I got an e-mail about an article in this week's SI a couple of days ago and finally decided to write a quick post about it. Here's the article.
I find this pretty sickening. It seems to be basically a combination of everything that is wrong with the AAU system. A basketball "school" set up in cooperation with an international academic program. A couple of highlights:
"In addition, these kids live in a $425,000 five-bedroom house in Las Vegas with everything paid for, including lodging, transportation, food, laptops, Nike gear, and full cable TV, among other things."
"Taylor says that the Findlay Prep Pilots program is the latest step in the evolution of elite high school basketball: “A program that operates completely outside the traditional high school system and makes no pretense about its top priority—to acquire the best talent from all over the world… Not being sanctioned by the national federation means the Pilots have no academic eligibility requirements and no restrictions on travel, transfers or practice time, as conventional high schools do. Findlay Prep answers to no one…. It’s that freedom from rules that makes critics see Findlay Prep as little more than an AAU team masquerading as a high school program.”
Taylor writes: “The naysayers didn’t worry teams such as Findlay Prep, runner-up Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) and Montrose Christian School (Rockville, Md.), which are not members of any state federation, nor ESPN, which seized upon the opportunity to showcase some of the nation’s top high school recruits—and ignored any questionable circumstances, describing Findlay Prep as having an enrollment of 775 and never mentioning its unique arrangement with Henderson International during Sunday’s broadcast.”
Thanks a lot, ESPN.