Big Baller Brand and Iona partnership: Is it possible?

Lonzo Ball’s ZO2 Prime are worth $450.

Ryan McFadden , Sports Editor

An Iona Big Baller Brand sponsorship will probably not happen, but it’s fun to picture the men’s or women’s team walking on the court wearing Melo Ball 1 or ZO2 Prime—which is worth a whopping 495 dollars—while supporting the “BBB” icon on their jerseys.

Picture this: the Iona College men’s basketball team stepped onto the court in the Hynes Center for their typical pregame routine: trotting around the baseline before taking practice shots on their side of the gym. The only difference was that the Gaels were not sporting their usual Adidas warm-up gear or shoes. Instead, they were wearing gear sponsored by Big Baller Brand, a shoe company run by the outspoken Lavar Ball and his three sons Lonzo, LaMelo and LiAngelo.

“I would be like ‘wow that’s crazy!’ Out of all brands, we went to Big Baller,” junior guard Rickey McGill said. “I will still play in them because I don’t really care about the brand.”

As Lonzo spent the summer preparing for his rookie season with the Los Angeles Lakers, Lavar took every chance he had in the public eye to hype up his brand and help label Lonzo as one of the best players in the NBA.

Lonzo has a target on his back as multiple players around the NBA want to punish him on the court, thanks to his father. However, Lavar has made a name for himself, his family and brand.

“I actually like Big Baller Brand to be honest,” freshman guard C.J. Seaforth said. “I think his dad [Lavar] is hilarious and they are making social media crazy.”

Graduate transfer Zach Lewis is a fan of the Big Baller Brand kicks and wouldn’t mind wearing them during a game if he had the chance. His biggest concern if Iona was sponsored by Big Baller Brand would be the jerseys.

“I would want to see what the jerseys would look like,” Lewis said. “I wouldn’t be mad at the shoes, they look nice. $500 shoes on the court – you can’t be mad at that.”

The prices for the shoes was alarming to some of the players, as they don’t believe the ZO2 Prime or Melo Ball, which is LaMelo’s signature shoe, are worth the money.

“I really don’t think they are worth that much money,” McGill said. “But they can be worth a good $250. It’s their own brand so I can’t knock them for the prices, but I think they can be lower than what it is.”

Senior guard Deyshonee Much was on the same side as McGill in regards to the shoes. However, he mentioned that he would consider buying them if the prices were lower.

“I respect what he does as a father for his kids,” Much said. “If they came down to a reasonable price, maybe just out of respect. They look like a pair of Kobe’s.”

It’s obvious that Big Baller Brand is not on the same level as its competitors such as Nike, Under Armour and Adidas. That said, Lavar’s unorthodox marketing strategy and determination to be different may see his company climb up the charts. Who knows—one day you could see Big Baller Brand sponsoring a high school basketball team or college.

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