Kareem Abdul-Jabbar believes that paying college athletes “some sort of stipend” could lead to some positive changes to college and professional basketball.
Conducting an interview with CNBC, Abdul-Jabbar lamented the lack of continuity in the college game. Kareem pointed out that as soon as a player “manifests the amount of talent the NBA wants, they make the jump.”
The former NBA superstar pointed out the stipend didn’t need to be a ton of money, but did add the NCAA is making hundreds of millions of dollars on these athletes.
Abdul-Jabbar also said the view of the college athlete is rooted in a picture of the world that dates back to the 1940’s.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar then turned his attention to talk about one of his former teams, the Milwaukee Bucks. Rumors have been swirling the Bucks might soon be up for sale.
Abdul-Jabbar wouldn’t say whether he was all in when it came to making a bid, but he did definitely express interest. During the interview, Kareem talked about his love of the Milwaukee area.
Abdul-Jabbar said he just returned from Wisconsin after shooting a commercial for the state’s tourism board. While Kareem is best known as one of the best basketball players of all time, he’s also had a short but memorable acting career.
Abdul-Jabbar’s most well known stint in front of the camera was as a pilot in the disaster movie spoof, Airplane. Kareem said the advertisement for the Wisconsin tourism board was actually a spoof of that movie.
That particular mention seemed to have been a way for Abdul-Jabbar to point out that he does indeed have ties to Milwaukee. That seems to be another way of pointing out that not only is he interested in buying the Bucks, but he wants the fans to support that effort.
Since his retirement, Kareem has made several efforts to continue to be involved both in the NCAA and the NBA. Most recently, Abdul-Jabbar campaigned for the head coaching job at his Alma Mater, UCLA. While Kareem was openly interested in the job, he didn’t get much support from the school, who decided on Steve Alford.
Should Abdul-Jabbar become someone who is in charge of a professional basketball franchise like the Milwaukee Bucks, he may someday be in charge of hiring a coach just like Steve Alford.
Until that day, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar will have to be content being on the outside looking in.