The St. Louis Swarm basketball team heads into the playoffs after its inaugural season in a very unique league. Players in the International Basketball League are employed by the league, not individual teams, so every team relies on the success of other teams. Swarm coach and general manager Bernie Bickerstaff says the league is committed to helping players prepare for life after basketball. The IBL offers each player ten thousand dollars in tuition money for every year in the league. The IBL requires players to commit to the league for a full year, and allows teams to take local players to increase fan interest. The Swarm, led by former Mizzou standout Doug Smith, had the league’s best record this year, and open the playoffs tomorrow in Las Vegas. The Swarm’s Danny Johnson was named the IBL rookie of the year yesterday.
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