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North Carolina Rumors

Saturday’s Lakers-Pelicans NBA regular season game averaged a 0.65 rating and 1.22 million viewers on ESPN2, the least-watched game involving LeBron James on ESPN/ABC or TNT this season. It was the first NBA regular season game to air on ESPN2 since Jazz-Lakers in 2016, Kobe Bryant’s famed 60-point career finale (3.5M). Excluding NFL simulcasts, the Lakers’ loss was the most-watched ESPN2 program since the Mississippi State-Illinois Outback Bowl on January 2 (2.18M). It was a late addition to the national TV schedule due to James’ pursuit of the NBA’s all-time scoring record and aired on ESPN2 because ESPN was occupied with North Carolina-Duke (1.4, 2.86M).
Former Baylor forward Matthew Mayer told Adam Zagoria of Zags Blog that he will withdraw from the 2022 NBA draft and transfer to a different program for next season. Mayer, who has one year of eligibility remaining, declared for the draft on April 22 with the option to return to school. He then opted to enter the transfer portal and has heard from programs like Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois and North Carolina among others.

Golf: JR Smith named North Carolina A&T's Academic Athlete of the Year

Two-time NBA champion J.R. Smith has transitioned from the court to the golf course and classroom effortlessly. The former sixth man of the year was named North Carolina A&T’s Academic Athlete of the Year with a 4.0 GPA on Monday. Smith, 36, enrolled at North Carolina A&T on Aug. 11, pursuing a degree in liberal studies with the intention of joining the golf team while awaiting a decision from the NCAA regarding his eligibility. On Aug. 24, just a day after starting classes, he was cleared to play golf for the Aggies.
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The news comes a week after apparel brand Lululemon signed Smith to be its golf ambassador through a name, image and likeness deal. The athlete known to hoops fans as “JR Swish” is the first male golfer to sign a brand ambassador deal with Lululemon. In January, Smith signed with Excel Sports Management for NIL representation. At the time, Smith’s agent, Lance Young, told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski that there was high interest from golf apparel and equipment manufacturers in sponsoring the enormously popular (6.2 million followers on Instagram alone) college athlete.