[December 2017] Spending a day in his shoes LaMelo Ball’s signature shoe is revolutionary

Jarod Ferguson ’18

LaMelo Ball is a typical teenager in America, except, of course, for the fact that he has his own basketball shoe line produced by Big Baller Brand.

Ball, being the first high school student to have his own signature shoe has not garnered the recognition he deserves. Ball is averaging about 27 points per game and is ranked in the top 10 for all basketball recruits in his graduation year. He is on a straight path to the NBA, but taking his own way to get there.

This is what the media is not talking about when mentioning LaMelo Ball. His story should be an uplifting one about a boy making his dream come true on his own terms, but his last name, Ball, is keeping him from getting that positive attention.

Ever since his older brother, Lonzo Ball, who plays for the Los Angeles Lakers, burst onto the scene at the University of California, Los Angeles, the Ball family has had the media’s magnifying glass on them.

Then his other brother, LiAngelo, was just in jail for stealing in China. His father, Lavar Ball, the creator of Big Baller Brand, has added to the negativity due to his fiery exchange with President Donald Trump that overshadowed the achievements of his sons.

With all of this negative attention focussed on the Ball family, LaMelo’s story has been put on the backburner, and that should not be the case. If LaMelo had another last name, say Smith or Jones, his story would be lauded in all newspapers and media outlets. The media needs to look past the actions of his family and see that LaMelo is his own person, independent from the distractions that his family may cause.

LaMelo Ball is doing something truly revolutionary. He is keeping his services in his control by rolling out his own shoe brand. He is blazing his own path by becoming the first high school basketball player to have his own shoe. He is a role model for future high school athletes to follow. Although the media may portray his family in a negative light, that doesn’t make his story any less inspirational.