At only 10 years of age, the son of Cleveland Cavaliers’ LeBron James is turning more than just heads. LeBron James Jr. basketball prowess came to the attention of basketball fans and college basketball coaches and scouts after a video of him surfaced on the internet. From the video, it’s clear that the youngster is following into his father’s footsteps as he can shoot and pass a whole lot better than almost all kids his age. Now, a number of colleges have started expressing interest in offering him scholarship.
During an interview with a Detroit radio station, LeBron Sr. expressed his dissatisfaction with the whole college sponsorship. In his view, ‘recruiting 10 year old kids should be considered a violation.’ In addition to this, he believes that there need to be rules against schools that try to track young children. Though he claims to have got letters and scholarship offers from college coaches, he didn’t mention the names of the colleges behind this heinous courtship.
But it’s not out of pride that LeBron is turning down these offers. The point is, he believes that his son, whom he’s very overprotective of, shouldn’t be given any responsibilities at the time but should instead be left to enjoy his childhood. Aside from his basketball skills, which LeBron Sr. says are just like his – the awareness and ability to pass rather than set up guys, LeBron Jr. is also a great enthusiast of video games and homework.
So while thousands of enthusiastic young basketball players are dying to get college scholarships, LeBron is turning them down. Interestingly, this isn’t the first time that the superstar has had to turn down college scholarships. Roughly 12 years ago, he too was in the very same shoes as his son. At the time, while schooling at the St. Vincent-St. Mary High School in Akron, Ohio, he was offered several college scholarships all of which he turned down. As a matter of fact, he was the then country’s most sought after prep player. However, he never got a chance to accept any of them as he went straight to become pro.
The big question though is whether the alleged colleges are really interested in enrolling a 5th grader in their campuses. Though it’s highly probable that these colleges merely wanted to gauge the kid’s basketball interest, we can’t ignore the fact that there have been other young boys who have been offered similar scholarships and accepted. These include Ryan Boatright who committed to the University of Southern California when he was only 13, Michael Avery who accepted a college scholarship when he was in the 8th grade and Matt Carlino who received an offer while still in elementary school.
And although it’s clear that the NCCA (National Council for Curriculum and Assessment) by-laws restrict the recruitment of young players before they join high school, it’s evident that this trend is here to stay. This is mainly because NCCA laws have no impact on underground recruitment of young talented athletes and that, many families facing financial difficulties would warmly welcome these kinds of scholarships, no matter how young a kid is.