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When it comes to the future of LaMelo Ball’s basketball career, there is a lot we don’t know. Formerly ranked as a top 10 recruit in the Class of 2019, Ball could take any number of routes to try to make the NBA in the next few years.
However, there is one thing we definitely do know: Ball won’t be following in his brothers’ footsteps at UCLA.
LaVar Ball shoots down any possibility of LaMelo attending UCLA
A TMZ reporter caught up with LaVar Ball on Monday with a number of questions, one being where LaMelo wants to go to college. Seemingly unaware of just how burned the Ball family’s bridge is with UCLA, the reporter asks Ball if UCLA is LaMelo’s first choice. His reaction is priceless.
“Heck no. He won’t be at UCLA though,” Ball said, incredulously. “UCLA, why? After what they did to my other son, are you crazy? What they did with Gelo, think I’m going to go back? Messed that up. Don’t mess with none of my boys. See what happened after they left, UCLA ain’t nothing now.”
When asked the curious question of what UCLA exactly did to Ball’s middle child, the patriarch reeled off a list of grievances ranging from suspending him for shoplifting in China to not giving him his preferred jersey number.
So that door is seemingly closed for UCLA, not that UCLA is complaining.
Will LaMelo Ball even play college basketball?
Of course, the big question for LaMelo Ball isn’t where he’ll be going to college. It’s if. The 17-year-old has already run into amateur eligibility issues in high school since enrolling at the SPIRE Institute, with multiple basketball powerhouses refusing to play the team.
Even though the Ball family claimed that LaMelo received no money from his time playing for a Lithuanian professional basketball league and his father’s Junior Basketball Association, he still runs into a massive list of issues putting his eligibility in doubt. That includes his sneaker line, his hiring of an agent and that playing with professionals in a professional setting is still an infraction in the NCAA’s eyes even if you receive no money.
Add all that up, and it’s hard to see the NCAA ever allowing Ball to play for one of its programs. And that’s a shame, because according to LaVar, LaMelo is apparently even better than LeBron James was at age 17. We’ll see if the first-year Los Angeles Laker has something to say to his teammate’s father about that.
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