"Rants and Raves" is an open forum for coaches to discuss topics, ranging from issues to observations on the state of college basketball and beyond.
 
 
Naismith is an American Name
By Barry Hinson, Southwest Missouri State

When the subject of rule changes was brought up, it seemed like a natural for CI's expanded "Rants & Raves" feature, which Virginia Tech's Seth Greenberg initiated.

For the past two years I have been very much against the implementing of international rules into college basketball. I may be incorrect in my assumption, but I am pretty certain that Naismith is an American name, so why are we so insistent on putting a foreign spin on it?

It blows my mind that we are taking a game that we invented and changing it in favor of international appeal.

Don't get me wrong, I think it is a terrific that the world has embraced the game of basketball and the influx of international players is great, but we shouldn't be reinventing the game.

The two modifications this season are the widening of the lane and the moving back of the three-point line. There has been a lot of constructive discussion regarding both, over the past few years, but it wasn't coaches that wanted to see them implemented, according international guidelines.

In fact, the coaches -- almost to a man -- voted against introducing the international rules. A couple of mice may have squeaked, but the great majority did not want to see a trapezoid.

The idea was to clean up post play, which makes sense, but coaches didn't put the trapezoid on the drawing table. A great many of us believed the current NBA lane would make more sense, but the rules committee decided to look past our strong recommendation and introduce the foreign version of the lane.

Why did we vote?

I don't believe it was anyone's intention to create a series of lines and boundaries on the court, but now some playing surfaces look like a maze of lines. We are taking on the look of a YMCA court, with kickball, dodge ball and volley ball lines.

And included in that list is a new three-point line.

The advent of moving back the three-point arc was something that was needed. The three-point shot has become almost a mid-range jumper. It short, it was a very good idea.

Coaches are not always opposed to change, despite the fact that we are creatures of habit. However, it would only make sense for such changes to be made with our input being a deciding factor.

Voting against something -- as a group -- only to see it become a reality anyway, just doesn't make sense.

Dr. James Naismith is an American icon so let's try to stay in tune with American rules.