When Big Baller Brand announced Thursday that LaVar Ball’s youngest son, LaMelo Ball, had a new signature sneaker available for pre-order, everyone’s first question was how it would affect the high school junior’s NCAA eligibility.
The NCAA has rules against players being paid for promoting products or allowing your name or picture to be used to promote anything, but the rule specifically states it applies “after collegiate enrollment.” It seems LaMelo will be safe even though he verbally committed to UCLA, but it doesn’t bother his father either way.
“We’ll worry about it when we get there,” Ball told ESPN on Thursday. “Who cares? If he can’t play, then he can’t play. It doesn’t mean he’ll stop working out and getting better.”
So, until LaMelo actually goes to college, he’ll be OK to profit off the $395 MB1 sneakers. Ball’s middle son, LiAngelo Ball, will eventually get his own sneaker, too, after he plays for one year in college — the NBA minimum to be eligible for the draft — like his father wants all of his sons to do.
“Gelo will be next, but right now he’s handcuffed by UCLA,” Ball told ESPN. “He’d be ineligible if we put out a shoe with him.”
“He won’t be ineligible in April,” he added. “That’s when he’ll have his own shoe.”
Thumbnail photo via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports Images