Sunday, May 11, 2008

Are We Just Blind?.....Or is it No One Really Cares?

The More Things Change The More They Remain The Same!!!!

When will the foolishness stop? When will Parents, HS Coaches, Guardians, and others realize the games that are played with young players every day? Kids are being mentally violated daily by agents, Street Agents, want to be Agents, College Coaches, HS Coaches, Groupies, and even AAU/Rec Coaches! Can folks not see or do they just think their kid will not suffer? Do they feel they are the ones getting over on those sending gifts and lying? It's like I always say to my buddies, greedy gold digging folks are the easiest folks to get over on because they are blinded by their own greed! So when kids accept stuff as early as 9th grade, and yes it happens, they are just getting ready for years of mental manipulation.

Lets get real here if you do not mind. I just read where OJ Mayo was receiving money, goods , and services while at USC and in HS. Well guess what? Who did not know this? Everyone knows OJ, and many others like him ware benefiting from being great HS players. Lets look at the sneaker camps. By NCAA rules, kids had to pay their own way to the camp. Do you honestly think OJ, Labron, and others like them ever paid air fair? Of course not. The air fair came via money paid to AAU/Rec teams for expenses. They in return pay for all airfare. Convenient huh? How about the gear? Companies cannot supply kids with 100 pair pf sneakers, 75 warm up suits, sandals, t shirts, plus stuff for their parents. But they can fund AAU/Rec teams with a budget and $100,000 dollar clothing deals which allows the teams to provide clothing to players, especially the great one's. One great player on a HS team makes it possible for that particular team to be outfitted from head to toe by sneaker companies.

Lets get back to things we look the opposite way about. Agents are at College, HS. and even AAU games because that is what they do based on the business they are in. We see them. The coaches see them and even warmly greet them. This happens because on many occasions Agents help colleges get players and the coach in return sends the player back to the agent when the player is ready to turn pro. Some agents even pay for a particular player to attend certain schools. And honestly we also know who those schools are and so does the NCAA! It is for this reason schools such as Rutgers and SHU have a difficult time getting the true 5 star players. And when you see a 5 star guy attend a mid major with a 3200 seat gym, it's either because Dad is the coach or they are really benefiting from being there if you know what I mean.

Now lets look at the Big East. I have heard there are lots of perks at certain schools. I can even tell you that some schools the players are treated as if they are professionals in more ways than one. This is mostly a result of the money to be made and the pressure on Coaches to win. When a job is on the line all bets are off. And this goes for certain Ivy institutions as well. You should see some of the summer jobs kids get prior to attending to play basketball.

Looking at a kid like Ebanks? Rutgers has done an exceptional job but how does the community of New Brunswick compete with the city of Memphis? And do not be surprised with the positions that will be available at Federal Express very soon. The job description might just say: Experience working in large city environment such as Long Island City lol. They will put a full court press on this kid and all he might see is future and present opportunities in addition to basketball if you know what I mean.

Think West Virginia and Huggy along with two KILLER Assistant coaches will not go the extra yard? Think again! They will get it done by any means necessary. Trust me and if you do not see this than you are indeed blind.

That leaves Rutgers who would be a great place. But when trying to recruit a kid from a family where the Mom and dad are not together, a kid who has been spoiled for years and given everything, it is a hard job closing the deal on this one. Rutgers has a chance and I hope they are successful for their sake as well as for Ebanks sake. because when it is said and done, basketball will be a distant memory.

Now lets stop being so surprised by what is happening on the basketball scene. Just sit in the stands at an AAU event and watch what goes on around you as much as the actual games. Buy will you be surprised.


John said...

LF, very interesting comments. A chain of reasoning occurs to me after reading this. Perhaps you will point out my errors of understanding.

Let us assume that key agents are behind getting key young players to certain schools and/or regions and/or locations - ie, "get the hot players to where the hottest fans are" - ie, maximize revenue.

Let us assume (and trust) that most/many schools are doing their best to be much more visible and successful. There are many avenues for this to happen.

With these basic assumptions, the following chain of reasoning occurs to me:

If one of the most visible NYC-area schools somehow beats the odds and lands 5-star recruits and THEN delivers results (goes to NCAA tournament, gets to Sweet 16, does it again, etc), the "maximize revenue" principle will very likely kick in: the key agents will begin to direct the key recruits to the other key schools in this market because "it is now hot and will generate revenue".

Is this the foundation for your thoughts - thinking very cold-bloodedly about the economics - for how the success of one school (Rutgers) can and will ultimately benefit others in this market?

I will also note that the nature of the external forces acting upon the young people is scary. One wonders seriously about our values and purposes.....

Thank you again for your very stimulating thoughts - and pardon me for any of my mistakes above.

Richard said...

We R NOT blind, and almost all of us DO care...and, your constant siren song about how bad it is out there and how much we "don't know" is getting pretty redundant. We DO know. And, we mostly decry those such as USC, UM, IU, etc, etc....
And yes, some of us have not experienced the AAU circuit, but some of us have not experience war either...but that doesn't mean that folks out there have no idea how bad it is.
Simply put, some out there may not have been as involved in AAU ball as you, but your high horse is not exactly looking so shining when all is said and done. After all, you've continually talked about "exposes", and yet, this is all we get?
Think about it after all: Johnson actually did something about "it".


LFBall said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LFBall said...

There are good and bad guys in all aspects of sports. Someone on the Rutgers board actually called me a wannabe street agent. Wow!!!! That's low considering I have never taken a dime from a kid or anything else. I have received a shirt here and there from folks, but that's about it. Wannabe coach maybe lolol. Street agent? LOLOLOL, never. Some folks are so mean spirited.

As far as me exposing folks? That was not the purpose. The purpose was to say the folks getting HUGE DOLLARS need to do that! I was only saying how clear it was. And as far as the guy exposing all of this stuff, he did it because he was angry and left out of the loop and saw no money coming his way. He was far from being a re-born good guy.

Lastly. This is only a blog. If you or anyone else is tired of what I say, DO NOT READ IT EVER!!!!! I have no problem with folks disagreeing. But to say I am writing stuff you do not care to read, don't! This is why I do not write on the message boards any longer. I do not wish to bore folks with my thoughts

Richard said...

Ummm, you misunderstand L. I never said "tired" of reading your blog. You need to realize that much at least.
As for someone calling you a "wannabe"? Well, take the boards with a very generous grain of salt. They are often like a sandbox in both maturity level and IQ: if someone doesn't like you, they'll call you a name. ;)
Here are a few good ones from Dan Wetzel on Yahoo about the Mayo thingy:

>"If you didn’t see this one coming, don’t feel bad, you’re no more naive and gullible than NCAA president Myles Brand."

>"The reality for college basketball isn’t whether there was one potential lottery pick who got paid by agents; it’s whether there is one who didn’t."

>"What businessman wouldn’t pay $500,000 to get, say, $7 million back?"

>"The blame will assuredly fall on Mayo since a supposed greedy kid is an easy target. The truth is he was forced to operate in a business model that can’t work.";_ylt=AloGFRi8Nz09iGQpwRZRJXEOvbYF?slug=dw-mayo051108&prov=yhoo&type=lgns

(Wetzel: Who's to blame?)

...and that last one is not to condone what OJ did/didn't do. But I'd say it's the truth.


TripleRLtd said...

Hey Ball, I've decided to start my own blog, too.
Keep in touch, eh? ;)