Since the beginning of the twentieth century, people have enjoyed playing the game of basketball. Indeed, in the United States, college basketball has gained quite a following nationwide. Now, with the immense popularity of the NBA and its superstars, many students are looking to get noticed in college basketball recruiting, to play in college teams and even perhaps in the NBA.
The NBA is recognized not only in the United States, but worldwide. The league itself has seen players from various drafted into teams in both the East and West coast. In the 2002-03 season, the entrance of the 7’6” C-Yao Ming into the NBA was big news. Yao is the first foreign player to be drafted first overall in the history of the NBA Draft. Yao was selected to play with the Houston Rockets. His entrance was received with much fanfare, and he rapidly became a cultural icon in his native China. Such was his popularity that it exceeded the level attained by some of the established NBA stars. This was most evident with his selection by fans to start the NBA All-Star game, ahead of the game’s most dominant player, Shaquille O’Neal.
Yao was symbolic of the internationalization of the NBA. The league was enjoying an increase of popularity outside of the United States, and this paved the way in developing talent across the globe. In addition to Yao, the NBA enlisted the skills and talents of such international stars such as Dallas Maverick’s Dirk Nowitzki (from Germany) and G-Steve Nash (of Canada); the Sacramento Kings had F-Peja Stojakovic and C-Vlade Divac (both from Serbia Montenegro); the Memphis Grizzlies’ F-Pau Gasol (from Spain); the San Antonio Spur’s G-Tony Parker (from France); the Utah Jazz’s F-Andrei Kirilenko (of Russia); the Cleveland Cavaliers’ C-Zydrunas Ilgauskas (hailing from Lithuania); Milwaukee Buck’s F-Toni Kukoc (of Croatia); the Philadelphia 76ers’ C-Dikembe Mutombo (from Congo) and C-Todd McCulloch (from Canada); and the New Orleans Hornets’ C-Jamaal Magl4oire (Canada). The influx of international players continues to raise the level of the game, as well as demonstrate that basketball is increasingly becoming a global game.
The Internet has proven to be a useful venue for both students in college basketball and coaches involved in the process of college basketball recruiting. There are many websites and online forums wherein students and scouts can come together and interact. D1Athletes is an online community wherein high school athletes and coaches alike can share and exchange information they need during college basketball recruiting. D1Athletes offers them a place to build an online presence and gain important public exposure.