NBA Basketball One And Done Rule

What is the one and done rule in basketball?

The one and done rule in basketball prevents high school players from going straight into the NBA.

The rule states that a basketball player must be 19 years old or have completed at least one year of college to participate in the NBA draft. More specifically, a player must be one year out of their graduating class to be eligible for the NBA Draft.


The One and Done Rule

The NBA implemented the one and done rule in 2005. Prior to the one and done rule, players could participate in the NBA draft right out of high school. As young 18 year olds, the best prospects in high school looked to get drafted and fulfil their dreams of making it to the big show. However, the one and done rule was created to encourage NBA players to be more mature once they enter the league.

Before the one and done rule was implemented, players would go straight into the NBA from high school with little experience of playing at a higher-level of competition. By forcing players to play at least one year in college, it helped players mature and become a better team player.

List of One and Done Players

Here is a list of NBA basketball players that had to play in college due to the one and done rule:

  • Anthony Davis, University of Kentucky
  • Ben Simmons, LSU
  • Brandon Ingram, Duke University
  • Carmelo Anthony, Syracuse University
  • Chris Bosh, Georgia Tech
  • DeAndre Jordan, Texas A&M;
  • DeMarcus Cousins, University of Kentucky
  • Derrick Rose, University of Memphis
  • Greg Oden, Ohio State
  • Jabari Parker, Duke University
  • John Wall, University of Kentucky
  • Karl-Anthony Towns, University of Kentucky
  • Kevin Durant, University of Texas
  • Kevin Love, UCLA
  • Kyle Irving, Duke University
  • Michael Beasley, Kansas State
  • O.J. Mayo, USC
  • Shareef Abdur-Rahim, UC Berkeley
  • Zion Williams, Duke University

Less than a year after the rule was made, star high school players Kevin Durant and Greg Oden were forced to spend at least 1 year in the college setting before entering the NBA. Both played their respective freshman seasons at the University of Texas and Ohio State University. After both players performed excellently during their college seasons, both declared for the 2007 NBA draft. And with this, the era of one and done's began.

Impact on College Basketball

One of the unexpected outcomes from the one and done rule was the huge effect it had on the nature of college basketball. Before the rule existed, the best players would skip college and go straight to the pros. The one and done rule states that players must fulfil the requirement to go to college for 1 year to be draft eligible.

The best players that know they will be drafted go to a school for 1 year, boost their draft stock, and then declare for the NBA draft. This creates a culture where student athletes are only at a school for 1 year.

Most college basketball stars leave the NCAA to go pro after their freshman year. This is especially prevalent at schools like Duke and Kentucky because players know they will have a big spotlight on them all year which enhances their shot of being drafted. This makes it difficult for programs and coaches to create a long term plan because many of their best players leave after one year.

There are only 2 rounds in the NBA Draft, so it is important for college basketball athletes to show their ability in a short time to make sure they get drafted.