In Reply to: What You Seem To Not Want To Acknowledge posted by LCTiger on July 09, 2018 at 14:30:07
"It is clear that UCLA Men's Basketball does not currently have such a culture, nor do many of its participants demonstrate a strong appreciation of the benefits of staying in it, as demonstrated by the fact that most players who perceive any substantial NBA opportunity seem to leave at the earliest opportunity."
UCLA has lost 1 player during Alford's tenure to the NBA draft who was not a 1st rounder, and that was Ike Anigbogu, who was projected in the first round until after the 'return to school' date had passed and a physical surfaced knee issues that dropped him to the 2nd round. UCLA has had 8 early entrants to the NBA draft under Alford, and 7 have gone in the 1st round.
I think it's a stretch to argue that there's some mystical quality that gets guys to stay at UM over UCLA. Wagner didn't return to Michigan because of a deep abiding love for Ann Arbor. He returned because he didn't think he'd go in the first round:
Wagner said at times in the process being a first-round pick was important to his decision.
"It was just too risky this year," he told [mgoblue.com]. "The draft is very deep and the top 20 picks are almost set. You could only play yourself up to a certain stock."
Though he was projected by one website as the No. 30 overall pick, many mock drafts didn't even have him projected to be picked in the two rounds.
"I could've gone early second round or I could've gone between 20 and 30 (overall)," he said. "But I wasn't in the top 20 for sure. So, it was very, very risky."
Teams like UM, Villanova, and Virginia recruit for players that don't fit an NBA early entrant profile. The 'culture' factor is a post hoc justification that has a much simpler answer - guys who are good enough to be 1st round picks, go. Beilein has had 9 early entrants to the draft, of which 2 went in the 2nd round, and 1 senior drafted. Alford has had 8 early entrants, of which 1 went in the 2nd round, and had 2 seniors drafted. Please explain to me what part of that suggests Alford's program is losing a bunch of guys that Michigan would keep?
Alford's problem has not been with the players he loses to the NBA, or the rate at which he has lost them - it's not substantially different than Beilein under Michigan the last 7-8 years. HIs problem has been the players he has kept *are not good enough* on their own merits, or that he cannot get them to perform well enough. That is still a strike against him, undoubtedly - but it's not defined as some deep cultural secret Beilein has discovered that has allowed him to keep a bunch of first rounders in college extra years - because he hasn't.
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