VICE Magazine may have Dennis Rodman, but the Cal Golden Bears have Roger Moute a Bidias to delegate overseas — that’s right, folks, the sophomore will be leading a Pac-12 All-Star team to victory during a tour in China, Cal’s website recently announced.
And if fans overseas are enamored enough with the Ultimate Fan Experience, who knows; the Game of Basketball could legitimately take over Soccer as the world’s most popular sport by 2030.
But let’s retrace our steps here.
Moute a Bidias will be coached by Utah’s Larry Krystowiak, who had this to say about the Golden Bear: “I am thrilled for Roger to have the opportunity to represent the Cal Family on the Pac-12’s all-star tour … It will be great to see him compete against some of the top basketball programs in China and face former Bear Max Zhang. Roger will have a great educational experience.”
It should be considered a part of basketball’s ever-growing Globalization effort, a task begun with the introduction of the “Dream Team” in the 1990s in combination with David Stern’s global branding efforts. It continued throughout the aughts as the NBA helped to fund the designs of basketball arenas in Shanghai.
The worldwide appeal of basketball is growing ever greater, with top talents from the NBA pit-stopping in the CBA before announcing official retirement, and now with college players making a trip East.
In fact, Washington and Texas have both been given the dubious honor of becoming the first teams of any major U.S. sport to play a regular season game there, according to ESPN.
The Pac-12 has so far led the way in spreading the experience through collegiate athletes. The conference has already dispatched two men’s teams and and a delegation of men’s basketball coaches to the East for exhibition games and educational exercises.
And with the program still in its fledgeling stages, Cal should be proud to see Roger Moute a Bidias become an overseas All-Star. He leaves with the team on August 10th to start the four-game display and will return with the rest of the team shortly after Game 4 vs. Guangdong Southern Tigers.