The College Basketball Scandal from a High School Coach’s Perspective [AUDIO]
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During a time of the year when fans have a laser like focus on college football, a major investigation by the FBI into corruption and fraud in college basketball surfaced to the spotlight earlier this week.
In recent years, the NBA’s “one-and-done” rule and the presence of organizations like AAU have fundamentally changed the landscape of college basketball.
In addition to college basketball programs, high school programs have also experienced the effects in the changing culture of college basketball.
During Thursday’s edition of The Gary Harris Show, veteran Hillcrest High School boys basketball coach Scott Suttles offered his perspective of the troubles facing college basketball.
Suttles spoke on a variety of angles including the differences in how college football and college basketball coaches recruit America’s elite high school players.
“When Coach Saban wants to recruit a four or five star football prospect, he and his assistants talk to the kid’s high school coach, but if I’m ever fortunate enough to ever coach a four or five star basketball player and college recruiters talking to his AAU coach.” Suttles said.
The Hillcrest boys basketball coach further detailed how AAU games and tournaments have superseded high school games in terms of providing exposure for blue chip athletes.
“A top 50 player from every state in America will tell you now that his AAU games and tournaments are much more important and significant than his high school games whether it’s Peach Jam. They have them in (Las) Vegas now. I mean they’re all over. That’s just a fact, and it didn’t use to be that way but that’s how they get exposure now.” Suttles said.
Suttles also weighed the general positive and negatives influences of AAU basketball on high school basketball programs.
“I wouldn’t say AAU coaches are bad for high school sports. I think many are good in bringing positive aspects to the programs they coach.” Suttles said. “However, there are some negative things as well, especially whether it’s directly or indirectly leading players to transfer or go to a different school than they should.”
Later in his conversation with Gary Harris, the veteran high school basketball coach spoke about the lack of recruiting presence of college coaches at high school games, the events surrounding former Alabama director of basketball operations Kobe Baker and the changes in the high school basketball culture over his coaching tenure.
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