So, I cheated

March 13, 2008 at 3:54 am | Posted in basketball, clif, football (american) | 2 Comments

NOTE: This was actually a response to brian’s post “the tallest filmmaker ever.”  It was longer than I intended, so I turned it into a post.  This way I’ll feel a little less guilty for never contributing.

Maybe this year I’ll actually write a post about the NFL draft instead of just talking about it.

Since I don’t pay nearly as much attention to the NBA and it’s draft as I do the NFL and it’s, I was wondering how much the March Madness tournament affects players’ draft stock.  If a top prospect sucks it up in the tourney, could that drop him down in the draft?  I hope not.

With football, it seems like analysts and scouts are too willing to throw a good college career out the window if the player has a poor bowl game/senior bowl/combine.  Every year there are ‘workout warriors’ who measure off the charts at the combine and they fly to the top of the rankings, their mediocre college career goes ignored and then they bust.  Usually.

On the other hand (and again, since I don’t pay that much attention to basketball, I might be making this up), it seems like basketball players can sometimes skate by on hype and be drafted high.  Kids coming out of high school – the Mayos, Odens and El BJs – who are sufficiently hyped seem like they can make a top pick based on reputation as long as they don’t completely implode during their lone college season (for those that are now forced to do a year; for the rest, I guess if they don’t go to jail or crash their Hummers or whatever). 

It seems backwards.  At least if my assumption that March Madness doesn’t make to much difference in an athletes draft stock is right.  If there’s a sport where one player can take over a game in a high-pressure environment and lead his team to a W, it’s basketball.  I’d think a lot can be learned about a top player based on his performance in the post-season.  Where as in football, all a good bowl game performance shows is that a player will give full effort in a stupid, pointless game.  While it’s nice to know you’re getting 100% all the time, I don’t think players should be penalized for not caring about bowl games.   Nobody else does.

Either way, talent should largely be judged by the body of work throughout their career in both sports.  But, what do you think?  How much impact does the tournament have?

(By the way, I realize the B-ball names I mentioned are terrible examples, as James lived up to the hype, Mayo probably won’t go top 5 and Oden…well, we’ll see.) 

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  1. the tournament make a small impact on where a ball player will go int he draft..some teams don’t care, others will drop you like a bad boyfriend…. I love March Madness

  2. i think that with basketball, playing college ball will almost always drop your stock in the draft. if you look at mayo, he would have been a top pick if he was able to come out last year, but playing on usc for year has hurt him, draft-wise. even though he’s shown that he can adjust his game to play on team. or like noah, who if he would have came out after florida won their first championship would have been drafted higher. winning another championship ultimately hurt his draft status. that doesn’t make any sense.

    but i guess that’s not always true. carmelo secured a top pick due to his championship run with syracuse. i’m really at a loss on how teams rate prospective draft picks in the nba. judging by recent drafts, i think the people rating prospective draft picks for nba teams have no idea what they’re doing. it’s all guesswork and luck and how well a player fits into the team’s system.

    but i do agree that there’s an overemphasis on the combine in the nfl.


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