PULLMAN, Wash. – Former Washington State University men’s basketball student-athletes are representing the Cougars in professional leagues around the world, from the United States, to all over Europe, to Japan and down to New Zealand.
Thomas Abercrombie (Auckland, New Zealand) redshirted his freshman year at WSU, before averaging 1.2 points per game in 12 contests during the 2007-08 season. He has since returned home to New Zealand, where he plays for the Breakers, a team in the NBL (National Basketball League) of Australia. Through 6 games this season, Abercrombie is averaging 12.8 points and 2.5 rebounds per game as his team is 2-4. Last season for the Breakers he averaged 11.2 points and 4.6 rebounds in 32 games.
Aron Baynes (Cairns, Australia) appeared in two NCAA Tournaments and one National Invitation Tournament (NIT) during his four-year WSU career from 2005-06 to 2008-09. He is currently the school’s 25th best scorer having accumulated 1,064 points during his Cougar career. After playing overseas, Baynes signed with the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs Jan. 23, 2013, and is in his first full season with the team. In three games this season, Baynes is averaging 0.7 points and 1.7 rebounds in 7.3 minutes played per game. Over his Spurs’ career he’s averaging 2.4 points and 1.9 rebounds in 8.6 minutes an outing.
Fabian Boeke (Hamburg, Germany) appeared in just three games in a Cougar uniform, but was a two-year member of the team in 2007-08 and 2008-09, having battled injuries and NCAA eligibility rulings. Boeke currently plays for Rist Wedel in his native Germany in the German Pro B league. In three games this season he’s averaging 9.3 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.0 blocked shot a game. Last year in 26 games he finished with 13.7 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.7 blocked shots a game.
Marcus Capers (Winter Haven, Fla.) was a fan-favorite in four seasons in a Cougar uniform beginning with his freshman season in 2008-09 and concluding with his senior year, 2011-12. He finished his WSU career as the winningest student-athlete in school history and now plays professionally in Japan for Osaka Evessa of the Japan BJ League. Through 8 games this season, Capers is averaging 9.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 1.1 blocked shots.
Thomas Kelati (Walla Walla, Wash.) holds the 22nd spot on WSU’s all-time career scoring list after accumulating 1,081 points during his career starting with the 2001-02 season and ending in Dick Bennett’s second season as head coach, 2004-05. Kelati currently plays for Laboral Kutxa in Spain of Liga Endesa. Through three games, Kelati is averaging 1.0 point and 1.0 rebound per game. He played last season at Valencia Basket (Liga Endesa) where he averaged 10.6 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game, helping his team to the final and Supercup semifinals. A very experienced player overseas, he was voted Eurobasket.com All-European Championships Honorable Mention in 2011 and represented Poland at the European Championships in Slovenia earlier this year.
Abe Lodwick (Bend, Ore.) was a five-year member of the team at WSU, redshirting in 2007-08 and continually improving until his senior season in 2011-12. Lodwick is in his second season overseas, playing with Oberwart of Austrian’s A Bundesliga. In 5 games this season he’s averaging 13.2 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.8 steals per game. Last season with Phoenix Hagen in Germany he averaged 6.3 points and 3.1 rebounds per game.
Derrick Low (Honolulu, Hawaii) was one of the Cougars that helped lift the team to prominence during the 2006-07 season. The school’s 13th-best scoring with 1,288 career points, he began his career as a freshman during the 2004-05 season and played until his senior season in 2007-08, helping lead his team to two-straight NCAA Tournament appearances. This year Low is playing with Azovmash of the Ukraine Superleague after playing with Dnipro of Ukraine last season. This year Low is averaging 11.3 points and 10.0 assists through 3 games.
Brock Motum (Brisbane, Australia) is the most recent former WSU standout to go on and play professionally, currently a part of Granarolo BO of the Italian Serie A. Motum played four years at WSU, 2009-10 through 2012-13, where he compiled the fifth-most career points in school history with 1,530. This year with Granarolo BO, he’s averaging 9.5 points and 3.5 rebounds per game in his first four contests.
Taylor Rochestie (Santa Barbara, Calif.) was another Cougar who was popular within the community during his time at WSU. He redshirted during the 2005-06 season after transferring from Tulane, before starring for three seasons, beginning with 2006-07 and ending with 2008-09. He currently plays for Montepaschi of Italy in both the Italian Serie A and Euroleague. In four games of the Italian League he’s averaging 7.3 points and 3.3 assists per game in four contests, while in Euroleague he’s averaging 9.0 points and 2.0 assists in 3 games. Last season Rochestie played in three leagues in two different countries, including Angelico Biella in Italian Serie A and Laboral Kutxa Vitoria (Liga Endesa) in the Spanish League. In 2009-10 he played at BG Goettinggen (Pro A) in the German League and was voted to the Eurobasket.com All-German Budesliga Second team, while his team won the EuroChallenge Championship. He represented Montenegro at the qualifications for the European Championships last year.
Klay Thompson (Ladera Ranch, Calif.) is quickly becoming one of the biggest names to come though Washington State’s basketball program, after three seasons with the Cougars beginning in 2008-09 and ending with his junior season in 2010-11. He was the 11th overall pick of the 2011 NBA Draft by Golden State and is currently in his third season with the Warriors. Just five games into the 2013-14 season, Thompson is averaging 24.0 points, 3.2 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game. In just over two seasons, he’s averaging 15.1 points, 3.2 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 30.8 minutes per game. For his career he’s shooting .415 (341-828) from 3-point range and .852 (224-263) from the free throw line.
Kyle Weaver (Beloit, Wis.) was another member of the record setting Cougar teams that notched 26 wins twice, both in 2006-07 and 2007-08, tying the school record. He started in 2004-05 and was a senior on the squad that reached the 2008 NCAA Tournament ‘Sweet Sixteen’. Weaver was selected as the 38th overall pick of the 2008 NBA Draft by the Charlotte Bobcats and went on to play for the Oklahoma City Thunder, Utah Jazz and Memphis Grizzlies. He also played in the D-League, most recently for the Canton Charge. This season he’s with Napoli Basket of Italian DNA Gold. In six games he’s averaging 14.8 points, 5.7 rebounds and 2.8 assists each game.
The 2013-14 Cougars open up their season this Friday, Nov. 8 at 7 p.m. against CSU Bakersfield, also at Beasley Coliseum. That game can also be seen on the Pac-12 Networks.