Duke Blue Devils men’s basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski held his first preseason press conference for the 2017-18 season Tuesday, and while he did spend the first few minutes addressing his young team, Coach K talked for about 25 minutes on the FBI probe that shocked the college basketball world last week.
He didn’t make any excuses for Louisville coach Rick Pitino, but he made it pretty clear that college basketball needs to change.
“The landscape of basketball for a player from middle school, high school, college, pros, keeps changing,” Coach K said in his Tuesday press conference. “The landscape for the player keeps changing. We in college have not changed as much as the landscape has changed. The landscape before we get them has changed dramatically. And certainly, the NBA in that has changed dramatically with money, the one-and-done, whatever. We are not quipped right now to handle that. We don’t have a good model.
“We don’t have a model with what fits in basketball.”
Interestingly, Krzyzewski didn’t name Pitino by name and failed to say what was reportedly done at Louisville was illegal, instead choosing to say it “was bad” or that it’s “not what we want.” Coach K also said that this isn’t an issue everywhere.
“I think college basketball is great. And I think college basketball is like anything, it’s an industry. It’s not just a sport. It’s like anything human, there’s things that have happened that are great, there’s things that happened that are medium, and then there’s things that happened that are bad. Last week was bad.
“It doesn’t mean all of college basketball is bad. It also doesn’t mean that that’s necessarily the tip of some iceberg. I don’t necessarily agree with that. I think the iceberg is really good.”
Most importantly, though, Coach K stressed when fixing the college basketball landscape, the kid’s best interest should be the top priority. He explained that business for top basketball recruits didn’t start until they were finished with college, but now it begins in high school and even middle school.
As an example, Coach K said parents in high school running AAU teams may accept gifts from apparel companies for their kids to wear. In some cases, Nike might even send a great AAU basketball team to Italy to play, and at that level, it’s completely legal. Krzyzewski said that should continue because it’s great for both the kids and their families.
Obviously, that is also legal at the NBA level, but in between in college, it’s not. Coach K didn’t explicitly say it should be legal, but that change was needed in college.
“I’ve read so much, and a lot of it, most of it is was really interesting. Nobody has the solution. Federal budget people have the ideas. So how do we figure that all out? How do we figure that all out?”
Krzyzewski said who alters the landscape is another issue too.
“And who figures it all out? To me, that is the biggest question. There’s no who. There’s no who.
“There’s a group called who, but they don’t figure out this particular thing. So that’s one of the problems with our culture. We aren’t running this the way a billion dollar industry should be run. We try to put a circle into a square. That’s what men’s college basketball is. It’s not a bad circle, it’s a great one. But it cannot be done like a square.”
The post Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski weighs in on college basketball landscape: ‘We don’t have a good model’ appeared first on Diehards.
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