SPORTS PEOPLE

LeBron's new ride raises eyebrows


Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary basketball star LeBron James, right, gets into a new Hummer outside Warrensville Heights High School Saturday. Where did LeBron James get the SUV? The high school sensation is driving a Hummer, a popular sports utility vehicle, his mother reportedly gave him for his 18th birthday. Now high school officials are concerned James may have broken eligibility rules.

AP Photo/Michael Lilly
Published: Monday, January 13, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 13, 2003 at 1:06 a.m.

CLEVELAND - LeBron James is traveling like a professional player these days. And not just on the court.

James, the nation's most hyped player and expected No. 1 pick in this year's NBA draft, is driving a Hummer H2, a sports utility vehicle popular with many pro athletes, around Akron.

James' ride - with a base retail price of nearly $50,000 - has state high school officials wondering if the 18-year-old has jeopardized his amateur standing.

``We have some concerns,'' said Clair Muscaro, commissioner of the Ohio High School Athletic Association. ``The thing I'm concerned about is that it was gift from the outside. When our schools see something like that, it throws up a red flag. It's different than a parent buying their son or daughter a small vehicle.''

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported that James, a senior at Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary High School, was given the vehicle as an 18th birthday present by his mother, Gloria.

The SUV is outfitted with three televisions and a hookup for computer games. Gloria James obtained a bank loan to finance the purchase, the paper said quoting anonymous sources close to the team.

Gloria James declined to comment Sunday after her son scored 30 points to lead the top-ranked Fighting Irish to a 76-41 win over 18th-ranked Detroit Redford at the Cleveland Convocation Center.

``I've got nothing to say about that,'' she said.

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