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Bronny James Rumors: Oregon Emerges as Front-Runner to Land LeBron James' Son

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVAugust 16, 2022

Brian Murphy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Oregon Ducks men's basketball team may be appointment viewing during the 2023-24 season.

According to Jamie Shaw of On3 Sports, Oregon, Ohio State and USC are the three known schools to be recruiting Bronny James. He estimated that the Ducks had a 50 percent chance of landing LeBron James' son, while the other two programs each have a 25 percent chance.

"We are told James is going to go through the process," Shaw wrote. "At this point, the plan is to take virtual visits, Zooms, and in-person visits and go through the whole experience. Sources tell us that at this point, Oregon has a lead and that James will end up in Eugene."

The first connection that comes to mind with James and Oregon revolves around Nike. After all, LeBron signed a lifetime deal with the brand, and Phil Knight, who is the company's chairman, went to school at Oregon.

However, Shaw noted the younger James has a "comfort" with the program. It also doesn't hurt that Mookie Cook, who was travel teammates with Bronny in middle school, is part of the Ducks' loaded 2023 recruiting class.

That class already has Cook, who is a 5-star small forward, as well as 5-star power forward Kwame Evans Jr. and 4-star point guard Jackson Shelstad, per 247Sports' composite rankings.

It is currently the sixth-rated class and notably behind another contender in Ohio State (fourth), but adding James would certainly help it climb. James is a 4-star prospect and the No. 43 overall player, No. 7 shooting guard and No. 12 player from the state of California in the 2023 class, per 247Sports' composite rankings.

That is not to say this is a done deal.

USC is close to Sierra Canyon, where James attends high school. Former high school teammate Kijani Wright is also on the Trojans' roster.

As for Ohio State, the James family is from Ohio, and LeBron consistently supports the Buckeyes, be it by attending football games or shouting them out on Twitter. As Shaw noted, he even said he would have attended Ohio State if he played collegiately.

It seems as if this recruiting process will not end in the immediate future with James set to take visits to these schools and perhaps others, but Oregon apparently has the inside track for now.

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