first_img Published on February 24, 2018 at 10:26 pm Contact Sam: sjfortie@syr.edu | @Sam4TR Facebook Twitter Google+ DURHAM, N.C. — Jim Boeheim left his news-making press conference and made it about four paces before he suddenly stopped.“Lefty!” he yelped, and extended his right hand for the older man to shake. Standing in the doorway leading to the Cameron Indoor Stadium floor was Lefty Driesell, the 86-year-old former Blue Devil player and legendary college basketball coach whom Duke had invited back for Saturday night’s game. The two men sized up one another. “You look good,” Driesell said. “I got to,” Boeheim responded. “I work out. My wife will yell at me if I don’t. I’ve got teenagers!” AdvertisementThis is placeholder textDriesel shook his head and told the 73-year-old, “Stay young, man. Stay young.” Then Boeheim smiled warmly and walked down the hallway, farther away from his press conference that reflected thoughts formed long ago, farther away from one of his few peers who remember those times too.Here are three takeaways from Boeheim’s comments about recently unearthed NCAA violations by agents, their impact on amateurism and what college basketball does next. The involvement of agents is inevitableOn Friday evening, the ongoing college basketball scandal that originated in September took on new meaning. Yahoo! Sports published documents from the FBI probe detailing the expenditures of former NBA agent Andy Miller, his former associate Christian Dawkins and the agency ASM Sports. Expense reports and balance sheets in those documents detail what appear to be illegal bribes, benefits and/or payments to big programs and prominent current and former players. No player has been punished by the NCAA. Boeheim said that he’s known for decades — 30 years, precisely — that agents have been involved in the families of star players. He said he has no issue with agents involving players, Syracuse included, as long as it is legal. When payments and bribes are made, that’s where Boeheim said he draws the line. “This should not surprise anybody that agents are trying to get clients,” Boeheim said. “You have the one-and-done factor, you need to get them early. You need to get them. You can’t wait. That’s not surprising. The thing that’s been surprising this year is obviously that 60 coaches (are) involved.”Boeheim added: “We have blinders on. We have blinders on. Agents are going to do that.”College basketball players should not be paidBoeheim’s larger point when discussing agents lies in the fact that removing amateurism entirely from big-time college basketball is not a viable solution. Paying high-level college basketball players won’t mean agents will stop trying to go after young players, Boeheim said. The 73-year old then looked back to his playing days, when he played at SU from 1963-66, and went from walk-on to captain. He said he received a full ride throughout college, alluding to the fact that that may be enough, or nearly enough, compensation for players. Dino Babers, Syracuse’s head football coach, took a similar stance when asked in October whether college football player should be paid. Babers said a scholarship “is more than enough compensation.”“What’s so disheartening for me is when people who are so intelligent keep saying, ‘They’re making millions of dollars,’” Boeheim said. “We make our share just like everybody does at Syracuse. We make our share on the tickets. Our athletic department barely breaks even. If you just say, ‘Don’t have any other sports, and basketball makes $16 million, then we should be giving it all back for the players.’ But all that money (SU men’s basketball generates) pays for everything else.”By “everything else,” Boeheim referenced non-revenue sports, such as soccer, softball and field hockey, all of whose expenses exceed revenue. He later said that having athletes participate in endorsements would be “unbelievable.” It is unclear exactly why he said that, but he said, generally, that “we can try to do more in basketball … hopefully they’ll come through with solutions. We’ve got a great game.”The one-and-done rule ‘has to go’Established in 2006, the one-and-done rule requires U.S.-based players to be one year removed from high school before being eligible for the NBA Draft. Until then, players were eligible to enter the draft out of high school, like LeBron James and Kobe Bryant. But the rule was implemented because of concern over whether players were mature enough to enter the NBA. The result has been a college basketball landscape including players who have no intention to stay at school more than one season required. Ten of the first 11 picks of last year’s draft were college freshmen. Last year, it was reported that NBA commissioner Adam Silver was considering getting rid of the rule. He said he got the sense that it wasn’t “working for anyone.” There could be consideration of not scratching the rule altogether, but rather raising the minimum age to 20 to enter the draft. Boeheim is vehemently against the rule, he said on Saturday. “It won’t change the whole game, but (getting rid of) one-and-done would help,” Boeheim said. “Hopefully we’ll get guys who want to be in college. If they really want to go, they should be able to go (to the NBA out of high school). Bill Gates didn’t want to go to college. I think he did alright. Golf, tennis players don’t have to go to college. “I think that would help. It won’t change the whole thing. It will help somewhat. We have a great game … it’s not going to change a thing. Not one thing. There’s tons of good teams right now that don’t have a one-and-done. We can easily survive. That’d be a big step.” Commentslast_img

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