Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski went on a rant the other day on his radio show "Basketball and Beyond," complaining about the "understanding of tradition," and how Maryland doesn't have any.
This of course on the heels of Maryland's move from the ACC to the Big Ten.
Sports rants are generally a good listen. They usually consist of a guy who has a point he wants to make, but never knows when to cut himself off. This one was no different.
“A lot of these decisions are based on college presidents, chancellors and athletic directors who do not have a depth of understanding of the tradition of the institutions that they are leading, the athletic programs of the institutions that they are leading," said Krzyzewski. "And they’re making what I call current business decisions, without the knowledge of what they’re giving up for what they think they’re going to make."
Some of these decision-makers may not know what they're giving up, whether they're too young to appreciate it or not with the program long enough. But they do know what they're going to make, and that's a whole lot of money.
We can whine all we want about tradition and loyalty, but why waste time. We're measuring dollars versus memories here.
If the option is available, somebody's going to take it. Maryland was presented with an opportunity for growth and financial gain, and they took it.
Coach K said Maryland will be "outsiders" in the Big Ten. I have a feeling that's not going to bother them. This isn't a high school kid with a fragile self-esteem who has to make new friends because his family is on the move. It's a university that needs money, and will be getting it by relocating to the best basketball conference in the country.
It sounded like Coach K took this personal. Like he was having a party, and Maryland decided to leave early.
“This is an assault on tradition,” Krzyzewski said. “What sets us apart from the pros? What sets us apart from the rest of the world? Intercollegiate sports is really something that only the United States has. No other country has that. And our thing is based on all the right values: loyalty, honesty, tradition. The branding that you have gotten from doing that has elevated the academic institutions that those athletic programs represent. And doing things the way we’re doing it now, based on money, I think it takes away from the academic missions and the innocence that an academic institution has.”
Everything he said made sense. It was just unrealistic.
Of course doing things based on money take away from the integrity, but integrity doesn't help rebuild a program fast enough. I'm not saying I agree with it, but it's just the way the world works. Criticizing is just a waste of breathe and time.