Tuesday, November 22, 2016

NIKE & Under Armour Continue to Impact National Landscape with Program Additions

The rich are getting richer; CP3 who is one of the top programs in the country regardless of brand and has the luxury shared by only a handful of team in the USA.  They have the pro sponsorship from NBA Superstar Chris Paul, they have the sponsorship and support from the GOAT and the Jordan Brand, and they hold a relationship with NIKE and the EYBL circuit.

So what could make things better for a program that has the #1 player, Wendall Carter, as well as multiple nationally ranked players at every level on the high school side? 
Well in a just announced move CP3 will be the new home of former national champs and one of the winningest teams in the country in 2016 GC Ballers (2022).  Making the acquisition even sweeter the deal includes the #1 ranked player in the class of 2022 Jaden Bradley.
Along with “All World” do everything Bradley; the team has fellow Middle School All-American selection Johnathan “JJ” Stallings as well multiple Top 150 ranked players.  With the value of the new NIKE/Jordan relationship and the advantageous location of North Carolina with respect to the hierarchy of the 2022 class there are some talented players potentially in play in that region that could have CP3 2022 in a great position for years to come.  Rumors are running rampant and the program is still welcoming prospects in the gym to strengthen an already know national powerhouse.
When your best player is also your most unselfish player, when you have an elite level coach who has produced and developed NBA players and multiple college stars, and you combine that with elite level program, Jordan/NIKE sponsorship, and access to the premier high school circuit….nothing could be finer right now in 2022 than to hoop in Carolina. 
The GC Baller transition to CP3 has given new meaning to the CP3 All-Stars.

The George Hill All-Stars have also officially made a move that will significantly impact the landscape in the Midwest region becoming members of UA and the UA Association on the high school side.  Under Armour previously maintained a relationship with the Indy Hoosiers AAU program where they became acquainted with one of the programs (AAU) Head Coaches, Mike Peterson.

Peterson, a graduate of Southport High School, maintained a relationship with many top players in the area ~ most recently with former Southport and current Prolific Prep star Paul Scruggs; who was without question a candidate for Indiana Player of the Year.

On the High School side Paul Scruggs was Coached by Headman Kyle Simpson and a staff that also included amongst others Notre Dame and 2001 Indystar Mr. Basketball Chris Thomas.  Simpson who also acts as the program Director of the Indy Hoosiers, a fully funded Under Armour outfit; was the umbrella where Mike Peterson coached nationally ranked Paul Scruggs whom he has worked with for nearly a decade – unfortunately in the ever changing world of AAU basketball; there came a point where these two gentlemen did not see eye to eye.

The result?  Simpson moved on with his UA sponsorship deal in one direction and Peterson remained with the Indy Hoosiers program.  The short of this seems to be in our analysis, Peterson doesn’t deliver the player (Scruggs) Peterson no longer will have access to the benefits of the sponsorship.  Peterson who also has a relationship with recent Duke Commit Gary Trent Jr. is now a man with a sponsorship; and in turn Simpson many thought was a man without a prime time player(s) or team.

Enter Mike Saunders; one of the winningest programs in the country over the last 5 years at the grammar and middle school levels.  Add to that former IUPUI, former Indiana Pacer, now Utah Jazz PG George Hill and Simpson and his UA sponsorship now had another viable home for Indiana’s top players and prospects.  The program will operate on the circuit as G3 Grind and appear in the UA Association in 2017. 

Could this move simply be coincidence?  Possibly, but for those that know the world and underbelly of the High School AAU game no one believes it to be so.  Pulling a prime player from the person who holds the deal has never been a wise decision in this game.  The fact that Saunders and his George Hill All-Stars were entering High School now, had the elite level team(s)/program and players positioned them perfectly to walk in and hit the ground running because they already had the requisite infrastructure – but it hasn’t been easy!

Knowing that the group will immediately be a formidable player in the Midwest the competition has been vicious and are doing anything and everything to gain an edge.  How bad?  Stay tuned as later this week we will be releasing an exclusive interview with Mike Saunders discussing the state of affairs with G3 Grind, his new deal, and the landscape turf wars in the Midwest.  If the rumors are true coming out of Indiana is there is a no rules no holds barred approach that has been instituted just like the rest of the country.   

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