Jashaun Agosto, Basketball Phenom: Have We Gone Too Far?

Ty'mon NormanCorrespondent IJune 27, 2008

Although he may have a training regimen that would leave some Olympic athletes in awe, should we really be looking to recruit kids as young as 11 years old?  Jashaun Agosto is a prodigy, and with that said, he definitely deserves the attention he's brought to himself.

As I've traveled from one event to the other, I'm continually witnessing how the urge to find the next LeBron James or O.J. Mayo has found its way into junior high schools and middle schools.  Agosto can do things with a basketball that most people only dream about.

Nestled away in the Northwest corner of the country (Federal Way, WA), Jashaun has become a household name, appearing on such shows like Jay Leno and Ellen.  Seattle's KOMO 4 did a piece on him earlier this year, with The Tonight Show & Good Morning America making inquiries, too.

Now with all that said, he might be more known for his appearances on Youtube! 

With all of the accolades that have been thrown at this young man, there must be a sense of him feeling that he has to live up to the hype!  Now his father might have him in the right mindset, but with letters of interest & questionnaires from schools like UCLA, could you blame him for having delusions of grandeur?

Maybe we, the media, need to know who the next big thing is to happen on the Prep scene, but in a way we're robbing these children of what I feel is the most important attribute to playing the game of basketball—"Having Fun"!

Along with him being very talented, a test at a Seattle sports clinic revealed he has an astonishing aerobic capacity.  Doctors measured his VO2 max, which rates the ability to transport and utilize oxygen during exercise, and Jashaun received a score of 66.

It's a shockingly high number for a child, and by the time Jashaun goes through puberty, his VO2 max is expected to be higher than most world-class athletes.  He could jump into the 80s, putting him in the same range as Lance Armstrong and Steve Prefontaine.

In my opinion, if he can keep all the leeches away from him and just enjoy playing the game, continue to grow and increase his basketball IQ, and develop more of an appreciation for what possibly could happen in his life, then and only then will he have the building blocks to become a great basketball player.

This is a article I would like to have a lot of feedback on.  Let's debate the issue of what age is too young to recruit, and whether it is right or wrong to do so.