After talking about it for a few weeks, Brandon Jennings is officially skipping college next season and heading off to Europe for one year to play pro basketball.
While I applaud his intent — he had low test scores, so he figured why shouldn’t he make some cash if the NCAA would be making cash off of him — I don’t think this is brightest move because I think this is a bad gamble. Teams in Europe are looking to develop their guys long-term, not serve as a rest stop for players on the way to the NBA. And if goes to Europe and has a bad season in a place where the leagues are almost all vastly different from the style of play in the NCAA and NBA (the style Jennings has been studying for most of his life), he’ll only hurt his NBA stock. if he’s going for the cash, Henry Abbott and Jonathan Givony note that he’s not likely to cash in. He might get a shoe deal that will keep him flush for life, but even shoe money isn’t what it was when guys like Bassy were cashing in out of high school.
And I understand his test scores were low, but I find it really hard to believe some school couldn’t figure out a way to get him accepted, one way or another — there are plenty of players playing college basketball right now who were terrible students in high school.
However this works out, I am glad to see a player taking a chance, doing something out of the ordinary.
I just wish I didn’t have this nagging feeling that maybe this isn’t the best idea.