With the roster crunch becoming more and more difficult to deal with, Xavier's men's basketball program announced today at a press conference that they have made the unorthodox decision to reschedule their season as a series of 3-on-3 contests in an attempt to milk the most out of a thin group of players.
"With only eight scholarship players on the roster," said a member of the Xavier coaching staff, "it seemed like the only reasonable option. Other teams experiment with three-guard lineups as a change of pace; we have three guards on our entire team."
Indeed, Dee Davis, Brad Redford, and freshman Semaj Christon are the only guards who will suit up on scholarship for Xavier this year. "It would be hard to ask those three guys to split the 80 minutes in every game you need from the two guard positions," said someone close to the program. "Going to a 3-on-3 format gives the opportunity to run out a G-F-F lineup and really save some legs over the course of the season."
This is an obviously unique situation, so Xavier is in talks with the NCAA regarding exactly what rules system will be put in place. The only thing all sources have confirmed at this point is that a half-court format will be used. It is also close to being a done deal that all fouls - regardless of if they were in the act of shooting or on the floor - will result in the team that was fouled taking the ball out at the top of the key.
The two major sticking points both involve the change of possession rules. The Xavier camp is pushing hard for alternating possession off of made baskets, but the NCAA has authorized a committee to study the viability of a "make it, take it" based solution to that situation. Airballs are the other bone of contention. Again, the Musketeers staff is contending that the ball should have to be returned to outside the three-point arc if the defense rebounds an airball, while some playground rules allow the defense to go back up with the ball if it did not contact the goal.
This is thought to be the first time in NCAA history that a Division 1 team has changed to a 3-on-3 format for its season. Of course, Lindsey Wilson College of the NAIA played its 1944 season as 3-on-3 due to obvious geopolitical reasons.
Xavier's season had previously been scheduled in the traditional 5-on-5 setup.
I've spent enough time online to know that people can read things that are obviously satirical in nature and still get all worked up about them. It should be clear that this article was written for a laugh and is not based in reality, but if it isn't, I hope this note has cleared that up for you.