Most parents who want to send their kids to camp in the summertime have to pay hundreds, even thousands of dollars. If your kid happens to be a really good basketball player, you probably won’t have to pay a 1)dime. Your kid will go to camp, basketball camp, 2)courtesy of Nike or Adidas. Those shoe companies 3)scour the country for the best basketball talent and compete like crazy to get those kids into their brand, offering free shoes, free trips, free camps to even younger players.
Interviewer: How old were you when they started 4)singling you out? Were you just a little kid?
Tyson Chandler: It was about 5th grade, 6th grade.
When we first met him in 1997, Tyson Chandler had just finished the 8th grade. But he and his teammates on the southern California all stars were already sponsored and equipped by Nike.
Interviewer: You’te all wearing Nike.Chandler: Yeah.
Interviewer: You have Nike on, too.
Interviewer: You’re Nikemen.
Chandler: All Nike.Nike and Adidas have turned summertime into a huge basketball 5)bazaar, spending millions of dollars to 6)coral every kid with a decent jump shot. Betting that one or two of them will develop into superstars and human 7)billboards. As soon as kids are finished with their junior high or high school seasons in the spring, coaches armed with free shoes are weighing to recruit them from Nike summer teams or Adidas summer teams that will play all the way through August. Both Nike and Adidas have sponsored youth tournaments in Las Vegas. Hundreds of kids as young as 12 showing their skills on the court, and 8)strutting their stuff on the 9)strip. At an age when the only mail most kids get is birthday party invitations, Tyson got 10)recruitment letters from 11)UCLA and Arizona and Syracuse. They wanted him for later, Nike already had him. Both companies also have their 12)hooks in high school basketball teams, all around the country. There are more than a hundred Nike high schools and a hundred Adidas high schools. They get free shoes, free uniforms and free equipment and often cash for the coach. In return Nike and Adidas get exposure, loyalty and a pipeline for promising players. More and more, the best teenage players are turning 13)pro right from high school.
Tyson’s mother is worried that things are moving to fast for her son.
Interviewer: Do you worry sometimes about what this is doing to your kid?
Mother: Yes, I do, I worry ‘cause I don’t want him to move too fast, I still want him to be a kid.
Interviewer: He is a kid.
Mother: Yeah, but a lot of people 14)overlook that because of his height.CE
1) dime [daim] n. （美）一角硬币
2) courtesy [5kE:tisi] n. 同意，默许
3) scour [5skauE] v. 来回搜寻
4) single [siNgl] v. 挑出，选出
5) bazaar [bE5zB:] n. 市场，集市
6) coral [5kCrEl] n. 珊瑚
7) billboard [5bilbC:d] n. 广告牌
8) strut [strQt] v. 大摇大摆地走，趾高气扬地走strut one’s stuff是俚语，意思是炫耀自己的相貌、穿戴或才艺。
9) strip [strip] n. 两旁商店、酒吧和餐厅等密集的街道
10) recruitment [ri5kru:tmEnt] n. 新成员的雇佣
11) hook [huk] n. 陷阱；钩
12) UCLA: University of California, Los Angeles加利福尼亚大学洛杉矶分校
13) pro [prEu] n. Professional的缩略语
14) overlook [5[uvEluk] v. 无视，忽视