Duke's Mike Krzyzewski: NCAA 'Not Prepared' for Change to 1-and-Done Rule

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorMarch 30, 2019

WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 29: Head coach Mike Krzyzewski of the Duke Blue Devils addresses the media following their game against the Virginia Tech Hokies during the 2019 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament East Regional Semifinals at Capital One Arena on March 29, 2019 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
Lance King/Getty Images

Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today reported on Feb. 21 that the NBA has made a proposal to the National Basketball Players Association to lower a prospect's draft-eligibility age to 18 years old by the 2022 draft.

On Saturday, Duke men's basketball head coach Mike Krzyzewski gave his take regarding the NCAA's readiness for such a change, per David M. Hale of ESPN.com:

"The NBA will be well prepared. The NCAA is not prepared right now. They need to be in concert with the NBA in developing a plan that is specific for men's college basketball. And that should include what an athlete gets, how he's been taken care of, whether or not there's a reentry if something -- really, it's deep. And if we only look at it shallow, then we're doing a disservice to the kids."

Michael McMann of Sports Illustrated explained the current parameters of the "one-and-done" rule, which the NBA began in 2006:

"In order for an American player to be draft eligible, he must be at least 19 years old and at least one NBA season must have elapsed since when he graduated from high school or, if he didn't graduate, when he would have graduated," McMann wrote on March 3.

As Hale pointed out, Duke has fared well in the one-and-done era. The Blue Devils most notably this season were the NCAA tournament's No. 1 overall seed. Zion Williamson, RJ Barrett and Cam Reddish could all be top-five picks in this summer's NBA draft after spending just one season in Durham, North Carolina.

That hasn't gone unnoticed by his coaching rivals, such as Michigan State's Tom Izzo:

John Fanta @John_Fanta

“He’s dipped more into the one-and-done style, and like a chameleon, he’s maintained his success since the 80’s.” - Tom Izzo on Mike Krzyzewski

The proposed one-and-done change could end up being one of a few seismic NCAA fixes, including compensating student-athletes. That notion was brought up again after Williamson suffered a late-season knee sprain and missed five full games and most of a sixth.

Per Hale:

"North Carolina congressman Mark Walker introduced legislation that would allow for college athletes to profit off their names and likenesses, and last week, Connecticut senator Chris Murphy cited Williamson's situation in releasing a report deriding the current amateurism model and calling for compensation to players, suggesting it was an 'issue of civil rights.'"

In addition, California state senator Nancy Skinner proposed a bill (the "Fair Pay to Play Act") allowing student-athletes from the state's 24 public colleges and universities to profit "as a result of the student's name, image, or likeness," per Bryan Anderson of the Sacramento Bee.

Ex-UCLA and current Arizona Cardinals quarterback Josh Rosen also arrived at an idea whereby players could profit off their name during college but only access such funds provided they graduate.

In the midst of potential sweeping changes across college athletics, Krzyzewski is suggesting that all parties involved sit down together and create a unified plan of action:

"I'd love for a group to talk to those gentlemen who are in federal government. That's not being done. So the right fielder's saying something to left fielder. Like, let's get into the clubhouse and do it as a team. The kids deserve it.

"And in this time the definition of amateurism -- it's outdated. We need a new model. And with all these things that are changing, it cries out for coordination of creating this new model. If we don't do it, our game's going to suffer."

At this point, it seems like a matter of "how and when" and not "if" the outdated amateurism model Krzyzewski referenced changes.