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Jeff Jordan Chooses Illinois

By Benjy Lipsman in News on Apr 29, 2007 3:35PM

Nobody ever questioned the determination of Michael Jordan. The guy who didn't make his high school basketball team worked hard came back to win a spot the next year... then went on to a standout college career, won six titles with the Bulls and was named athlete of the century by ESPN.

2007_04_sports_Jeffrey_Jordan.jpgWe guess that resolve rubbed off on his children, because son Jeff Jordan made a bold decision on Friday concerning his choice of college. The former star for Loyola Academy's basketball team turned down scholarship offers from a number of colleges -- including Loyola and Valparaiso -- to enroll at the University of Illinois, with the hopes of making their hoops squad as a "preferred" walk-on.

Jordan chose the opportunity that he can play in the Big Ten, one of the elite college basketball conferences, rather than accept the sure thing at one of the mid-major programs who recruited him. In making his announcement, he said, "I also look forward to proving that I can play and compete at the Big Ten level."

Clearly, tuition money isn't an issue for Jordan -- we hear his dad's got a few bucks left, even after the divorce settlement. So the lack of a scholarship doesn't matter financially. But will he be able to make Bruce Webber's team, and have a chance to play? Or would the younger Jordan have been better off choosing a smaller program and know he'd play?

Maybe he's a bit of a later bloomer, like his dad. His play supposedly improved dramatically between his junior and senior years. But will he continue to improve languishing on the Illini bench? On the other hand, maybe an initial lack of playing time will drive him to work harder.

Image via Daily Herald