Touted as the best point guard in the class of 2008, Brandon Jennings signed with Pallacanestro Virtus Roma of the Italian pro league. Jennings who played at Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) last season, decided to bypass college and sign a ‘multimillion-dollar’ deal with the Rome-based team.
At 18, Jennings could not enter the NBA draft due to the league’s age restrictions for prospects under 19 years old. Bypassing the opportunity to be a “one year” player after committing to Arizona (he was academically ineligible), Jennings opted to explore immediate payment for his services in Europe.
His advisor, longtime former shoe company representative Sonny Vaccaro, negotiated in Las Vegas during the weekend with Virtus Roma GM Dejan Bodiroga. Without disclosing the exact numbers, Viccaro described the deal as a three-year multimillion dollar deal with buyout considerations that will allow Jennings to leave the team and enter the NBA draft when eligible next year. The GM commented further explaining a comprehensive plan for Brandon that included specific training, education, tutoring programs, and media training.
I honestly have no problems with him going after money. The 19 age limit rule doesn’t make much sense to me, I don’t see a point in a player taking up a scholarship spot in order to leave the very next year. I predict a whole lot of future players exercising this option. Time will tell.
7/16/08 – 4.1 miles in 39:32 (slow run right after biking home)