2017 - C - Mo Bamba (Offer)


Just at the Jordan Brand Classic


He’s just saying the politically correct answer in every interview to avoid tipping his hand. I wouldn’t try to read into his comments.


It is clearly a tough decision for Bamba, so no reason for him not to take his time. He’s being smart and letting the process play out for him. He’s not “whoring attention” — by most accounts he’d prefer no one asks him about recruiting — just being diligent, IMO. I have no problem with that.

Yes, it presents potential issues to the school’s he dealing with — how do you manage scholarship slots, etc. But that is not on him, that’s on the system.

And if we’re being honest, it doesn’t make sense for any elite recruit to sign a Letter of Intent — those give all the power to the school and strip the prospective student-athlete of any future rights/recourse. Smart advice for any highly recruited student-athlete is sign the financial aid agreement but not the LOI…financial aid agreement locks the school in to you, but not you to the school.


I agree on the LOI fully. But I disagree on taking his time, it’s a bit prime-donna in him at this point. Don’t talk about how important a school is in your decision and then you end up being part of one for 8 months.

If he ends up going to Texas or Duke, seriously what is the point to continue to wait it out? Unless he’s waiting for Grayson Allen to make a decision? For Texas, I don’t think they’re in on any other top recruits so that team is set. Kentucky is pretty much set as well.

Michigan is really the only school up in the air with Moe and DJ’s decisions.


I just don’t understand the vitriol over a kid taking a time to make an incredibly important decision. What does he have to gain by rushing his choice?

Why can’t school be important if he’s only there for a year? He’ll still go to classes and could find value in them. He’s said many times how important the alumni networking opportunities are after the fact.

I just don’t get the negativity over a kid deciding how he wants and when he wants.


I don’t have any vitriol toward him. I have/had absolutely no problem at all waiting to decide. I fully agree with you and him, take all the time you need UP TO THIS POINT. There’s no reason at all to sign a LOI for any athlete.

In my opinion, NOW it doesn’t make any sense anymore to wait. I start rolling my eyes a little bit as of now, since all the draft decisions have been made for all schools except Michigan.

Sure, we have no idea if he wants to go to Michigan and is waiting on Moe and DJ to decide. If that’s the case, I’d gladly let others tell me “there’s your answer, that’s why”.


I wonder if he’s going to do the hat shuffle when he announces. Nothing annoying about that at all.


I try not to criticize 18 year olds during this decision process. Actually a lot of times I’m impressed how well a lot of these kids handle the pressure and attention. If I put myself in their shoes at that age I’d likely have been the absolute worst. I’d be doing things like making vague statements on twitter just to watch fan bases react, refer to myself in the third person constantly and possibly drop a rap song or two.


Would they let you sign the FAE prior to the LOI? If I were the school I’d make the former contingent on the latter.



Or maybe he just hasn’t decided yet, like he’s said in numerous interviews? Why are you assuming that he’s already made his decision and is just keeping it secret? Is he not allowed to take time to make sure he makes the decision that he feels most comfortable with? Like @CoryR said, getting mad at a 17/18 year old for something like this is incredibly odd.


Ok well you just made my point then. What more is there to decide on at this point for Duke, Texas and Kentucky?

That’s my whole point now. To me, if he still hasn’t made up his mind on those schools then he’s entering prime-donna recruit mode a little bit. There’s not a whole lot more to decide.

He’s taken A TON of time, and deservedly so because it is a VERY important decision. However, up to this point he knows the coaches, knows the schools, knows the systems he’d be utilized in and at Texas/Duke/Kentucky he knows 95% of the players that’ll be there. There’s no more waiting that needs to be done. People need to stop acting like there’s all these important decisions he needs to make from this point on. He HAS to choose a school and outside of Michigan he knows everything he needs to know for 3 of the 4.


(Sorry, this is a little bit of a sidewinding conversation from the main focus)

Yes. Technically prospective student-athletes don’t have to ever sign a Letter of Intent to play in college — they can just enroll at the school of choice.

It’s a school’s choice the order it asks for the forms, but the school/program benefits from the LOI, so that’s the form it cares most about. A Mo Bamba level recruit could probably go without signing a LOI w/o any repercussions — some elite program would take him w/o him signing a LOI. An Ibi Watson level recruit probably wouldn’t have the same leverage or options with regard to signing a LOI.


“Up to this point” is just your own subjective timeframe. No reason to criticize a kid and say he’s being prima donna about it. He spread out his official visits over the course of like 6-7 months. Absolutely no reason to expect him to operate on anybody else’s timeframe.

He’s said relationships with coaches are one of the most important things to him. Naturally, the more time you get to build a better relationship with someone, the more you really know about them.

Even if he is doing it for attention, who cares? The longer he waits, the more people are going to know about him. Which means potentially better endorsement deals when he goes pro. All for athletes milking what “amateurism” gives them at this point.


He said he’s not taking in home visits, or at least none scheduled.

That is the definition of acting like a prima donna. I absolutely don’t see that in him or think he’s doing it for any of those reasons. All I’ve said is he’s starting to show a little bit of that in him for continuing to hold off on a decision.


Maybe he’s been at school (in PA) or all of these events and hasn’t had a chance to go home with his family and inner circle and think about actually making a decision?

There are so many logical explanations when he doesn’t even need one.

  1. No in homes doesn’t mean 0 contact.

  2. Which is why I said “even if he is…”. It’s not a reason for criticism IMO. A prima donna is someone that is egotistical and vain. I don’t think those descriptors fit Bamba at all based on every interview and analysis I’ve seen of him.


He seemed seriously conflicted in that recent interview. There isn’t apparently one school that checks all of his boxes. Michigan offers the network and academics, Texas the coaching relationship and Duke a legendary coach, crazy fans and academics. I don’t know what Kentucky offers except almost a straight up NBA prep season which it excels at providing. It seems to me that he needs to settle on what’s most important to him or maybe get his family to agree on what he thinks is most important.


First off, I said he’s starting to act “a little” like a prima donna. I don’t think he is one or is arrogant at all. He seems very very smart and well educated by all accounts. My point is I think he is starting to get a little of that in him with this process and waiting.

Secondly, even if he is very educated and well spoken, doesn’t mean he isn’t BSing a little bit through all this. This doesn’t just go for Bamba, but for anyone, don’t tell me academics are important and list Kentucky as one of your final schools. So no academics aren’t, otherwise you head straight to Duke if you want the school with best academics and the best team. Certainly can see Texas or Michigan too but not Kentucky.

That’s why overall and in JUST MY OPINION he doesn’t really know what he wants and I don’t truly feel he overly cares. He’s eyeing the NBA and college is just a minor stepping stone to it. When you’re this talented and can be a top 5 pick, heck yeah go this route! 100%! Doesn’t mean there’s not some ego in him.


Mark Prima Donnal