If LeBron James serving as an executive producer for an HBO Documentary about the NCAA wasn’t enough to grab your attention, Kentucky fans may want to tune in to see Wildcats big man Nick Richards, who will be featured in the production.
The 90-minute documentary will air Tuesday, Oct. 2 at 10 p.m. ET.
Here’s an excerpt from the HBO press release sent out earlier today:
Unpaid college athletes generate billions of dollars for their institutions every year. STUDENT ATHLETE unveils the exploitative world of high-revenue college sports through the stories of four young men at different stages of their athletic careers, as well as a coach-turned-advocate and a whistle-blowing shoe rep who exposes the money trail.
The documentary spotlights: former NCAA and NFL coach John Shoop; New Jersey high school basketball phenom Nick Richards, now at the University of Kentucky; Mike Shaw, who played at the University of Illinois and Bradley University; Shamar Graves, a former wide receiver at Rutgers University; and Silas Nacita, a walk-on who played at Baylor University.
From high-school recruiting to post-graduation, the usefulness of athletes is tied to their ability to produce revenue. Once they can no longer do that, their participation in sport ends – often abruptly – with virtually nothing to show for their contributions. An audited financial disclosure from the NCAA in March 2018 revealed the association had close to $1.1 billion in revenue during 2017, a total that was unimaginable in 1964, when the NCAA coined the term “student athlete.”
It’s not yet clear how featured Richards will be and what exactly his role will be in the documentary, but it certainly does sound intriguing.
Also from today’s release:
Directors Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and Trish Dalton say, “We embedded in the world of men’s college basketball and football, capturing athletes’ hopes and dreams being shattered by the harsh reality of what it means to be a ‘student athlete’ in a billion-dollar industry.”
The production team is spearheaded by NBA superstar and three-time world champion LeBron James, one of today’s most socially responsible and community-minded athletes.
STUDENT ATHLETE is an HBO Sports presentation in association with LeBron James, Maverick Carter and Jamal Henderson at SpringHill Entertainment, and Steve Stoute at United Masters; directors, Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy and Trish Dalton; For HBO: executive producer, Rick Bernstein; supervising producer, Joe Perskie.
It should be interesting to say the least.