Editor's note: Chuck Hanf normally writes over at Two Cents From Beantown, which is obviously a Boston-based sports blog, and is one of the regular reads for one of the FanIQ editors. You can probably guess which one. If you like what you see here, check out his blog. It's worth it.
Have any of you heard about the curious case of Jeremy Tyler? If not, I'm here to fill you in on him today. I wish the young man good luck in his endeavor but I flat out don't agree with what he, and most of all his parents, are doing.
Tyler just finished his junior year of High School at San Diego High, and had previously verbally committed to Rick Pitino at Louisville. That was then, but now he is attempting to become the first American player to leave High School prematurely and play professionally overseas in Europe. He most likely would be playing in Spain. For those of you that don't know, you have to be 'one year removed' from High School to be eligible to enter the NBA Draft. So after you graduate, you can either go to college for a year or you can play elsewhere, but you can not enter the draft right after graduation. In Tyler's case he will be skipping his senior year so he will play two years professionally in Europe and then come back to the U.S. and enter the draft where he is expected to be a top 5 pick. He is a dominating 6'11" post player who is expected to be a perennial NBA All Star, according to Sonny Vaccaro, a former executive for sneaker company Nike. Vaccaro has 'helped' guide Tyler and his family through this situation. What a guy! He is also the man who signed Michael Jordan to Nike in early stages of Jordan's career. Pardon me, but if I'm being advised and 'helped' by Sonny Vaccaro on a huge decision that has to be made on my son's future, I'd be a little skeptical as to what Vacaro's main interests are in this situation, wouldn't you?
Here's my take on it all: Finish High School Jeremy.. Yeah, you're getting triple teamed and hacked by your opponents who every game try to take you out of the equation because of your skills. So what son? You have one year left---get your diploma. After that, hey, I respect the fact that you don't want to go to college and you want to play against greater competition in Europe rather than have to go to class and pretend you are in college for any other reason other than to play hoop. I understand that completely. But what if you get hurt over in Europe in the next two years kid? What are you going to do? Come back home with you tail between you legs and get your GED? Will you go back to San Diego High and finish your last year? Or will you say screw it and end up slingin' hash browns and flipping pancakes at IHOP? This is where the parents should've stepped in. At the end of the day, Tyler is their KID and his parents are sitting back and being 'advised' by Sonny Vaccaro? What is going on here? At least if Tyler finished HS and did end up getting hurt over there he could come back home and regroup WITH his diploma in hand and then decide if he will hit the work world or head off to college. He shouldn't have to come home and worry about finishing another year of High School or getting his GED. I really hope that this doesn't become a new trend in the U.S. and I hope that parents don't allow it to become a new trend. That being said, at the end of the day, I guess everyone has a right to seek employment once they reach the appropriate age---and yes, I understand that there's potentially a lot of money at stake in this case.
Good Luck Jeremy, I do mean that. I just wish your parents would've stepped in when you needed them the most and told Sonny and Spain to go piss up a tree until you get your diploma next spring.
-Chuck Hanf, Two Cents From Beantown
Jeremy Tyler Leaving High School Early To Play Basketball In Europe