Monday, April 23, 2007

Na Na Na Na, Hey Hey Hey.... Goodbye???

Well, the first "credible" report of either of our freshman testing the draft - this report that Thaddeus Young's father has indicated he will enter his name into the draft, will NOT hire an agent. The report says that information back from the league indicates he will be a first round choice, although not a "lottery pick". His father would like to see him move up into the lottery, as this can make a huge difference in terms of future money.

Disappointing? Yes................. the right thing to do? Probably. If Thaddeus is projected as a first round guy, he probably owes it to himself to test the waters, unless he just has a passion for school and getting back together for another run at the NCAA's (oh wait, I forgot - we never get guys who want to do that, but somehow Florida gets 3 or 4 of them).

Anyhow, I can't fault him for doing it, and I honestly wouldn't fault Javaris either if he does the same. However, I will say this - if he and JC leave, they will have severely shortchanged any real legacy they leave behind. While their names will forever be associated with Tech, they will give up their chance to leave a serious collegiate legacy. If they're great pro's, they could have that "Chris Bosh" type legacy, which is still great, but you can't say you led your team to anything significant. Maybe that's not important to them. My gut tells me it means more to JC in terms of a Tech legacy, but he seems to have the more personal need for the money. But I won't put him in the list of the truly elite PG's to play at GT if he leaves after one season: Here's my ranking of GT Point Guards in terms of legacy. Now, in my opinion, Kenny was the best collegiate PG to play at Tech and one of the best all-time, but in terms of legacy, he's not first since staying 2 seasons limited his impact:

1. Mark Price - 'nuff said - 4 year guy, part of the resurrection of Tech hoops, NBA all-star

2. Kenny Anderson - best PG to ever play at GT, led us to our first Final Four, but only stayed 2 seasons.

3. Travis Best - One of my personal favorites - a leader, tough as nails, icewater in the veins during crunch time, had a very solid NBA player.

4. Jarrett Jack - tough, gritty, a leader, took and made the big shots, led us to our first NC game.

5. Craig Neal - great passer, I was there the night he set the ACC single game assist record, one magical season. Noodles endeared himself to Tech fans.

6. Drew Barry - magical passer, the 2nd PG on the floor. Part a family legacy.

7. Stephon Marbury - fantastic offensive player, led Tech to a conference title, but cut his legacy short by leaving after one season.

8. Tony Akins - sort of a mini-Travis Best, another gritty left-hander. Maximized everything he had on the court. A great Tech man.

8. Javaris Crittenton - special player who led his team to a 1st round ACC tourney exit, the NCAA tourney and a 1st round exit there as well. Wonderful young man. Loads of potential. Love the passion. Love the enthusiam. Love that he wears his heart on his sleeve. Has greater potential than most on this list.
For me the bottom-line with Javaris is this - a true lasting legacy was not created last season as a historic Tech PG. If he leaves and has a fantastic NBA career, then his legacy will be in the NBA and Tech will be "associated" with his name (again, in a Chris Bosh sort of way). However, that's not a collegiate legacy.

Here are Javaris's own words:

"I want to be mentioned in the same breath as those guys when it's all said and
done. Those are all great point guards: Stephon (Marbury), Travis (Best), Mark
Price, Kenny Anderson, all those guys. I want my name right along those guys,
and I want some young kid being compared to me. I want to leave a legacy, both
as an individual and as a team."

Here's the thing - every one of those guys led Tech to some type of title, some championship, some new milestone. They left their impact with the success they helped create on the floor.
Either way, Javaris, just do what's best for you and your family. Us fans selfishly want what's best for Tech, so we'll write all kinds of reasons why you should stay................... but that's for you to decide.

........but how important is your legacy as one of the great Georgia Tech Point Guards? Personally, I still think there's work to be done, but what do I know? I'm just one of those selfish fans too you know.

Now, back to Thaddeus Young. I wish him the best no matter what happens. Of course I want him back on this team next season, because he's only scratched the surface on his talent - which is the very reason he's probably never going to wear a Tech uniform again................ They REAL important date for Tech fans is June 16, the last day for players to remove their names from the draft.