10 Reasons College Basketball Is Better Than the NBA

Justin Welton@JustinWeltonAnalyst IIMarch 30, 2011

10 Reasons College Basketball Is Better Than the NBA

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    Kemba Walker
    Kemba WalkerHarry How/Getty Images

    There are 10 reasons why College Basketball is better than the NBA.

    There is no question that the NBA has some of the greatest players in the world. We all know what the NBA is about, and that is the players. Coaches aren't needed as much in the NBA.

    Wake me up in the fourth quarter when the "real basketball" comes to life. Most NBA games are close until the fourth quarter, and I blame the effort level. How many times do you see one team up by 20 in the third, but they allow the other team to storm back to tie the game. I understand that this happens occasionally in basketball, but in college basketball it is less likely to occur.

    When Blake Griffin was going 100 percent for 48 minutes, I heard analysts say "slow down." Why on earth should a guy like this slow down? He is playing exactly like he played in college, and the players and coaches didn't like that whatsoever.

    Granted, 82 games is a lot of basketball throughout the course of the season. That still isn't a good enough answer to not play 100 percent all of the time. Kemba Walker and his Huskies just played five games in five days a couple of weeks ago. They are not using that as an excuse in the NCAA Tournament and are still playing.

    I am a basketball purist, so I love any form of basketball. I especially appreciate 100 percent efforts. This is why I also love high school basketball. Most of those kids won't ever play in college, but they give 100 percent efforts, and that is something you can appreciate.

    The only thing that the NBA has is star power; that is why it is so popular.

    These are the 10 reasons why college basketball blows the NBA out of the water.

No 10: More Teams Can Win It All

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    SAN ANTONIO, TX - MARCH 25:  Jamie Skeen #21 of the Virginia Commonwealth Rams and the VCU fans celebrate after defeating the Florida State Seminoles during the southwest regional of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at the Alamodome on March 25,
    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    There are more teams with the opportunity of winning it all in college. The NBA is turning into the MLB. There are realistically five teams that have a chance of winning the NBA Title this season.

    As we have seen this year with VCU and Butler, there are a number of schools that can make a claim that they are the best this season in college.

    This makes every game more exciting and meaningful.

No 9: Every Game Means Something

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    Derick Williams
    Derick WilliamsKevork Djansezian/Getty Images

    The game in Cleveland last night was meaningful, but most NBA games aren't. They play 82 games where nothing really matters until the fourth quarter.

    In college, however, every game means something to the players who aren't getting paid. Whether it is building your resume, proving you belong or crowd support, every game is meaningful to at least one team. Most college players are giving it their all from the opening tip-off.

No 8: Tradition

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    ANAHEIM, CA - MARCH 24:  Head coach Mike Krzyzewski of the Duke Blue Devils looks on from the sidelines during the west regional semifinal of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at the Honda Center on March 24, 2011 in Anaheim, California.  (Photo b
    Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

    Other than a few NBA teams, tradition is a lost art. For example, the Celtics and Lakers have won the majority of the NBA Titles.

    There are plenty of teams that carry tradition in college, whether it is UCLA, Kentucky, Duke, North Carolina, Connecticut and so on.

    When you put on these uniforms, you understand it is the name on the front of the jersey—not the back—that is important.

No 7: Team Defense

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    BUFFALO, NY - MARCH 21:  Wes Johnson #4 and Rick Jackson #00 of the Syracuse Orange defend against Elias Harris #20 of the Gonzaga Bulldogs during the second round of the 2010 NCAA men's basketball tournament at HSBC Arena at HSBC Arena on March 21, 2010
    Rick Stewart/Getty Images

    Too many times in the NBA, we see one-on-one basketball. The defense is 99 percent man-to-man, and as a basketball purist, I hate that.

    There is no strategy involved in the NBA. You would think that with only eight seconds to get it across half court, a coach would implement a full-court press, but no. At least they could make the other team use half of the shot clock before getting into their offense.

    College is different. It uses everything from 1-3-1 to full-court presses, which is how the game should be. Many teams play different ways, except in the NBA.

