by Canaan Freeman | Sports Editor
The game of college basketball is beginning to change as many more the extremely talented athletes are leaving directly after their freshman year in college. It truly is impacting the game in my opinion in a very negative way. The rule however in college football is that the players are required to stay a minimum of 3 years while basketball has no limit. In the late 1960’s UCLA won multiple championships back to back and the main reason for this was because they were retaining their players for all four years. Now the NBA is offering so much money that it is hard for the collegiate athletes to turn down the over to enter the NBA draft.
This year is a perfect example of this problem. 4 out of the top 5 projected prospects entering the draft are freshman. This also leads to a problem in recruiting for the school they left, due to having to fill the spots of the non returning freshman in addition to the departing seniors.
For the number 1 pick in this years lottery the experts are projecting that it will be Andrew Wiggins out of the university of Kansas. Wiggins was a highly recruited athlete out of highschool and was able to live up to the hype in the college. He led his team that was a much shorter run than expected and Kansas was eliminated by Stanford in the second round of the NCAA tournament.
The second most wanted player is that of Jabari Parker out of the University of Duke who was also very heavily recruited. Parker’s duke team lost in the upset of the year to Mercer In the first round which should not affect his draft stock in any way at all.
The 3 through 5 spots in the lottery are a toss up between Kansas center Joel Embiid, Kentucky forward Julius Randle, and Australian guard Dante Exum. Randle who was the least favored freshman to enter the draft ironically had the best run in this years tournament leading the wildcats to the national championship but coming up short to UCONN.
If all these players were to return to school it would make the 2015 tournament much more exciting and competitive but unfortunately the money is just too much to turn down. If the NCAA’s rule was a minimum of two years, it would fix many of the problems by allowing non-traditional colleges to compete with powerhouses which are currently winning a majority of the titles.