LaVar Ball rose to near-celebrity status rather quickly this year after his oldest son Lonzo emerged as the star point guard lifting UCLA back to basketball prominence. Ball used a big mouth and a genius marketing strategy to dominate headlines all year and now he’s taking his game up a level.
Deadline reported Monday that Ball and sons Lonzo, LiAngelo, and LaMelo will be the centerpieces in a new Facebook docuseries staring the talented family.
There has been a lot of criticism thrown at Ball for taking the focus off his son’s game and potentially ruining future business opportunities for his kids. Even if you don’t think he’s good for his son’s business futures or you don’t like him for his mouth, you can’t deny his marketing genius. Just a few months ago Ball was just a proud father living in southern California. Now he’s the head of his own brand – the BigBallersBrand – he’s dominating headlines, and even making appearances on WWE’s Raw.
Information about the Facebook series is still unknown, including the number of episodes and a potential starting date, but what is known is this will be one of two series Facebook is producing. Mike Rowe is starring in Returning to Favor which focuses on people who hold their community above themselves.
According the Deadline, Facebook’s push towards video has been a long time coming. The social media giant is testing out their new “Audience Direct” initiative that allows publishers to sell video ad space directly to advertisers. The system uses Facebook’s people-based advertising platform and the new docuseries, as far as Facebook’s concerned, is a good example of content that would perform well on this new platform.
“Our goal is to make Facebook a place where people can come together around video,” Nick Grudin, VP Media Partnerships, told Deadline. “To help get there, we’re supporting a small group of partners and creators as they experiment with the kinds of shows you can build a community around — from sports to comedy to reality to gaming.”
Lonzo Ball’s star quickly rose in his one year at UCLA and he was taken by the Lakers with the second pick in June’s NBA Draft. LiAngelo is now headed to UCLA to start his collegiate basketball career in the fall while LaMelo, ranked as a five-star recruit as a sophomore, still has a couple of years at Chino Hills High School before heading to Westwood to play for the Bruins. With all three sons staying in Los Angeles for at least another year the opportunities – marketing and otherwise – are endless.