No 6: Rules

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    CLEVELAND - MARCH 29:  LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat drives to the basket during the game against the Cleveland Cavaliers on March 29, 2011 at Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downlo
    Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

    The have traveling in their rulebook, but really? It is laughable. I have seen a guy take five steps and not be called.

    Defensive three seconds eliminates zones by 99.9 percent.

    College and high school go together. The rules are pretty much the same except for high school not having a shot clock (which they need to implement).

No 5: "Real Basketball"

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    LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 20:  Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots a jumper over Wesley Matthews #2 of the Portland Trail Blazers at the Staples Center on March 20, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and
    Harry How/Getty Images

    It isn't "real basketball" whatsoever. While I still love the NBA, I wish it would be more like college. Give me the normal rules and strategies, and I would be happy.

    Instead, dump it down to Kobe in the post and let him work.

No 4: Offense Is One or Two Passes

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    MIAMI, FL - MARCH 16:  LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat guards Kevin Durant #35 of the Oklahoma City Thunder during a game at American Airlines Arena on March 16, 2011 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downl
    Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

    I watched a game recently between the Nuggets and Spurs, and the Nuggets had two passes in five of six possessions. Horrible basketball to watch.

    This goes back to not being a strategic game like it should be. The NBA allows the athletes to make plays that I am sure is great for fans to watch.

    Some teams—like the Suns with Steve Nash and the Hornets with Chris Paul—will pass more frequently. However, most offenses in the league resemble a one or two pass system.

    The Lakers are a much better team when Kobe Bryant is sharing the rock. Does this say something?

    The best teams in the league share the ball and have multiple guys who can score.

    I think I just love the strategic side of the game. I love basketball, I apologize.

No 3: Players/Passion

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    MIAMI, FL - MARCH 19:  Guard Dwyane Wade #3 of the Miami Heat is fouled by guard J.R. Smith (R) of the Denver Nuggets at American Airlines Arena on March 19, 2011 in Miami, Florida. The Heat defeated the Nuggets 103-98. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknow
    Marc Serota/Getty Images

    We see the most passion from the players in the fourth quarter. 

    College kids might rely on the crowd more to get them going.

    Some players show more emotion than others in any sport. In the NBA, we don't see it enough during the regular season.

No 2: Reminds You of YMCA/Recreation League Basketball

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    PHOENIX, AZ - JANUARY 28:  Paul Pierce #34 of the Boston Celtics handles the ball during the NBA game against the Phoenix Suns at US Airways Center on January 28, 2011 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Suns defeated the Celtics 88-71. NOTE TO USER: User expressly
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    With the constant one-on-one's, up-and-down action and not giving 100 percent all of the time, the NBA reminds me of a YMCA league for the first three quarters.

    Once the fourth quarter comes around, you can tell the excitement, passion from fans and players and caring for the victory finally shows its face.

    College basketball blows the NBA out of the water in so many categories. This one isn't even close. These guys are giving 100 percent from the tip-off.

No 1: Fans/Passion

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    DURHAM, NC - FEBRUARY 09:  Cameron Crazies heckle the North Carolina Tar Heels during their game at Cameron Indoor Stadium on February 9, 2011 in Durham, North Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
    Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

    The fans at NBA games need music during the game to be alive. There are some buildings that are different, but most make the game boring. In 95 percent of arenas, there isn't really a home floor advantage until the fourth quarter.

    College has some of the best fan/student sections in the world. They bring posters, use creative chants and make as much noise as possible.

    This is the number one reason why college basketball is head and shoulders above the NBA.

College Basketball Is Greater Than NBA

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    NEWARK, NJ - MARCH 27:  DeAndre Liggins #34 of the Kentucky Wildcats hugs teammates Brandon Knight #12 and Terrence Jones #3 during their game against the North Carolina Tar Heels in the east regional final of the 2011 NCAA men's basketball tournament at
    Chris Trotman/Getty Images

    All products and subjects should have a little leeway here or there, but the concept is true throughout this whole piece.

    For basketball purists, college basketball is a much greater product than the NBA.