As Chairman and Managing Director of the USA Men’s Basketball Team, Colangelo recruited and architected an all-star powerhouse team that restored the United States’ reputation on the international basketball landscape. He was the driving force behind the Senior Men’s National Team winning the Gold Medal at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing and successfully defended the gold in the 2012 London Olympic Games.
In a NY Times interview, Jerry described his journey into USA Basketball:
Q. How did you originally become involved with USA Basketball?
A. “It was a great opportunity to serve, and it came at a most appropriate time for me. I had sold the Suns, let go of the Diamondback and fought prostate cancer. So it was kind of a watershed moment. When I was at home recuperating, David Stern asked me if I wanted to take over USA Basketball. It was a quick decision on my part because I needed a shot.”
In the broad spectrum of NBA ownership, it is difficult to imagine anyone else who could convince millionaire athletes that there is something larger than themselves, an intangible reward beyond the scope of the standard contract…REPRESENTING THEIR COUNTRY.