In a truly shameless display an organization known as the “National Collegiate Athletic Association” has cast its greedy eyes on an MMA favorite and decided “I’ll have that.” Taking the Grand Prix format famously invented for the UFC’s inaugural event and oft imitated throughout other major organizations like PRIDE, Bellator and the Professional Fighters League, the NCAA has organized two absolutely massive Grand Prix events for both men’s and women’s collegiate basketball teams to run over the next three weeks. It’s unclear whether the audacious plan will pay off, and the fields of 68 teams contesting 67 matches will have any seasoned MMA fans rubbing their hands with anticipatory glee at the chaos of replacements and reintroductions that will be required to see the events through to their conclusions, but the apparent partnership with major combat sports broadcasting networks ESPN, CBS and TBS seems like a particular slap in the face for combat sports.
Plagiarism Alert! Amateur Basketball League Rips Off Grand Prix Format
They’ve even amplified MMA’s athlete compensation and autonomy policy.