So much for holding onto your Letter of Intent as long as possible. A 6’4 8th grader will not have to tour various college campuses, because at the moment, he is committed to playing basketball at Kentucky when he graduates high school. Don’t get me wrong, I have defended the point that high school athletes should sign LOIs instead of potentially screwing up their careers by holding off; however, in this case we are talking about an 8th grader! If the kid can get a scholarship offer now, I would hope that the family is confident enough in his skills to believe that the same offer will be on the table four years from now.
What good can come out of this scenario? Initially, it seems like Michael Avery and his family will get some good press. How long it lasts is another question. I doubt any shoe companies are calling him to endorse their products…he may get a single high school game on TV if ESPN2 thinks he is special. And I am sure that a few agents will start hawking Avery’s parents, which cannot be a pleasant thing when your child is 15-years-old.
So why do this? I would try to reach Kentucky Coach Billy Gillispie, but he is unable to respond because of NCAA rules…the same NCAA rules that ridiculously allow a college program to grant a scholarship offer to an 8th grader.