Way back in 1950, the major college basketball in New York City was dealt a debilitating blow when NYU, City College of New York, and LIU, were knocked out of the ranks of the Division I elite because of players taking money from mobsters to shave points. CCNY was banned from playing at Madison Square Garden due to the scandal.
In 1993, UNLV was hit with sanctions under the legendary coach Jerry Tark the Shark Tarkanian due to his dealings with former NYC phenom Lloyd Sweet Pea Daniels. Though the NCAA and big-time college basketball has continually passed the blame of collusion and maleficence onto those who get the small-time dollars, it is always the kids that get used and abused.
LaVar Ball, the mercurial father of Los Angeles Lakers rookie point guard Lonzo Ball, young phenom-turned-professional baller LaMelo Ball, and middle-brother LiAngelo, a shooter who should be a freshman at UCLA if not for his shoplifting shenanigans in China, has been the cause of some controversy over the last few years.
From the very beginning, LaVar was clear that he was willing to monetize his sons via their ability to play basketball. Thus far, his Big Baller Brand has expanded beyond what snickering naysayers could have possibly conceived two years ago. And, despite, the alien lifeform release on his jump shot, Lonzo is on track to be an All-Star in a few years.
LaMelo & LiAngelo Ball kicked off the BBB tournament scoring 31 & 32 points each as Vytautas faced off against VEF. ——————————— Follow Us On Social!
The “hate” directed at LaVar became all about the price, design and the durability of Lonzo’s signature shoe, but it was always clear to me it was about the man, a man who dared to scoff at their emblazoned golden calf.
Major college and professional basketball coaches and personalities have expressed a volcanic level of disdain for LaVar, with USA Today writer Nancy Armor even going to far as saying he was the Worst Sports Parent in History. It was an insult of massive proportions, but also indicative of the sensibilities of the writer and, dare I say, of society at large.
However, since then, all of those Dick Vitale’s and Rick Carlisle’s of the world, individuals who have enriched themselves on the NCAA and the NBA, are watching in relative silence as the NCAAs predatory nature is revealed yet again. Because of the fact that Division I basketball and football student-athletes cant get a job or any financial assistance, and the NCAA refuses to pay them for their work, many struggle just to stay in school
In addition to pulling LiAngelo and LaMelo out of college and high school, respectively, Ball has been extremely outspoken about the Los Angeles Lakers usage of Lonzo, and head coach Luke Waltons ability to coach a talented but green-horned squad.
LiAngelo Ball lead all scorers with 26 points in the 2nd game of the BBB tournament. Don’t forget to tune in tomorrow 2/27, @ 2:00pm EST! We’re broadcasting the last Ball bros game of the BBB International Tournament. Click here for reminders: https://www.facebook.com/BallislifeTV/videos/2206266766053839/ ——————————— Follow Us On Social!
He might as well be in jail, LaVar told the Los Angeles Times about his decision to take LiAngelo out of school following UCLAs suspension. Im not going to let UCLA take the fire out of my boy by not letting him play for two months. Were going to do some other options.
Check out what your boy Dickie V, who has gone on three separate anti-Ball rants since last September, had to say about LaVar.
I told Steve Alford today I don’t know if he realizes it but Santa Claus came early for the @UCLAmbb team with LaVar Ball having his son LiAngelo packing his bags / can u just imagine LaVar’s antics when his son would not get PT ?
I told Steve Alford today I dont know if he realizes it but Santa Claus came early for the @UCLAmbb team with LaVar Ball having his son LiAngelo packing his bags / can u just imagine LaVars antics when his son would not get PT ? LiAngelo needed UCLA more than they needed him !
Wait, that last part? The part where Dick Vitale says the individual, LiAngelo, needs the institution, UCLA, more than the institution needs the individual, but is not every institution but a conglomerate of people, rules and ideas? Contrary to what Vitale believes, there are always other options, other rules and other institutions to build.
Both the younger Ball brothers are currently doing very well in Lithuania, with LaVar himself having taken up full-time coaching duties for their Vytautas squad during the Big Baller Challenge. Plus, his Big Baller Brand is now an official sponsor of the Lithuanian Basketball League through the end of the season, AND he announced plans to launch a BBB sponsored professional basketball league back in December.
Not only has Ball walked the walk but is currently in the midst of talking the talk.
Oh, how those who ally themselves with leviathans and usurpers of talent scream and contort at the idea of a man using the talents of his children to enrich himself. Meanwhile, it seems like a toxic stream of covert collusion that has always existed in big time college sports.
The FBI investigation is naming names; Alabama, Clemson, Creighton, Duke, Iowa State, Kansas, Texas, Villanova, North Carolina, Maryland and many others have been named in an ongoing mushroom cloud of an investigation thats currently dumping radioactive fallout all over the idea of amateur collegiate athletics.
In addition to the obvious monetary connection, the idea that school is for everyone is as antiquated as leather football helmets. School is NOT for everyone. In addition, recent studies show that a black man with a college degree is actually less likely to find employment than a white man without a high school diploma. So, tell me again how the monopoly of college basketball, as well as the racist assumption that we need to protect black kids from themselves by preventing them from playing straight out of high school, is better for kids?
Rick Pitino, once considered college basketball illuminati, is sitting at home right now, but hell find work again. So will former Arizona Wildcats head coach Sean Miller, who was allegedly caught on an FBI wiretap discussing a $100,000 payment to a player.
Meanwhile, via sanctions, removed banners and voided championships, its the student-athlete who is always made to suffer while the NCAA and crooked coaches continue to take advantage of these kids. I remember back in the day how Duke Universitys legendary basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski was a staunch opponent of one-and-done athletes. He wouldnt even recruit them. Now, hes just like everyone else. Where did all that morality go? Where did all that ethical high ground go?
As LaVar continues to grow his brand, and his progeny to continue to grow as ball players and young men, parents and guardians of talented players are left wondering whether they should continue showing mindless allegiance to NCAA basketball, which creates conditions that make it necessary for some kids to seek out compensation, then punishes the kid, school and coaches when theyre caught.
They are left to ask themselves, Who do I trust more with grooming my kid; myself or the NCAA? Judging how the NCAA generally treats kids, the diametric options are looking more balanced than ever.