The Student Room Group

Is college in the US, the same as uni in UK?

When people say ‘college basketball’ in the US, is that the same as ‘university basketball’ in the UK?
Yes in terms of age, but the ethos is different. Top college basketball is basically a feeder system for the professional leagues. It's not like the UK where there's a university club, you show up, and the best few get picked for the team - the players are recruited for the college based pretty much solely on their basketball talent and their academic degree is very much secondary.
Original post by skylark2
Yes in terms of age, but the ethos is different. Top college basketball is basically a feeder system for the professional leagues. It's not like the UK where there's a university club, you show up, and the best few get picked for the team - the players are recruited for the college based pretty much solely on their basketball talent and their academic degree is very much secondary.

So in the US, is college basketball also at university?
A lot of college sports essentially fund the university, and not in a small way - we're talking about hundreds of millions of dollars. Take for example Clemson - a decent, but by no means prominent private school in South Carolina. No one in this country mentions it, nor knows anything about it - but they have an exceptional American Football team which essentially powers the entire college. Their stadium has a capacity larger than Old Trafford and they will easily fill it on game days.

Using the basketball example, a top basketball college will have a state of the art stadium and athletes who are looked after to the standard of any professional elite athlete in the world. Local people wil come in their hundreds and thousands to watch their local university team play - which is pretty much unheard of in this country. You may occasionally get a few locals watch a good university rugby team, a few hundred to watch the netball league, otherwise it's only for national events like the varsity boat race. In the US, a lot of the time the college team will be the "local" team for people to watch as they're not franchise based and in no danger of going away.
Original post by Trinculo
A lot of college sports essentially fund the university, and not in a small way - we're talking about hundreds of millions of dollars. Take for example Clemson - a decent, but by no means prominent private school in South Carolina. No one in this country mentions it, nor knows anything about it - but they have an exceptional American Football team which essentially powers the entire college. Their stadium has a capacity larger than Old Trafford and they will easily fill it on game days.

Using the basketball example, a top basketball college will have a state of the art stadium and athletes who are looked after to the standard of any professional elite athlete in the world. Local people wil come in their hundreds and thousands to watch their local university team play - which is pretty much unheard of in this country. You may occasionally get a few locals watch a good university rugby team, a few hundred to watch the netball league, otherwise it's only for national events like the varsity boat race. In the US, a lot of the time the college team will be the "local" team for people to watch as they're not franchise based and in no danger of going away.

So if I live in the uk and would like a shot at professional basketball, I would have to get accepted and move to a university in the US?
Original post by Anonymous
So if I live in the uk and would like a shot at professional basketball, I would have to get accepted and move to a university in the US?

Erm..not necessarily. US professional sports work primarily on the college draft, where players in their final year at college are drafted into the professional teams. Usually the worst team of last season gets the first pick - which is to try and even up the teams every year. This is how you get players like Baker Mayfield in the Cleveland Browns or LeBron going to the Cavaliers. However, anyone not picked can be taken as a "free agent" and essentially just given a job by a team - however the chance of you being scouted in a minor league is much lower and you will be trying to play professional standard whilst holding down a job and not having your every whim catered to by a university.

If you want to be drafted, you will have to go through the college system - however this is not as easy as it sounds. To get into a top college - those colleges are already scouting the high schools and offering high schoolers insane financial incentives to come to them. It will already been known who the best prospects at high school are and which colleges are likely to take them. If you are a foreigner, this doesn't exclude you, but if you are a 16-17 year old basketball player with any talent, chances are the colleges will already have heard of you. There are all sorts of companies that will try to get you to sign up with them and they'll help you get a college place - my sister used NCSA (not for basketball) - but often this is to help you get a scholarship at a good school, not to get you into the very top echelon. Bear in mind the universal difference between sports here and sports there. Just as one of our top rugby unis would trash most US rugby teams, a top high school basketball team is probably going to be on a level far beyond most basketballers in this country.
Original post by Trinculo
Erm..not necessarily. US professional sports work primarily on the college draft, where players in their final year at college are drafted into the professional teams. Usually the worst team of last season gets the first pick - which is to try and even up the teams every year. This is how you get players like Baker Mayfield in the Cleveland Browns or LeBron going to the Cavaliers. However, anyone not picked can be taken as a "free agent" and essentially just given a job by a team - however the chance of you being scouted in a minor league is much lower and you will be trying to play professional standard whilst holding down a job and not having your every whim catered to by a university.

If you want to be drafted, you will have to go through the college system - however this is not as easy as it sounds. To get into a top college - those colleges are already scouting the high schools and offering high schoolers insane financial incentives to come to them. It will already been known who the best prospects at high school are and which colleges are likely to take them. If you are a foreigner, this doesn't exclude you, but if you are a 16-17 year old basketball player with any talent, chances are the colleges will already have heard of you. There are all sorts of companies that will try to get you to sign up with them and they'll help you get a college place - my sister used NCSA (not for basketball) - but often this is to help you get a scholarship at a good school, not to get you into the very top echelon. Bear in mind the universal difference between sports here and sports there. Just as one of our top rugby unis would trash most US rugby teams, a top high school basketball team is probably going to be on a level far beyond most basketballers in this country.


Thanks

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