Sunday, December 4, 2011

HBD and the Intelligence of Jeremy Lin

Jeremy's parents are short and he is tall.  This is atypical, genetically speaking.  I don't know too many tall people who have short parents.  Maybe Jeremy had ancestors who were tall or his parents are short because they were malnourished. 

Jeremy went to Harvard because he was smart and going to Harvard made him a lot smarter.  But is this actually true?  To me, Jeremy doesn't seem very smart at all in his interviews.  He sounds like your typical dumb black basketball player.  Maybe he just spends too much time with dumb basketball players and has adopted their manners of speech.  Kobe Bryant sounds smart (and I think he is pretty smart too, probably in the top 0.1% of NBA players) while Jeremy Lin sounds stupid.  

Jeremy Lin is also an evangelical Christian and believes Jesus came back from the dead.  Some folks would claim that this is more evidence that supports Jeremy's non-smartness, but I don't think much can be made of his religious beliefs in relation to his intelligence.  One of the smartest people I know who actually went to college with Jeremy is an evangelical Christian.  

Jeremy's dad has a PhD in computer engineering from Purdue and worked in Silicon Valley, so Jeremy obviously has some smart genes.  But my suspicion is that Jeremy is not quite as smart as his father.  Regression to the mean.  

Jeremy only had a 3.1 GPA at Harvard and he majored in an easy subject, economics.  The average GPA at Harvard is around 3.5 so Jeremy was well below the mean.  But then again most Harvard students don't practice basketball three hours a day and also travel around the country to play games.  Perhaps his lack of academic success can be attributed to his commitment to basketball.  Or maybe he just wasn't very smart compared to the average Harvard student.  It's probably some of both, if you ask me.  

In conclusion, I estimate Jeremy Lin's IQ at around 115.  He probably scored around 1300 on the SAT.  I find it highly unlikely that he would have been admitted to Harvard without his basketball playing abilities.  In terms of intelligence, I think that Jeremy probably falls in the bottom 15% at Harvard.   

I like Jeremy Lin so don't take this assessment of him as evidence of me being against him somehow.  I just think that too many reporters and bloggers are falling all over themselves to worship Jeremy's Harvard smartness when in reality Jeremy only got into Harvard because he was good at basketball and is not that smart.  

People need to understand that going to Harvard (or any college, for that matter) does not make you smarter.  

1 comment:

  1. Well said, except that religious beliefs CAN infer a lot about the intelligence of an individual. You can infer that the person is illogical, irrational and delusional which are just 3 adjectives rarely, if never, used to describe intelligent indivuals. So yes there is a positive correlatiand beteen rationality and level of education/intelligence.

    By the way I am a huge fan of Jeremy Lins, being that I am an American Born Asian basketball player I can relate to the bigotry and persecution he has been through.

    I am just disappointed that he isn't the first intelligent American born Taiwanese player