March Madness vs Bowl Games….Which Tournament Produces More Talent For Their Higher Up?

Posted: March 18, 2011 in NCAA Basketball, NCAA Football

College basketball has so many mediocre teams, they want to expand these tournaments and I tried to watch the games Tuesday night and it was honestly just unwatchable, they were two bad teams and Seth Greenberg and Colorado were fuming because as D students, they think that their D students are better than your D students…but they’re both D students!

Think about this, not only do you have 68 teams in this tournament; you have 32 teams in the NIT. There’s also 24 other teams playing in another tournament that 90% of you have never heard of, that is going on right now, called “ The College Insider’s” tournament. There are 16 other teams in a college invitational tournament…yeah that’s right, these are all going on right now! You’re not aware of the latter ones, but they are tournaments created so that “everybody gets a medal” or that “everybody gets a ribbon”. We have 140 teams in tournaments right now, 68 at NCAA, 32 NIT, 24 at some College Insider tournament and 16 at another college tournament invitational.

My friend then says to me “yeah, but 50% of college football teams go to bowls” and that’s where our 2 hour argument ensued because I said to him “here is the difference” Of the 60 or 70 teams that get into bowl games, almost all of them have NFL players. “Well what do you mean?” you might ask. I said to him “go look at the Green Bay Packers alone…the best team in the league!” Their running back at the end of the year was from Buffalo. Jennings, their great receiver, is from Central Michigan, Donald Driver is from Alcorn State, and their offensive line had someone from Eastern Michigan and Central Florida.

I mean Peyton Manning’s offensive line; you’ve got Harvard, Western Michigan, and TCU. That’s not the way it works in basketball. Your NBA talent level comes from a very small group of powerful schools. I mean, go look at the NCAA basketball tournament, last year it was four #1 seeds, we’ve never had another lower than a 6 win the entire thing and we’ve almost had only a handful of teams lower than an 8 seed even get into the Final Four

In football, it’s a totally different ball game because you can have 35 bowls and you’ve got NFL players all over them. The top 15 wide receivers in the NFL this morning, I’m just going to list for you the schools that they went to: Alabama, Birmingham, Miami, Marshall, Mississippi, Monmouth College, Hofstra, LSU, Pittsburgh, Georgia Tech….you don’t see that in the NBA!!!

In the NBA, they are either international or they went to major schools, even when you look at the history of the NBA. Magic went to Michigan State…powerhouse, MJ went to UNC, Bird initially at Indiana, Wilt went to Kansas, Jabaar went to UCLA, Jerry West went to West Virginia, Hakeem and Drexler…Houston (at the time) Look at how many people school’s like Georgetown has put into the NBA or Duke….it’s a whole different ball game folks!

So what you have in college basketball right now is 140 teams in tournaments and NBA guys largely come from 12 of them!!  Wednesday morning, I wrote down the NBA’s 20 best players: Lebron…high school,  Kobe…high school (now, when I say high school for a guy, you know he would’ve gone to like Duke or Carolina or Kansas…those guys aren’t going to Xavier) Rondo…Kentucky, KG…high school, Pierce…Kansas, Dirk…overseas, Derek Rose…Memphis (great basketball school), Gasol…international, Dwight Howard…high school, Chris Paul/Duncan…Wake Forest (another great basketball program…generally) D-Wade went to Marquette (very good basketball program)…see the point here?

In the NFL, you go look at any offensive or defensive line….go look at the top 15 WR receivers, they come from teams that are even worse than bowl teams, and there is talent everywhere across the US in football. So my point is that, elite NBA talent comes from a tiny tiny group of schools. I remember watching the NBA draft last year, the top 10-12 players, who were going to get drafted, was my focus…because they are the legit NBA prospects.

Now removing the international guys, here are the schools that the top 10 or top 20 players go to:  UConn, Kansas, Duke has 2, Carolina has got 1, Kentucky has got 3 and Ohio State has got 2. Again, so my point is that…you can have a lot of bowl games in college football, but you still seeing elite talent everywhere! College football players go from Boise State to starting for the Jets! I mean the New York Giants won the Superbowl a couple of years ago…all 8 guys who were drafted made the team and all 8 of them played!! Like 3 of them played in 3 crucial positions.

The New Orleans Saints go to a Superbowl, they had a ton of guys who were like – the year before, playing for Hofstra! Hofstra doesn’t even have a football program anymore!!! But in College Basketball – even in the big tournament, there’s like 14 or 15 teams that are just junk…some of those round 1 games were just absolutely brutal. So when Seth Greenberg and Colorado come out and they are whining about “we don’t get into the tournament” I honestly don’t have any pity for you man! I feel much worse for Purdue who doesn’t get into a bowl game, even if they were 7-5….Purdue puts all sorts of guys into the NFL, they’ve got 15 guys in the NFL right now.

So I don’t have too many sports arguments with my buddies very often – like not very often at all, but I had one a couple of days ago and I just said to him “dude, when you go to like a major BCS bowl game or slightly below bowl…like the Outback Bowl game, you’ve got like 20 NFL guys on the team. They are either seniors, juniors or sophomore’s, but you have 20 NFL players on the team” Like think about it, you have a team like Alabama doesn’t have a single player on their defense that won’t get either drafted or invited to an NFL camp. Now, not all of them this year, but the sophomore’s in 2 years will get invited.

When USC won 34 straight, Pete Carroll didn’t have anybody on the defense – Clay Matthew’s couldn’t start, he didn’t have a single defensive player who didn’t get invited to a camp. So the talent in college football is so much thicker and deeper, it’s not even close! I just think it’s funny…there’s 140 basketball teams in college basketball participating in a tournament. In the NCAA, NIT, College Insider or the College Invitational….everybody has to get a ribbon! “Your good, 13-15…yah you’re good…here’s a ribbon…..9-19, you get a ribbon too!”

  1. Mike Crack says:

    Yeah, it’s true. I think a big part of it is that football is very system based so players who weren’t magical in college can come into the NFL, play in a system and blossom in it. Like you said, that’s where you get the Tom Bradys going from 199th pick in the draft to multi-year All-Pro. You just don’t see that in basketball, as it’s not as system dependent and the stars in college are the stars in the pros, and the players who weren’t amazing in college don’t become stars in the NBA.

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