REPORT: Sneaker Brands Could Offer LSU Star Ben Simmons More Than $100 Million For an Endorsement Deal

Nike has the inside track to signing LSU phenom Ben Simmons, but the price tag will be astronomical.

Ben Simmons

LSU freshman phenom Ben Simmons is widely expected to forgo the rest of his college eligibility and enter the 2016 NBA Draft, where he'll almost certainly be taken No. 1 overall. Simmons, who stands 6-foot-10 but possesses the handles and body movement of a guard, has already elicited comparisons to LeBron James, and his all-around game has scouts proclaiming him the next once-in-a-generation player to grace NBA courts.

That hype, whether exaggerated or not, has already stirred rumors that the major sneaker brands are loading up to get into a major bidding war to sign the Australian native. According to SNY.com, the number required to sign Simmons is already up over $100 million, as Nike, adidas and Under Armour all scramble to ink a pact with the next NBA superstar.

Nike is the front runner at this point. LSU is a Nike school, and Simmons has worn various colorways of the LeBron 13 throughout his freshman season. A few weeks ago, he shared a photo of a custom LSU-themed LeBron 13 on his Twitter account, as you can see above. Also, Simmons has frequently been spotted rocking a hat by TACKMA, a Cleveland brand worn consistently by LeBron James, and whose founder has close ties with Rich Paul, James's agent.

"adidas and Under Armour may throw a number out there, maybe more to push it up," Sonny Vaccaro, the man who brokered Michael Jordan's first deal with Nike, told SNY. "I would say maybe [$100 million] is not enough, because times have changed. We've seen $20 million-a-year contracts now, but they've been for established players."

Whoever ends up signing Simmons, it could be a historic contract in terms of its price tag.


Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock

Topics: ADIDAS | BASKETBALL TRAINING | NIKE | NEWS | UNDER ARMOUR