As has become custom, President Obama kicked off the World Series of Brackets from inside the White House, filling out his NCAA tournament gambling sheet on national television.
The Big Dance, amateurism's greatest scam, remains relevant primarily because of America's addiction to wagering. The play on the court is sloppy and uneven. Most Americans can't identify the players. We're light years removed from when Larry Bird and Magic Johnson, Patrick Ewing and Hakeem Olajuwon and the Fab Five and North Carolina staged unforgettable postseason basketball clashes.
The Bracket -- i.e. gambling -- is college basketball's biggest star. Joe Lunardi, ESPN's year-round "bracketologist," is more well-known nationally than any player.
The context is provided to illustrate the absurdity of the NCAA rule that cost Kansas State fifth-year senior Jamar Samuels his final collegiate game. Twenty-four hours before the Wildcats departed on their NCAA tournament road trip, Samuels accepted $200 in po...