Zion Should Never Play College Basketball Again
Following the fiasco with Duke freshman superstar Zion Williamson's Nike shoe malfunction just 36 seconds into the Blue Devil's game against North Carolina on Wednesday, it became apparent that his brilliant, yet brief collegiate career should come to an end. It goes without saying that college basketball is a hell of a lot better with Zion than without him, and Duke went from being arguably one of the best freshman teams in the history of the sport to mere mortals without Williamson. Imagine the NCAA tournament minus the explosive once in a generation talent that he represents, for all of these reasons fans should hope that Zion decides to return from his grade 1 right knee sprain.
These are all selfish reasons that we as fans of the sport have for wanting Williamson to return, but in reality, he needs to consider the risks associated with ever playing college basketball again. Duke, Nike, the NCAA, television and so on will continue to make millions of dollars off of players like Zion, and those individuals will never see a red cent of those ridiculous profits. If Williamson's career ended tomorrow he would receive his insurance money and nothing more, a sad reality. It would be a different story if college athletes were paid, which should be the case considering the stunning amounts of revenue generated thanks in part to athletics.
Consider this, if Zion, a sure number one pick in the upcoming NBA draft continues to play college ball, which would surely risk additional injuries, then he's gambling with his future career as an NBA player. Why would you risk your professional career which will end up paying you tens of millions of dollars, as well as endorsement deals that will also make Williamson millions more? It makes no sense at all to continue playing for an organization that is profiting by you being there and offering nothing more than a scholarship and a few other perks in return.
Don't get me wrong, a scholarship is nice and worth a pretty penny, but its not worth millions of dollars. Zion has played the majority of the season for Duke and certainly helped them obtain their number one ranking and is the primary reason why they are one of the odds on favorites to win the NCAA tournament as well. The question that I will ask everyone out there is this; if you were in this situation, would you continue to play the rest of the season and risk millions of dollars? Some will say that Williamson should remain loyal to Duke and finish what he started.
My response to that is, Zion should do what makes him happy, and as an 18-year-old kid who will soon be compensated with financial security for the rest of his life, the risk to keep playing college ball is simply not worth the reward of winning a championship. In the end, the NCAA only cares about profiting from these kids and if they happen to get hurt, well it was nice that you helped us get richer, but there are thousands of more perspective athletes out there waiting to play for us and enable our organization to make a lot more money. Security is one the most important aspects of life, Zion its been fun, but now you need to think about your future, and I can give you 100 million reasons why it should include saying goodbye to college basketball.