Cover image for Sole influence : basketball, corporate greed, and the corruption of America's youth
Sole influence : basketball, corporate greed, and the corruption of America's youth
Wetzel, Dan.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Warner Books, [2000]

Physical Description:
xv, 299 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GV888.25 .W48 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



Explosive and controversial, this expos uncovers the exploitation of college, high school, and even junior high basketball players by the billion-dollar atheltic shoe companies competing for national endorsements. photo insert.

Author Notes

Don Yaeger was an Associate Editor at Sports Illustrated magazine. He is the co-author of Under the Tarnished Dome: How Notre Dame Betrayed Its Ideals for Football Glory, Pros and Cons: The Criminals Who Play in the NFL, and George Washington's Secret Six: The Spy Ring That Saved the American Revolution, Thomas Jefferson and the Tripoli Pirates: The Forgotten War That Changed American History, and Andrew Jackson and the Miracle of New Orleans: The Battle that shaped America's destiny.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

The best move Nike ever made was hiring Michael Jordan to endorse its products. Everyone got rich. Ever since the Jordan bonanza, shoe companies have dipped deeper and deeper into the basketball-playing youth of America in hopes of securing the next MJ. Wetzel and Yaeger expose the exploitive, often unethical, and sometimes illegal methods the shoe companies have used to dominate amateur and college basketball. Through their representatives, usually high-school and college coaches, the companies buy "loyalty" by supplying athletic gear to players and teams. They also fly players to amateur tournaments and camps, put coaches on their payrolls, and allegedly steer players to "their" colleges, the ones that receive money and gear to display the company's logo. The authors pull no punches in pointing out that the majority of the kids who become entangled with shoe companies are disadvantaged inner-city residents who are summarily abandoned as soon as their value to the corporation diminishes. All basketball fans are aware, at least peripherally, that this shameful situation exists, but Wetzel and Yaeger's exposeshould give the issue the wider exposure it deserves. Excellent reporting, powerful writing. --Wes Lukowsky

Library Journal Review

Wetzel, managing editor at Basketball Times, and Yaeger, associate editor at Sports Illustrated, show how the sneaker conglomerates court kids who might be next year's big stars. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Cast of Playersp. xiii
1. Unlike Mikep. 1
2. Shoes to Fillp. 15
3. Sonny and Georgep. 35
4. This Little Piggie Went to Nikep. 53
5. Romancing the Stonep. 70
6. Red, White, and Swooshp. 85
7. Wesley Wilsonp. 104
8. Mt. Zionp. 124
9. Be like 'Miquep. 141
10. Recruiting Rushp. 159
11. "Buy Your Own Goddamn Shoes"p. 178
12. The Summer Seasonp. 194
13. The Best Billboards Money Can Buyp. 214
14. Free Speech for Salep. 226
15. Standing Tallp. 236
16. Taking Responsibility for This Messp. 259
Epiloguep. 268
Indexp. 289