Far be it from me to be guy #320,540 to bemoan the precipitous fall of college basketball from the sporting relevance landscape but I figured now would be as good a time as any to take that annual glance at the athletes who would be gearing up for March Madness in a perfect world.
Since we don't live in a perfect world, I spend a lot more time these days watching the NBA along with the top soccer leagues in England and Spain. College basketball now much more closely resembles college baseball than college football in talent and overall product. Instead of watching basketball's "triple A," we now get "single A" with the pro leagues forced to sort through a player's progression up the rest of the ladder.
I'll still watch the tournament but when I ask myself why I just don't get quite as excited for tip off as I used to, the collage above reminds me why.
(Players left to right, top row: Greg Oden, Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry, Robin and Brook Lopez, Ty Lawson, Blake Griffin.
Middle row: OJ Mayo, Derrick Rose, Michael Beasley, Kevin Love, Jonny Flynn, Eric Gordon, Jodie Meeks.
Bottom row: Jerryd Bayless, James Harden, DJ Augustin, Mike Conley, Dejuan Blair, Hasheem Thabeet.)