by Lowell Browning
With all of the government bailouts and take-overs maybe President Obama , a hoop-lover, can work with congress and see if a little bit of regulation is in order for SportsCenter.
Now, don't get me wrong. I LOVE ESPN, and SportsCenter in particular.
But, from a coaching standpoint I'm not sure that the 'highlights' and top-ten plays of the day are not a real part of why American basketball is seeing such an influence from abroad and the impact that the foreign players have made in both the NBA and the big-time college hoop programs.
I coached basketball on many levels. From buddy-leagues to senior-leagues and from grade-school ball to three years as a high school assistant and was a varsity head coach for nine years.
Like many of the coaches that I have worked for, under, around and with we have collectively concluded that the individual skills are not what they used to be. And I understand that the number of coaches who either don't know or teach fundamentals has grown, largely because of the way some state required full-time employees of their respective county systems fill all of their coaching positions.
While understanding the desire to have teachers, who work within their system to man those positions, all too often there are teachers who have little to zero knowledge of fundamentals, who 'hang-around' the building' and draw a coaching check while the students who want to play, develop and get a good sports experience are those who in the end will suffer.
Today, with athletes who work hard and play and condition, are getting a class every night when the SportsCenter highlight and plays of the day feature high-flying dunks, finger-rolls, reverse lay-ups, and excessive celebration.
Oh, and those daggone three-pointers!....oh for the days of a simple jab-step dribble and where did the art of a 12-foot jumper go?