Michael Jordan : biography
Most of Jordan’s endorsement deals, including the first deal with Nike, were engineered by his agent, David Falk.Powell, Shaun. , The Sporting News, March 29, 1999, available online at findarticles.com. Retrieved July 25, 2007. Jordan has said of Falk that "he’s the best at what he does", and that "marketing-wise, he’s great. He’s the one who came up with the concept of ‘Air Jordan.’", cigaraficionado.com. Retrieved June 22, 2007.
In June 2010, Jordan was ranked by Forbes Magazine as the 20th most powerful celebrity in the world with $55 million earned between June 2009 and June 2010. According to the Forbes article, Jordan Brand generates $1 billion in sales for Nike.. Forbes, 2010. Retrieved September 8, 2010.
Jordan was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Deloris (née Peoples), who worked in banking, and James R. Jordan, Sr., an equipment supervisor. His family moved to Wilmington, North Carolina, when he was a toddler. Jordan attended Emsley A. Laney High School in Wilmington, where he anchored his athletic career by playing baseball, football, and basketball. He tried out for the varsity basketball team during his sophomore year, but at 5’11" (1.80 m), he was deemed too short to play at that level. His taller friend, Harvest Leroy Smith, was the only sophomore to make the team.
Motivated to prove his worth, Jordan became the star of Laney’s junior varsity squad, and tallied several 40-point games. The following summer, he grew four inches (10 cm) and trained rigorously. Upon earning a spot on the varsity roster, Jordan averaged about 20 points per game over his final two seasons of high school play. As a senior, he was selected to the McDonald’s All-American Team after averaging a triple-double: 29.2 points, 11.6 rebounds, and 10.1 assists.
Jordan was recruited by numerous college basketball programs, including Duke, North Carolina, South Carolina, Syracuse, and Virginia.Halberstam, pgs. 67–68. In 1981, Jordan accepted a basketball scholarship to North Carolina, where he majored in cultural geography.LeFeber, Walter. . W. W. Norton, 2002. pg. 32. ISBN 978-0-3933-2369-6. Retrieved February 21, 2013. As a freshman in coach Dean Smith’s team-oriented system, he was named ACC Freshman of the Year after he averaged 13.4 points per game (ppg) on 53.4% shooting (field goal percentage). He made the game-winning jump shot in the 1982 NCAA Championship game against Georgetown, which was led by future NBA rival Patrick Ewing. Jordan later described this shot as the major turning point in his basketball career.qtd. in Lazenby, Roland. "Michaelangelo: Portrait of a Champion". Michael Jordan: The Ultimate Career Tribute. Bannockburn, IL: H&S Media, 1999. pg. 128. During his three seasons at North Carolina, he averaged 17.7 ppg on 54.0% shooting, and added 5.0 rebounds per game (rpg). He was selected by consensus to the NCAA All-American First Team in both his sophomore (1983) and junior (1984) seasons. After winning the Naismith and the Wooden College Player of the Year awards in 1984, Jordan left North Carolina one year before his scheduled graduation to enter the 1984 NBA Draft. The Chicago Bulls selected Jordan with the third overall pick, after Hakeem Olajuwon (Houston Rockets) and Sam Bowie (Portland Trail Blazers). Jordan returned to North Carolina to complete his degree in 1986.Morris, Mike. "The Legend: A Highlight-Reel History of the NBA’s Greatest Player". Michael Jordan: The Ultimate Career Tribute. Bannockburn, IL: H&S Media, 1999. pg. 67.
Jordan’s basketball talent was clear from his rookie season. In his first game in Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks, Jordan received a prolonged standing ovation, a rarity for an opposing player. After Jordan scored a playoff record 63 points against the Boston Celtics in 1986, Celtics star Larry Bird described him as "God disguised as Michael Jordan."