Today, Brandon Jennings and entourage announced that the former high school star will drop his college career and play in Europe next season in order to prepare for the NBA draft.
We talked already about this story and its eventual consequences a few weeks ago but now it is official. Brandon Jenninings will not accept his scholarship at Arizona but instead move over to Europe whatever the results of his SAT test.
Pete Thamel of the New York Post also reports that the possible destination of the young man may be Italy and that he could eventually sign for about $300,000. If he is saying Italy because it is the only country in Europe he knows or because he has some inside information cannot be verified but the question remains how can a US-born teenager can have an impact on the European level. You can say that Ricky Rubio is also doing his job at the same age, but the Spanish kid has grown up here in Europe.
However, the NY Post article is also filled with some other nice clichés about European basketball. I quote John Calipari, one of the most respected coaches in the United States:
I don’t know if I’d want to be the first one, because your career is on the line. And here you are getting coached by a guy who doesn’t speak your language.
I don’t think that Jennings will land in the former Prokom Trefl coach’s team but as far as I know, most European coaches speak English as they have to communicate with their players. In my opinion, if Jennings has the correct mindset, he can only improve his basketball culture by playing in Europe and facing tough situations from which he learns for his future NBA career. He might hurt his short-time draft stock, but he will most likely improve as a basketball player and as a person.