CoCo Gauff: Millionaire at 14
It seems that it’s becoming a trend. Kids are getting younger and younger when signing their first professional contract. As a sports fan, we have seen this in the past. Usually within the world of basketball. Most of the greats that we know today (exception for Michael Jordan who came out of college) barely graduated high school before declaring for the draft. Look at Lebron, Kobe and many others that are/were in the league.
This situation is a little different. Coco Gauff has signed a multi-year deal with New Balance, an athletic sports wear and shoe company. No one has announced how much the contract is worth, but at the same time, it is a long term deal so we can only assume that New Balance is joining team Coco before she wins her first major. Currently ranked number 6 in the world in juniors and a junior grand slam champion, the youngest I might add, encourages people that there is something something special in this young talent.
This is an interesting time for New Balance to officially sign Ms. Gauff. Just recently New Balance has signed the "millionaire intern". Top college prospect, Darius Bazley signed a multi-millionaire deal that makes him one of the highest paid teen athletes out there. According to Sports Illustarted, "Bazley signed with agent Rich Paul and Klutch Sports and his playing plans changed. As part of Bazley's new multi-year contract with New Balance, he will now intern at company's marketing, digital, footwear and apparel departments from January to March. The deal will pay him at least $1 million and could reach $14 million if he hits performance incentives".
I like where New Balance is going with this. It does shift the balance of what talented athletes should do at a young age. Tennis, in particular, presents the professional route very early in a young girls career. That is probably why New Balance is signing to of the best young talented players on the market. What the future has in store for CoCo and Darius, we will just have to wait and see.