LeBron James said Tuesday that his 10-year-old son, LeBron James Jr., has already received a number of offers to play college basketball, and he’s not pleased about it.
"Yeah, he's already got some offers from colleges," James said, according to Fox Sport Ohio. "It's pretty crazy. It should be a violation. You shouldn't be recruiting 10-year-old kids."
James didn’t name any schools specifically when he said his son had received some offers, but a number of college coaches are already, uh, putting out feelers and making connections with his son, who also goes by Bronny.
Thad Matta, the heach coach of the Ohio State Buckeyes basketball team, for one, said in October -- when Bronny was still only 9 years old -- that he “will be” on the coach’s radar in the future. (James has a well-established link with the university.)
And, at a minimum, Bronny has already been in Kentucky coach and famed recruiter John Calipari’s office wearing his championship rings:
LeBron James Jr. is in Lexington and hanging out in John Calipari's office. pic.twitter.com/ekPEqM3fyL
— Dan Bodner (@DanBodnerKSC) July 18, 2014
The NCAA recruiting rules and regulations can prove convoluted and often difficult to completely understand, as evidenced by UConn women’s basketball head coach Geno Auriemma receiving a secondary violation from the NCAA last year for calling Mo’ne Davis during the Little League World Series. The university had given Auriemma permission to do so, thinking it permissible according to NCAA rules.
But it's likely that Bronny has yet to qualify as a “prospective student-athlete,” a technical NCAA term mostly applied to high school-level athletes that institutes stricter recruiting rules. That's because Bronny hasn’t even reached middle school yet.
Of course, that hasn't stopped the rankers from ranking him among the best players of his age group, at least according to WKYC, an NBC affiliate in the Cleveland area.
We couldn’t find a ranking like that ourselves. But as the Washington Post notes, there are a number of websites trying to nationally rank the skills of sixth graders, and Bronny certainly has one of the highest profiles of any basketball player his age. In recent months, multiple highlight videos showcasing his game have received millions of views. One, published on Monday, has already racked up more than 3.8 million:
Regardless, it’s highly likely that James mentioning any “offers” his son has received made the schools offering those offers incredibly, incredibly nervous.