Blue and Gold Illustrated

June July 2018

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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52 JUNE/JULY 2018 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED MEN'S BASKETBALL BY LOU SOMOGYI T he recommendations released April 25 by the Commission on College Basketball — on which Notre Dame president Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., served — have the intent to clean up at least some of the cesspool that has become part of the recruiting culture that be- gan an FBI investigation last summer. How it will come to fruition, only time will tell. The commission — comprised of former college coaches, former col- lege and NBA players, university presidents and athletics directors — spent seven months addressing and outlining the myriad problem areas. One of them was the "one-and-done" situation where instead of a top high school player going directly from high school to the professional ranks — which luminaries such as Kobe Bryant or LeBron James did in their time — the NBA since 2006 required at least a one-year buffer before mak- ing the jump. It has become a charade for such players to major in "eligibility" for the first semester before playing for the school four or five months and then leaving right after for the NBA Draft. "It undermines and gives mockery to the very idea that these kids are coming here to get a degree," Jenkins summarized. Notre Dame head coach Mike Brey was encouraged with how much the NBA was positively involved in the discussions to help end the current system. "I really believe in 2020 the one- and-done will be gone," Brey said. "The first group the commission brought in was the NBA. I firmly believe that [NBA commissioner] Adam Silver and the Players Asso- ciation feel it's time and want to help. "[College basketball has] been an unbelievable farm system. They had it good with us — they need to help us a little bit now, and I really believe they feel it's time." THE 'G LEAGUE' DYNAMIC Top college players can still have the option to leave after one or two seasons in college basketball if they so desire. Furthermore, Brey doesn't foresee a system such as that in base- ball or hockey where a player is re- quired to compete at least three years at the collegiate level once he enrolls at a school. However, a new dynamic also in- cludes foregoing college and opting to enter the NBA development pro- gram known as the G League, spon- sored by Gatorade (hence the "G"). This spring, 6-9 five-star Syracuse recruit Darius Bazley decided to go directly to the G League to begin his potential future NBA career. "This is going to happen down the road and become more common," Bazley told Yahoo Sports' Shams Charania. "Someone has to start the fire — and I believe I'm going to do that. It's very important to me." Brey believes this will become a trend and has no objection to it. "The money is going to improve [in the G League], and I think that's a great option," Brey said. "Some guys just don't want to go to college. They want to practice their craft at age 18 right out of high school. … "I think that's a great option in- stead of faking it and going to college, because you don't really want to be there. You do have that option to earn [in the G League]. It's not over-the- top money, but it's good money." The Irish head coach also gives the thumbs-up to prospects entering their name into the NBA Draft prior REFORMATION WORK BEGINS Eliminating the 'one-and-done' rule won't necessarily help Notre Dame Head coach Mike Brey is bracing for what he believes will be a more competitive recruiting landscape that would be the result of abolishing the one-and-done rule, noting that "those people that recruit 'one-and-dones' are now going to recruit the same pool we recruit." PHOTO BY COREY BODDEN

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