Former President Barack Obama discussed the state of basketball during an appearance at the annual Sloan Sports Analytics Conference last week.
Obama encouraged the NBA to develop an alternative, junior league – essentially a restructured G League – “so that the NCAA is not serving as a farm system…with a bunch of kids who are unpaid but are under enormous financial pressure,” via Reason.com:
“It’s just not a sustainable way of doing business,” said Obama. “Then when everybody acts shock that some kid from extraordinarily poor circumstances who’s got 5, 10, 15 million dollars waiting for him is going to be circled by everybody in a context in which people are making billions of dollars, it’s not good.” Creating an alternative league for people eventually headed to the NBA “won’t solve all the problems but what it will do is reduce the hypocrisy” of pretending that all student-athletes are both students and athletes.
Recent federal documents released by Yahoo Sports exposed NCAA violations by more than 25 basketball players and 20 schools.