You may have heard that Mike Jordan has a kid who is a sophomore guard at the University of Illinois. You may have also heard that this son, Jeff, is a little smaller than his dad and not quite as gifted with the rock in his hands, but that he occasionally can wow folks with a highlight-reel dunk replete with tongue-wag after the flush.
What you may not have known is that Jordan the Junior was a walk-on for the year-plus he’s been a member of the Illini program. No longer. Citing Jeff Jordan’s tenacity on defense and willingness to be a team player, Bruce Weber announced yesterday that he would receive a scholarship as a product of his hard work. From the St Louis Post-Dispatch:
“He’s proven to us that he belongs,” Weber said. “He’s done a nice job of having a niche, a role. He’s a pest on defense. He pushes the ball on the break as well as anyone — better than Chester (Frazier) and Demetri (McCamey). He’s just a quality kid and a good team member.”
But wait, haven’t we heard this story before? Young pup gets denied by coach only to come back stronger than ever the next year en route to taking over the marketing and basketball world for a generation? Well… that story is true, but the parallel ends because it involved MJ’s high school tribulations, and JJ is already in college. Even so, JJ’s numbers (1.4 ppg/1.3 apg on 53% shooting in 10 mpg) suggest that has risen to the level of contributor in his college career, and mayb he has another 5-inch growth spurt still in him.
Well, even if he doesn’t grow any further, we figure his dad owes him a new one of these based on the $25k or so a year he saved the Company.