July 24, 2009

Big Apple Stupidity

Filed under: Mike Flynn — mikeflynn @ 12:12 am

I haven’t posted for a while, been busy with events in Vegas, Chicago and now DC.  I know I’ve sent some very important emails of stories in the media, about the media and advertising and its’ affects on sports in the past week to a select group of people.  I’ve also noted some changes coming in girls summer travel basketball for 2010.  I haven’t posted my comments on a number of items as it takes time to write and I am not wasting what I have now during the NCAA cycle on things that I can get to in August, even the one I wanted to post in June. 

Normally I don’t bother with the stupid chatter of web sites. I do not go to them or read them unless it’s something funny. Mos of the time what is written gets forwarded to me. I don’t need to go there and lower my intellect.  This time I did get annoyed (maybe that was the magical desired reaction they wanted) about the SlamJam website in NYC as it normally contains racist, negative and horrible posts that never gets monitored.  Sometimes you have to laugh at the utter stupid posts from the morons who creep onto the site under various names.  They feel that a free-for-all spot for sick and demented people who post is the norm.  We all know the methods to track and to unveil these kinds of people who post on public sites.  A phone call tonight from HoopsKing about the Big Apple-Exodus sage that now has a life, a sad one of its one and some of the posts up there – again utterly stupid – this time about this event.

What got me to post was the lack of information and the lack of insight that most of the poeple who post there don’t have.  This time the rumor mill surrounding one of my prior posts here about the event and the things that were in the works from other spots.  I posted the information that I got an email from a college coach with the actual email from the email of Robert Paschall, aka Apache, who was the person who’s event wasn’t sanctioned.  Why? Who knows but the NCAA has made themselves the abitor of all youth basketball regardless that it does not fall within their constitution.  This is not college athletics but high school.  Some say it was paperwork, some said it was insurance – regardless they pulled the sanction.  I heard about this possibility during the first part of July down in Hampton, VA.  I didn’t reallly think about it as it was still far away in terms of events.  I had an event down in South Carolina to run and wasn’t involved.  I last spoke to Apache in NYC right before the start of USJN Hershey (June 24th) and talked to him about this Exodus summer schedule. That was my last communication with him in person until I saw him today. I got a few vague text messages right before July 1 but that was it until I got an email and text from his assistant Lauren Best.

During this time I was traveling to events in Hampton, VA; Las Vegas, NV and Chicago, IL.  I was asked in Chicago if Exodus was coming to DC but didn’t know until Lauren’s email to me four days before our event. During that NCAA designated break of July 16-21 I made sure that the event in South Carolina – Blue Star Invitational – was cancelled due to the late registarations from teams. I spent more time on Las Vegas this year and my travel team (Belles-Flynn) than the SC event. I felt it was in everyones best interests to cancel and focus on the end of the summer. At this point I needed a place for my team to play. I wanted to send them to NYC as the expense of SC wasn’t worth going down South for my players.  When I asked about the Big Apple to a college coach they told me there were problems and sent me the email from a college coach who attached Apache’s email to the coaches telling them about the shift of the Big Apple to an event at Hofstra.

The email was a copy that was sent to the WBCA asking for a “clarification.”  I knew once the email was “passed onto” the NCAA that the Big Apple event was in trouble and so was the next event that they were trying to work with.  I posted this fact when I heard about it trying to warn people without going deep into it.  When I got down here for the event I met and talked to most of the other coaches who are working with Exodus teams and they said that people in NYC are telling Apache that I was the culprit and was trying to cloud his mind.  I was not happy when I heard this is it made absolutely no sense as they were coming to DC – AND I was planning on sending my team to the Big Apples as I no longer had the SC event.  I was NOT running any event during that time and needed a place for my team as well.  When this hit my ears and the blame was being applied to me – that made no sense except for those who actually pushed that forward with their behind the scenes calls.  I could sit here and start naming names but look at the facts.  There is not only one event running in the Metro NYC area – hmmm, who’s doing that event and who’s the “known” person doing the “evals.”  Both are not fans of Mr. Paschall.  They are the only game in town now.  I am doing a last-two days event in South Jersey which wasn’t competing against anyone.

The saddness of all of this is that the Big Apple event was a vehicle for Exodus to help support their players and their travel program.  Kevin Lynch, Winston Kelly and I have talked about the work Mr. Paschall and Ms. Best do to help as many kids in NYC as possible, a lot of them kids who wouldn’t make it in some of the other programs in NYC and don’t have the support (family and/or financial) that would have them playing on other teams. Over the years the Belles have done what they can to help player who have needs.  You can’t have too many of those players as the drain in great and the attention to these situation is tremendous.  It’s no secret that Mr. Paschall doesn’t trust most people as the negative vibes of a successful, connected black man in girls and women’s basketball with great players doens’t always make college coaches and travel coaches happy.  A lot of this comes from helping kids and having their trust. Sure, there are those who would bring the negative with the positive but all I can say is that he’s doing it and a lot of others aren’t.

The NCAA action has been a financial blow to the Exodus program and it’s just another road bump, the same kinds a few of his kids face too as they go about playing basketball and making it a vehicle to change their lives. What does that mean to a college coach recruiting or not recuiting his players?  Nothing.  But, it can mean something to see Exodus fail when a college coach has the ability to go to the WBCA and ask that question. No Exodus in the way for whom?  The event in NJ? The other travel coaches in NYC?  The other college coaches who end up not liking you when they don’t get your star player – or even when that player leaves?  Who knows.  But, I’ve been in this game longer than most of the poeple who read this blog and it’s just damm sad that the NCAA has affected the lives of so many and a critical action becomes a stupid post on an even more moronic website like SlamJam.

As I drove back to the Key Bridge Marriott tonight, getting ready for tomorrow’s playoffs at the USJN DC 17u Championships, I thought like a laywer and said “Who benefits?”  When you look for an action, you look for the reaction.  A lot of people are now “hurt” but this action of the NCAA and the action of those who Mr. Paschall may have angered to the point to complain. I know that I’ve been on both sides of that – being hated and having an event uncertified.  I hope that some parent or someone sues the NCAA for these kinds of actions as they continue to abuse their power while setting up the next entity to crush basketball – the iHoops marketing machine.

What’s next?  Coaches will go elsewhere, players and travel teams will go elsewhere but in the end who got hurt and who benefited?  Continue to ask those quesitons. They are the same questions you ask in a court of law.  I hope it happens. I’ve gone agasint the big monster before.  Regardless of this situaiton, I know there are some major issues dealing with NCAA actions that need to be legally addressed and the time to bring it forward draws near.

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