NCAA committee calls to end one-and-done as NBA, NBPA target 2020
The Commission on College Basketball called for an end to the one-and-done system, as well as the implementation of lifetime bans for cheaters in the “deeply troubled” sport Wednesday morning.
Flanked by former Navy center David Robinson and former Duke swingman Grant Hill, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who headed the 12-person commission, announced the findings from Indianapolis as the 60-page report was released.
The committee was established by the NCAA in October after four college basketball assistant coaches were among the 10 figures charged with federal crimes in a corruption sweep that brought to light bribery and kickback schemes related to recruiting. Rice was joined by college administrators and former coaches and players, who were tasked with finding ways to reform the game.
“The levels of corruption and deception are now at a point that they threaten the very survival of the college game as we know it,” the committee wrote. “It has taken some time to get here, and it will take time to change course.”
First among the committee’s recommendations was the separation of the collegiate track from the professional track. Rice and the other committee members requested that the NBA and NBPA make 18 year olds eligible for the NBA draft rather than maintaining the model that forces basketball players to be 19 years old or one year removed from high school before entering the draft. The one-and-done system has been in place since 2006, and is a rule controlled by the NBA and its union. NBA commissioner Adam Silver has suggested recently that he is ready to lift that requirement.
ESPN reported Wednesday morning that the NBA and union's discussions on eliminating the rule have the 2020 NBA Draft as a possible target date for the change.
The committee proposed the NCAA form a program for certifying agents and making them accessible to players from high school through their college careers. As of now, college players can only sign agents when their college careers are over.
The committee also found that the NCAA’s investigative and enforcement processes require a complete overhaul in order to effectively deter rule-breakers. If the committee’s ideas are adapted, Level I violations would be punishable with up to a five-year postseason ban and the forfeiture of all postseason revenue in that period.
“The investigative arm must be independent and empowered to require the cooperation of witnesses and the production of documents, including financial information, from NCAA member institutions and their employees and contractors, with significant penalties for non-cooperation,” the committee wrote.
Greater transparency from sneaker companies was also requested. Two Adidas employees were named in the federal corruption case, and money was allegedly routed from the apparel company to the families of top recruits.
Rice was scheduled to present the commission's report to the NCAA's Board of Governors and Division I Board of Directors later on Wednesday.
"Today's announcement from the Commission on College Basketball is a necessary step to addressing the issues our game faces in light of the Department of Justice investigation,” said Jim Haney, Executive Director of the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC). “We were fully supportive of the Commission's formation and its charge, and knew impactful change was coming. The NABC thanks the Commission for seeking the input of coaches throughout the process, and we remain committed to working with the NCAA to turn the recommendations into legislative action."