A Passionate Letter To the NCAA Rules Commitee

Dan YokeCorrespondent IJuly 11, 2009

CHAPEL HILL, NC - MARCH 08:  Head coach Mike Krzyzewski of the Duke Blue Devils reacts as he sits on the bench with his assistant coaches against the North Carolina Tar Heels during their game at the Dean E. Smith Center on March 8, 2009 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

As I sit here staring at my crystal ball it has occurred to me that my crystal ball does show me the future, but it never tells me exactly what I want to know.

My crystal ball works in a similar way to the palantiri of “Lord of the Rings” fame.  It shows me events but leaves them open to misinterpretation.  So, although I have seen glimpses of crucial March Madness matchups, I can’t honestly say that I know exactly how they will play out.

But my device did leave me with one bit of information that I am sure I have not misinterpreted.

Throughout my search into the 2010 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament the image of Coach K has dominated my visions.  His image occurs over and over from the first game all the way through the final whistle in April.

This can only mean one thing!

No, this doesn’t mean that Duke will make a run to the finals this year.

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It means that Coach K will be the star of a new commercial this spring.  This commercial will be played 15 times per game minimally throughout the duration of the tournament.

This information does not in any way help my odds in Vegas, but it did lead me to ponder an NCAA rule change that would be fair to everyone and severely improve the station approval ratings from every basketball viewer.

It is a simple rule that could apply to every sport in college athletics. 

The NCAA should immediately consider a rule change that states that commercials that apply to, or promote, any school in the NCAA should only be allowed to run as long as that program is still in contention for the current title that the commercial in question is promoting.

To put it in layman's terms, this would mean that if your school loses in the first round your commercial can’t be aired after the first round.  If your school makes it to the finals then your commercial would also make it to the finals.

Being forced to endure Coach K promoted credit card, car, insurance, and video game commercials every year in recent memory for weeks after Duke is eliminated has led to a public outcry.  Many have stated that these commercials are an unfair recruiting tool to promote Duke at a time when recruiting is off limits.

Personally, I don’t agree with this theory.  If a player is swayed to attend a university by watching a commercial I’m not sure that I want that particular player on my team.  A player who is that dumb wouldn’t even be smart enough to graduate with a sociology degree (this is not to disparage sociology majors, this is an inside joke.  Some of you will understand, but if you don’t please don’t be offended).

I don’t think any commercial gives any school any special advantage.  I am an advocate of this rule change for a very selfish reason.  THESE COMMERCIALS DRIVE ME INSANE!

Now, before I get a slew of responses labeling me as a Duke hater, let me say this.  Coach K is just the best example I could think of. 

Old Roy has been in a few doozies that have made my skin crawl also, and I am a huge UNC fan.  If I never saw another Coke or Rock Star video game commercial with “Old Roy” as long as I live I would be a better, and happier, man.

The reason this rule should exist is pure common sense.  After a team is eliminated from competition, the number of viewers who support that team who continue to watch the tournament dwindles significantly. 

For example, the number of Gonzaga supporters who watched the finals was much smaller than the number of Gonzaga fans who watched them play their final tournament game.

Companies target certain demographics when they put together an idea for a commercial.  If a channel does not have the target audience that a company desires it makes little sense to advertise on that channel.

If you follow this logic, forcing MSU and UNC fans to watch a commercial featuring a hated rival’s coach makes little sense from any perspective.

I use my crystal ball in an attempt to do good, and save humanity from unneeded strife.  But I am only one average citizen.

I need your help.

Together we can save the sports world from self aggrandizing, patronizing, and self promoting commercials by famous sports figures.  Use this article like a chain letter.  Tell all your friends about this worthy cause.

There is still time to get this rule change put into effect before a new generation of college basketball fans are forced to Tivo every tournament game in order to escape the horror of watching a famous coach drill a mind numbing commercial into their head through sheer force of repetition.

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