Would you skip college for $700,000?
05/11/2015 05:14 PM
LAS VEGAS — Earning a degree is an amazing accomplishment, but if someone offered you nearly a million dollars to skip school all together, would you do it?
That’s the pitch a new semi-pro basketball team in Las Vegas is trying to sell to the nation’s top high school basketball players.
A group of California businessmen are putting together a team called the Las Vegas Dealers and are targetting McDonald’s All-Americans to bypass college and immediately become paid professionals.
The group says it will pay salaries of up to seven-hundred-thousand dollars to top prospects who they consider to be “one-and-dones” and four-hunderd-thousand to college underclassmen over a 55-game season.
The Dealers would be a US-based organization, playing 40 games in Sin City followed by a 15-game tour against top teams in Europe.
Potential one-and-done college players would have the option to commit to one-year contracts, allowing them to still enter the NBA Draft during their first year of elibility — an added benefit over signing multi-year overseas contracts straight out of high school.
The semi-pro season would start in October, games would international rules, and sponsors would fund the team. In a press release, the Dealers leadership says negotiations are already underway with an apparel partner and with multiple venues in Las Vegas to act as the team’s homecourt.
Dealers owner Cerruti Brown says the group has already extended offers to several current McDonald’s All-American and expects at least five to sign with the Sin City squad.
“We don’t see any problems in landing the right kids,” said Browb. “Now, I’m not gonna say we’ll have 10 of the top 25 kids this year, but I’m gonna go on record as saying we’re gonna have five.”
Could such an American-based semi-pro league become a viable option for top-flight college players?
KSTV has the answers.