NCAA Observations, The “Student Athlete”, and Who You Got, UK or UCONN?

Featured, Sports and Bets — April 7, 2014 at 2:06 pm by

After weeks of bracket busting upsets, student riots, and potential billionaire heartbreak it comes down to Kentucky and UCONN for the national title.  Neither team, after receiving eight and seven seeds respectively, were supposed to be here, but the overall talent of Kentucky and the incredible backcourt play of UCONN have propelled them to the finals.

Aaron Harrison hasn’t really played all that well overall (shooting less than 30% from the field), but he’s been the man in crunch time.  Clutch 25 footer to win…


Meanwhile, Shabazz Napier and Ryan Boatright absolutely bitched the SEC player of the year Scottie Wilbekin.  Wilbekin’s coach, Billy Donovan even said Wilbekin’s played crappy in the post game presser.  (1:50 mark)  Throws him right under the Final Four Bus.


So tonight it’s two basketball factories taking on each other in a game that neither were supposed to be in.  Still, it’s not really surprising that either is here.  Both have tons of talent, both are well coached and in this new era of parity, it’s probably only fitting that an eight seed and a seven seed battle it out.  Of course it would have looked a lot more parity-ish if the eight had been Memphis and the seven had been New Mexico, instead of two programs that have just recently won National Titles, but it is what it is.

Right now, UK is a 2.5 point favorite over the Huskies.   In order for me to give a shit and watch tonight, I’m going to have to wager.  I’ll take the points and UCONN, I think they do have the big men to counter UK (they proved that in the Florida win.)  and after watching Napier and Boatright destroy the UF backcourt, I can’t imagine them not dominating Kentucky’s.  They just gotta keep the ball out of Aaron Harrison’s hands if the game is on the line.

It does seem hard for most to root for UK’s one and done talent factory every year.  But honestly, how can you blame Coach Calipari for trying to recruit the best players in the country?  It’s a formula he is using to incredible success and besides, do we really believe in the “student athlete” myth anymore?  I know, there are thousands young men and women in colleges and universities playing college sports who will never be professional athletes and who are using their athletic abilities to help them earn a free college education.  That’s awesome and I would guess that most of them see the experience of playing sports in college as a memorable and positive one.  But let’s be honest with ourselves, the NCAA doesn’t give a shit about any athlete’s education, nor does care about what is good for the “student athlete” after college life.  The NCAA is there to make money, it would be refreshing if they would just admit it, and if they would let their labor force do the same.

The NCAA is all about learning and libraries…..




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