Maybe it's not right that the NCAA doesn't pay its players.
Regardless of your stance on this issue, the players at top-tier Division I schools are getting a free education—and that’s not a bad deal. And when you’re playing for an organization (the NCAA) that touts its ability to launch careers in areas other than sports, sometimes it might not be a bad idea to take your school up on that whole education thing. Especially if you’re not going to be the next Kevin Durant, Steph Curry, or heck, even the next Matt Barnes.
This is especially true if you’re in a DI program at a top-tier academic school, and even more true if you’re someone who would otherwise have no business being in a top-tier school. That’s a pretty good opportunity.
Not every player is the next Markelle Fultz or even John Collins, a big man from Wake Forest who will be a late first-round pick.
Now, some of the players listed on here have not hired an agent, which means that they are eligible to return to college if they are not drafted. But there’s no turning back for the guys who have hired agents. We certainly hope it works out for them, and everyone has their own reasons for leaving school early, whether because it's just not for them or they need to support their family. We respect that. But we're a little skeptical that it's truly the right decision for everyone.
With that said, here are eight guys in this year’s draft we'd rather see balling in college than in the Gatorade League or overseas next season, in no particular order: