The most hated sports dad in American history may have just taken his hate levels to new heights. The Big Baller Brand CEO isn’t just telling his kids to skip college—he’ll soon be offering top high school prospects a paid alternative to the National Collegiate Athletic Association.
On Tuesday, Ball announced that he’s starting the Junior Basketball Association, a paid basketball league for top high school prospects that would serve as an alternative to college. I can already hear the NCAA gearing up to shut all this down.
Ball shared news of the league with Slam magazine in this statement:
We have officially launched our own pro basketball league called the “Junior Basketball Association,” sponsored by Big Baller Brand.
The JBA is the very first junior pro basketball league of its kind.
The JBA will cater to the top ranked high school basketball prospects in America.
All nationally ranked high school seniors, whose main goal are to reach the NBA, will be offered an opportunity to join the JBA, turning pro straight out of high school and bypassing the usual college pit stop.
The participating players will be paid up to $10,000 per month, as they prepare to enter the NBA Draft the following year.
The JBA league is for basketball players who intend to pursue the sport professionally.
With the introduction of the JBA, allowing the NCAA to regulate and control the eligibility status of top basketball prospects will no longer be an issue.
There is no need to partake in an institution that claims its purpose is not to help you prepare for your professional career.
The recent statement from the President of the NCAA Mark Emmert when commenting on the recent withdrawal of LiAngelo Ball from UCLA sums it up:
“Is this a part of someone being part of your university as a student-athlete or is it about using college athletics to prepare yourself to be a pro? If it’s the latter, you shouldn’t be there in the first place.” -Mark Emmert
And we agree!
For decades, the NCAA has run a business that has exploited thousands of teens, while college institutions, coaches, media conglomerates, and corporate sponsors have all profited from the model.
The JBA is a long-awaited solution to this ongoing problem.
Stay tuned for more information in the coming weeks.
For updates visit jbaleague.com
This idea is genius!
For years the NCAA has had a stranglehold on collegiate talent. That talent has brought in tons of money for schools while leaving the players high and dry. NCAA players are not paid for their services, most are not allowed to work during their time with the school, and they don’t see a penny of the money the NCAA makes off of their abilities.
There have been tons of arguments written about why college athletes deserve to be paid, including this one that I like. Not to mention, the myth of the “student-athlete” was really created so that schools wouldn’t have to consider students as employees and therefore would never have to pay students who play sports for them.
An alternative junior varsity league would appeal to students who are going to college solely to major in sports—a game that the athletic prospect, the colleges and universities, and the NBA are all in on.
In the 2000s, there was a mad dash by high school prospects declaring for the NBA draft, weakening the NCAA product. To circumvent that, in 2006, the NBA instituted a rule that each player had to be at least 19 years old or have at least one year of college under his belt before declaring for the draft. This wasn’t done accidentally; it was done purposefully so that schools could continue to benefit from top talent attending their programs. The creation of said rule also spawned the notoriously abused one-and-done aspect of college basketball in which a player plays just one year to become eligible for the draft and then sends his old school the deuces.
The NBA is now considering changing the age of NBA draft entry to 20.
LaVar Ball is a black man, and owning a league that will now bypass the NCAA makes him a dangerous black man. It’s one thing for him to make decisions for his own money: Currently, Ball has pulled two of his sons—LaMelo from Chino Hills High School, and LiAngelo from UCLA—and has them both signed up to play for a Lithuanian team. But it’s another to mess with the NCAA’s money. And we are talking about potentially millions of dollars in loss for schools should this actually become a viable alternative. That makes Ball a target.
This is different from Ball’s boisterous claims of how he could beat Michael Jordan, or his beef with Charles Barkley. This is even bigger than his son’s international incident in China and his war of words with the president. This is another league—controlled by a black man—and there is nothing scarier in this world than a white man losing his power. Should this league become a success, for the first time ever, the NCAA won’t have a firm grab on young basketball talent.
In the end, I want to see LaVar Ball win. Anyone bucking up against the system and changing the status quo, especially where it favors black men, is a hero to me.
But I’m worried that this time, the loudmouth may have barked up the wrong tree.
Read more at Slam magazine.