The NFL draft restricting who can enter is self-serving, hypocritical and borderline socialistic, writes ESPN's Tim Keown.
You have to give the NFL credit: It has the absolute best business deal. It's so good, in fact, that even the most devious monopolist would have a hard time finding an industry that compares. The NFL's monopoly includes an antitrust exemption, which has gone a long way toward creating $9 billion in annual revenue, and the most convenient and cost-effective farm system in sports: college football.
The best part about that farm system? It doesn't cost the NFL anything.
But wait, there's more: The NFL gets to collude with the NCAA on player eligibility, which means the two entities can force players to spend three years in college no matter how detrimental it might be to the professional and personal well-being of those players.
The system is self-serving, hypocritical and borderline socialistic. College programs use it to create continuity and remain relevant. The NFL uses it to ensure the prepackaging of stars at the amateur level and provide a steady flow of recognizable talent to a sport with an attrition rate that's just slightly better than what you'd find at your local drive-thru window. In other words, it's backslaps all around for everyone but the guys doing the labor.
For the rest of Keown's article, click here.