Posted on: April 19, 2008 9:39 pm

The NBA Draft

It has become my opinion over the years that the NBA draft is the time in a basketball players life that they care more about a paycheck than they care about the game.  I am not saying that this does not happen in other sports, but the NBA is the epitome of me first.  Team is not important.  The game is not important really.  What other sport is out there where there is such a desparity between college and the pros? 

Before you jump on me and say baseball, let me say this: Baseball is not played in it's intended form until you get to a professional level.  Playing with a piece of aluminum is not how Doubleday intended his game to be played.  That is not to say that playing with an aluminum bat is not fun or lessens the games for kids, but when a high school kid gets up to bat and starts swinging an aluminum bat at the plate it's a lot easier to get the ball to drop in a gap when it gets there twice as fast as if he had used a wooden bat.  But I digress.

I bring up the NBA draft because players are once again skipping 3 quality years of college, where it truly takes a team to succeed.  If you want to argue with me about needing a team in the NBA may I direct you to Eshibit A: Last season's Eastern Conference Finals.  If you don't know what I am talking about, you obviously didn't watch the Series or SportsCenter or listen to any talkshow.  LeBron James single handedly beat the living crap out of the Pistons.  So what is my point?  Most players that will enter this years draft will never be a star.  Some will never play with a star.  Most will collect a paycheck that is far more than they deserve to play a sport that lacks the appeal that it should have.  It isn't their fault that they get paid so much, but it is their fault that they pass up an opportunity to play one of the greatest games on earth for one of the most mediocre.  College basketball depends on a team to excel.  Texas didn't fall off the face of the planet when Kevin Durant left last year.  Yes, Ohio State had a drop off, but they were still the best of the worst, and probably could have made the tourney if every conference didn't get an automatic bid. 

I say all of that to say, boo to those that have already decided to leave early, and good for you who are staying.  Take your time and appreciate a great sport.  Enjoy it while you can.  Eventually, you will have to go make millions and never know what it feels like to play the sport you love again.

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: April 7, 2008 8:14 am

Someone Fire Billy Packer

I have been looking forward to this blog since Saturday night, but wish I had written it a couple weeks ago.  CBS's own Billy Packer is the worst college basketball announcer/analyst in the history of college basketball broadcasting.  The man is a complete and utter moron.  Every year the NCAA tournament comes around I get excited because it is the most exciting time of the year, the brackets get filled out and friendly wagers are made.  Then all of a sudden I realize that it isn't as great as it could be because CBS carries the tournament.  When will the contract expire and have ABC outbid CBS so that I can watch the game that I want since ABC has the ESPN networks at their disposal?  Yes, I know I can watch every game online.  I sure am glad I have a 52" laptop monitor just like my television.  Oh wait they don't make those? 

But not watching my favorite ACC teams play is not my biggest disapointment.  Billy Packer get's to call every marquee matchup.  When was the last time that fossil said something intelligent? Last week he said in an interview that the four coaches in this years Final Four are the best group to have ever assembled there.  Look back at the Final Fours of this decade, and I challenge you to not find at least 2 years where the coaches were far superior to this years group.  Aside from Roy Williams nobody has ever won a champioship (until this year).  Billy you have been calling the Final Four for 30 years (and torturing us with your stupidity along the way), please think before you say something and make yourself look less intelligent than we already knew that you were.

That brings me to the UNC vs Kansas game on Saturday.  With over 7 minutes left in the FIRST HALF Billy makes the observation that the game is over.  Sure UNC was down 28 points, but anybody with an ounce of basketball acumen knows that UNC is a streaky team and could erase that margin with the time left in the game.  And oh what do you know they got it down to 4 before they went cold again.  Even though they didn't come back and win, clearly the game was not over.  I knew it was over when the game was at 4 points and Billy told his enabler (Jim Nantz) that he didn't think that UNC was going to run out of steam.  Since there is no way that Billy can be right about anything that he ever says, UNC faltered and seemed to run our of steam.  So thank you Billy, thank you for announcing the championship game because it gives me another reason not to watch two teams I care nothing about.  Thank you for ruining every game I have ever watched that you have ad the pleasuer of a front row seat and a microphone.  Thank you for finally announcing that you are going to retire...oh wait that is just what I dreamed about last night.  Thanks for nothing Billy.  CBS please grow a set and realize you are employing someone that has no business doing the job that he is employed to do and fire the man.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or