Are You Ready?

This question really needs to be asked to young players who think they are one-and-done type of players.

“Are you ready?”

When this question is asked, players do not need to know if they are ready talent-wise, of course they are going to say yes. If the skill is there, if the game know how is there, if the player is brimming with potential, pro scouts are going to drool all over the player, gas their head up and blow their egos out of control with visions of their hoop dreams.

But this question is not asked in terms of maturity and character:

“Are you ready?”

The situation with Michael Beasley has turned into a dramatic one where things could go from bad to worse. He has checked himself into a rehab center and there have been reports of suicide attempts. It is really a shame because this was one gifted basketball player who shined at Kansas State, took them to heights that were not seen in years, it was because of him that K-State finally beat their in-state archrival Kansas at home for the first time ever. Beasley was able to do the two things he loved to do at Kansas State: play basketball and be a kid.

As the popularity of K-State and Beasley rose, so did the attention of the media. Then the analysis, the potential, and of course the common denominator: the money. With the money comes the power, the power comes the fame, and the life of a young NBA basketball player. The temptation and the fast track to riches is so appealing, the dark side never comes into play.

What about the dark side? The pressure to live up to the hype, the potential? It is a lot if a kid can not handle it. Beasley left some cryptic (well not really, cryptic, but concerning) messages on Twitter, such as: ‘Y do I feel like the whole world is against me!!!!!!!

Back on my FTW!!!!!

I can’t win for losin!!!!!!!!!!’ …

‘Feelin like it’s not worth livin!!!!!!!

I’m done’ … ‘not feelin this at all!!!!!'”

This could be one reason to implement the rule that a player should at least be in college for TWO years instead of one. The NFL not only has the three year rule for their incoming prospective rookies to choose to either stay or go to the draft because they are not physically ready, but mentally ready as well. We are now having HS children leave school to play professionally. What if it’s not the world they imagine, the world that it seems and what not? Michael Beasley should have waited at least one more year, simply because he was not done being a kid. When you leave school for the NBA, you become an adult. Some people are just ready and tailor-made for the big lights and big bucks, and the fame that goes with it. Others aren’t, they don’t live up to the pressure, and go down as a bust.

Michael Beasley did the right thing by getting control of his problems before he loses control completely, and he deserves all the credit in the world for doing that, because other athletes do not realize they are spinning out of control before they lose it all. Hopefully he will get through what he is experiencing and be ready with a clear mind and head. Maybe he realized that he grew up too quickly. So the question always has to be asked when making a life-altering decision that goes from kid to adult:

Are You Ready?

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