Adidas Plays “What If. . .”

Posted by nvr1983 on March 12th, 2009

Adidas has just released a new series of commercials featuring several prep-to-pro stars pretending that they went to various schools.The ads themselves are fairly interesting, but I would be more interested in your thoughts on where these guys (and other prep-to-pros) would have actually gone and what impact they would have had on those programs. Would they have led their schools to multiple championships or would they fail to live up to expectations? Would Tracy McGrady win a round in the NCAA tournament? I know that CNNSI used to do a feature like this making an imaginary NCAA tournament, but I can’t find the link right now.

First, here are the commercials:




Personally I would have liked the videos to feature the guys either doing a big press conference where they announce which school they will be going to or some sort of dream sequence where Dwight Howard is dominating some mediocre college center (Brian Zoubek?).

After the jump we have a list of prep-to-pros since 1995. I am interested in hearing your thoughts on where they would have gone and what impact they would have had. Leave you thoughts in the comment section and your reasoning for the argument.

Kevin Garnett – was reportedly going to Michigan
Kobe Bryant –
was reportedly going to Duke
Jermaine O’Neal - was reportedly going to South Carolina
Tracy McGrady - committed to Kentucky
Stephen Jackson – committed to Arizona
Al Harrington -
down to Seton Hall or Georgia Tech
Rashard Lewis
Korleone Young
Jonathan Bender -
committed to Mississippi St.
Leon Smith
Darius Miles -
committed to St. John’s
DeShawn Stevenson -
committed to Kansas
Kwame Brown – committed to Florida
Tyson Chandler – I remember he wore a Michigan jersey during his “60 Minutes” piece when he was in high school
Eddy Curry - committed to Depaul
DeSagana Diop -
committed to Virginia
Ousmane Cisse
Amare Stoudemire -
committed to Memphis
LeBron James
Travis Outlaw -
committed to Mississippi St.
Ndudi Ebi -
committed to Arizona
Kendrick Perkins -
committed to Memphis
James Lang -
committed to Louisville
Dwight Howard -
was reportedly going to UNC
Shaun Livingston
– committed to Duke.
Robert Swift
Sebastian Telfair
– committed to Louisville
Al Jefferson - committed to Arkansas
Josh Smith - committed to Indiana
J.R. Smith
– committed to UNC
Dorrell Wright - committed to Depaul
Martell Webster -
committed to Washington
Andrew Bynum - committed to UConn
Gerald Green - committed to Oklahoma St.
C.J. Miles -
committed to Kansas
Monta Ellis -
committed to Mississippi St.
Louis Williams - commited to Georgia
Andray Blatche - committed to St. John’s (?)
Amir Johnson - committed to Louisville

I filled in some ones that I was fairly certain of, but feel free to correct me or add more to the list. I didn’t fill in the guys from the commercials because they obviously had some motivation to pick Adidas schools, which rules out some big name Nike schools like Duke and UNC. That wouldn’t happen in real life. At least I don’t think it would. . .

Thankfully, the new NBA rule is at least making guys go to college for a year (except in the case of Brandon Jennings) and we are hearing rumors that David Stern might make that two years. Still it’s interesting to think of what might have been particularly for some of these high school superstars who never panned out in the NBA. Would college have improved their game or would they have just flamed out at an earlier stage?

nvr1983 (1291 Posts)


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6 Responses to “Adidas Plays “What If. . .””

  1. Drew says:

    Makes sense that they are representing Adidas’ biggest schools, sponsorship wise.

  2. tyus edney says:

    Robert Swift was going to USC. He would have fit in perfect with that dysfunctional bunch.
    Tyson Chandler was supposedly enamored with Steve Lavin and would have made sure this Bruin Fan suffered every March for two decades instead of the one that the Hair-Gelled one actually did..

  3. jablo says:

    LeBron probably would have ended up going to Ohio State, alhtough it would have been awesome if he went hometown school by playing at Akron. At OSU im betting final 4, while at Akron maybe he carries them to a MAC title and Sweet 16 appearance? Of all these players I’m betting Howard or Stoudemire would have had the biggest impacts immediately; Stoudemire would have scored 30 a game in Conference USA after a year or two. Josh Smith definitely would have killed someone trying to take a charge who was standing directly under the basket (NBA has the circle). And Uconn almost certainly gets the 2006 title with Bynum, and maybe he convinces some of his theoretical teammates that season (Rudy Gay, HIlton Armstrong, Denham Brown, Josh Boone, Marcus Williams, etc) to stick around for a little while. If he stayed until senior year and was the center on this years team they would have the best frontcourt since at least Mourning and Mutombe- probably more like Walton and Lew Alcindor getting year together at UCLA.

  4. Hayesfan says:

    Can you imagine a team with Tmac and Prince together? I would have been in hog heaven. UK made the elite 8 in what would have been his freshman year. They would have made it much farther in 99-00 than the second round. Would have at least made the Final Four in 00-01 and I have no doubt could have won the whole thing in his senior year.

    If he would have stayed all the way with Tayshaun, the line up for that season would have been.

    Cliff Hawkins, Keith Bogans, Tmac, Tayshaun and Marguis Estill. With Erik Daniels Chuck Hayes and Gerald Fitch off the bench.

    Tmac would have been able to match everyone in the Maryland game and they would have marched on to the title.

    It makes me sad to think about it. LOL cause if they had they would have gotten better recruits and Tubby would still be the coach at Kentucky.

    Darn you Tmac!

  5. jersey says:

    Growing up I always rooted for players to go to college at least for a season, and every year my heart was broken when high schoolers and college early entrants flooded the NBA Draft.
    Anyway, this is something I’m actually good at remembering. Dorrell Wright was headed to DePaul, Perkins to Memphis, Ebi to Arizona, Diop to Virginia, Eddy Curry to DePaul, Miles to St. John’s and Al Harrington was going to either Seton Hall or Georgia Tech.

  6. Dr R says:

    Gerald Green was Okie State, not Mississippi State. Not that his mediocre presence would have made a huge deal.

    Garnett at Michigan would have been insane. He would have been wrapped up in the Bullock/Tractor Traylor class, a year following the Baston/Mo Taylor/Jerod Ward class. A sick amount of talent (most of which did little outside of college, and most likely were being paid under the table).