Rules committee advocates ban on treacherous logo stickers

When Michigan State's Branden Dawson slipped on the Quicken Loans sticker covering the jump ball circle and tweaked a knee in last year's Carrier Classic, both Tom Izzo and Roy Williams used the moment to rail against the treacherous decals.

Said Williams: "If we want to give somebody some publicity, put it on there on TV only and don't put the kids in danger of slipping and sliding."

Said Izzo: "I'll wear logos to support the people who sponsor us. They can paint me. But we have to get rid of the logos for the safety of the players."

It took longer than it should have, but it appears common sense may finally prevail. The men's and women's basketball rules committees announced Monday they've recommended requiring courts be of a consistent surface, meaning temporary decals would be outlawed by next season if the Playing Rules Oversight Panel approves the rule change next month.

"The safety of our student-athletes has to come before anything else," said St. Peter's coach John Dunne, the chair of the men's basketball rules committee. "We're seeing players slip on the non-consistent parts of the floor too many times."

"Sometimes it takes a high-profile event to make a rules change. But we don't want to sit back and wait for injuries to happen and then pass the rule."

Credit the rules committee for being proactive because for a while it seemed it would take a torn ACL or a severely sprained ankle to force a rule change. Coaches have complained about the decals for years after watching players lose their footing trying to make a cut on a surface with minimal traction.

The best part is there should be an easy solution that keeps both safety-conscious coaches and publicity-hungry advertisers happy.

TV networks now have the technology to superimpose images on a court that aren't actually visible in the arena. Why not do that with the logo of a sponsor for a preseason tournament? It achieves the same purpose without putting players at risk.

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