Bronny would do well at Duquesne

Brentaro Yamane | multimedia editor | As a childhood friend of LeBron James, Dru Joyce III (center) already has ties to Bronny, James’ son.

Brentaro Yamane | Multimedia Editor

On Friday, Bronny James, son of LeBron James, announced his decision to enter the NBA Draft while maintaining his college eligibility by entering the NCAA transfer portal.

Bronny is one of the most popular players in college basketball at the moment, given his father’s record as the NBA’s all-time leading scorer.

There is discussion now on whether Bronny will get drafted by the NBA based on his stats during his freshman year at the University of Southern California (USC). In his freshman season, Bronny played in 25 games, starting in six of those contests. He averaged 4.8 points per game while playing an average of 19.6 minutes.

However, his performance during his freshman year may not even matter, as he may get drafted to the NBA solely based on his name.

If Bronny doesn’t get drafted or sign with an NBA team, that will leave him back to college and searching for an NCAA team to join.

The decision for Bronny would then be which school he would attend. There has been speculation that Duquesne may be one of his top choices, as reported by Adrian Wojnarowski for ESPN.

He’d do well by coming to Duquesne for his sophomore year. Family ties to the men’s basketball program’s staff and the quieter environment of the A-10 would go a long way toward his development as a player and a person.

College athletes pick schools based on the name, image and likeness (NIL) rights offered to them.

Whether Bronny stays at USC, transfers to another Power 5 school or moves to a small Division I school like Duquesne shouldn’t matter to him, at least as far as NIL rights are concerned. Companies will be offering him money and endorsement deals either way.

This past year, according to Sports Illustrated, Bronny was one of the highest-paid college athletes, with his highest valued NIL deal sitting at $5.9 million.

Bronny would also make a bigger impact at a smaller school like Duquesne. Power 5 schools produce star players all the time like Duke’s Jerry McCain, DJ Burns Jr. of NC State and Zach Edey of Purdue — schools that have already built up legacies around their men’s basketball programs. At Duquesne, Bronny has an opportunity to help build a legacy, not just for himself, but for the Duke’s MBB.

Bronny would also benefit from moving down to a smaller league like the A-10. Doing so could provide him more confidence on the court and be an opportunity to improve his skill in a more manageable, less stressful environment.

But the biggest incentive for Bronny transferring to the Bluff is the Duke’s new head coach, Dru Joyce III. Joyce played 12 years of professional overseas basketball after playing college basketball at the University of Akron.

As for his relationship to Bronny, Joyce has known the kid since he was a baby given he is close friends with his father, LeBron. LeBron and Joyce played basketball together at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School and knew each other before that, first meeting when they were 10 years old.

Out of all the coaches in NCAA Division I, the person that likely knows Bronny the best, both as a person and a player, is Joyce.

And if Bronny is concerned with academics, Duquesne would make a great fit.

While at USC, Bronny majored in business administration. Coincidentally, as of February 2023, Duquesne’s Palumbo-Donahue School of Business was ranked by the Princeton Review as one of the best business schools in the country on both the graduate and undergraduate levels.

And if Bronny ever wants to get away from Duquesne during the weekend, he wouldn’t have to travel far to see family. With Bronny’s parents being from Akron, he likely has some family members that still live in the area.

If Bronny decides to go back to college and does pick Duquesne, his father LeBron would be in attendance to watch a game. But also, his choice in school could affect his younger brother Bryce’s decision to attend Duquesne one day as well. If Bronny became a Duquesne Duke, this university would surely carry a meaningful legacy.

Bronny has a big choice to make. Should he not get drafted into the NBA, he’ll have to decide on what college would be the best fit for him. With familial ties and and a small, up-and-coming program, there is no better place for a young player like Bronny to be than Duquesne.