Here is the second part of my look at former Baylor basketball players who have gone on to ball for a living (the one that covers leagues that aren't the NBA). With a few notable exceptions at the end, I am only touching on players who are currently playing. I apologize if this is a bit drier than the first part, but there are a lot of Bears playing basketball for a living around the world. So prepare your face, because I'm about to throw some knowledge at it.
Odyssey Sims finds herself in Tulsa playing alongside Skylar Diggins and Glory Johnson. I don’t have much to say since they’re only 7 games into the season, but she seems to be doing as well as we would all expect. She’s getting 25 minutes per game right out of the gate, and ought to get named Rookie of the Year as long as she does Odyssey Sims things.
Brittney Griner is in her second year in Phoenix, and is currently the second highest scorer and leading rebounder for the team, because of course she is. She’s also averaging nearly 4 blocks a game because taking a shot against Brittney Griner is a lot like going to TCU: hopeless and sure to end in tragedy for you and those you love. She’s showing improvement over last year so far in all areas of her game and I expect that this time next year she will have fully ascended to a level of dominance akin to what she showed at Baylor.
And since we had a dunking gif in the previous post, it seems only fair that I share this with you. This was Brittney's second dunk in her very first game in the WNBA:
Sophia Young-Malcolm is returning this year after tearing her ACL before the season while playing in China last year. Sophia has been a very good player since being drafted in 2006 and was one of the Stars’ main weapons. Her production has lessened considerably since her return this season, but that could be due mostly to working herself back into playing form after her injury. As all Baylor fans know, coming back from an ACL tear is not fun. Assuming she does, however, she should still have some very good years of basketball ahead of her.
Pro Basketball Abroad
Since there are quite a few bears flinging their green and gold afar overseas, I’ll try to keep my commentary on them brief. Stats and roster info for this section come mainly from basketball.eurobasket.com and basketball.usbasket.com.
Curtis Jerrells is currently playing reserve point guard for EA7 Emporio Armani Milano in the Italian league after a brief stint in the NBA D-League last year. He has become a much more efficient shooter since leaving Baylor and while it’s looking like we may not see him in the NBA again, he will have a very good career in Europe. He helped lead Milan to the Euroleague quarterfinals this year and as of Monday, he has led them to the Italian league Finals.
Kevin Rogers played for the Erie Bay Hawks this past season in the D-League, although he has apparently since left the team. He has played in Greece and South America and should be able to keep getting solid spots on foreign teams for as long as he wants to play basketball.
LaceDarius Dunn is the starting shooting guard for Polish team AZS Koszalin averaging a team leading 15.7 points. He has also played in Portugal and Israel. He seems to be doing quite well overseas, and while making an NBA debut is not out of the question, I imagine he’s getting paid better in Europe than he would be over here.
Tweety Carter is playing as a backup point guard for ASVEL Basket, a French team. He had a brief stint in the D-League before playing with various European teams. He has been a solid player for every team he has played on. Like Jerrells and Dugat, it is unlikely at this point that we'll ever see him in the NBA, but he should be a starter on most Euroleague teams.
Anthony Jones is the starting center for Columbian team Once Caldas de Manizales, averaging almost a double-double a game with 16.4 points per game and 9.4 rebounds. No word on how many sandwiches a day he is averaging, but hopefully it’s enough to keep him from withering away.
Pierre Jackson is playing as a backup point guard for Turkish team Fenerbahce Ulker Istanbul. He has not had enough time with the team to have earned many minutes or achieve meaningful stats. It’s a shame that the Sixers traded him after drafting him since he would definitely have seen NBA court time with the Sixers, and the Pelicans are presently overloaded with guards. Despite a stellar D-League run, I expect him to remain in Europe until the Pelicans trade his rights to someone else or their rights to him run out. He is probably the most likely candidate on this list to make a successful run at the NBA in the future.
A.J. Walton already has work as the starting point guard for Asseco-Gdynia, a Polish team. He is currently the best player on the team statistically, averaging 14.9 points, 5.5 assists, and 5.3 rebounds after 36 games played. I’m not going to lie, I was a bit surprised that he immediately started killing it overseas, but I’m happy to see him put in a good situation.
J`mison Morgan recently signed as a forward for Soyuzbasketugol Shahtarsk, a Ukrainian team. He has not played any games with them yet.
Rachel Allison is starting for Rivas Ecopolis in Spain currently. She has been playing in Australia and Spain since graduating and appears to be doing quite well as a major contributor to a winning team.
Jordan Madden is the starting point guard for Residence, a team in Luxembourg. She is far and away the star of the team averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds a game. With only 12 teams in the WNBA it’s hard to know whether or not she’ll get another shot at playing here, but she seems to be making a good case for herself.
Bernice Mosby just recently joined Quinta Dos Lombos in Portugal and is already making an impact in just 5 games. She is their best bench player statistically and may move into the starting rotation once she has had more reps with the team.
Jhasmin Player is apparently on a mission to burn Portugal down through the medium of basketball. She is averaging—AVERAGING—39.5 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists and 4 steals per game as the starting point guard for Clube Uniao Sportiva in 21 games so far this season. Those numbers are full of madness. If she keeps going like this there’s no telling where she’ll end up after Portugal bans her from the country for BALLING TOO HARD.
Brooklyn Pope is the starting power forward for French team Limoges ABC en Limousin and averaging 11 points and 11 rebounds a game.
Destiny Williams has left Romanian team ICIM Arad and apparently has not signed with another team yet. I assume she left because ICIM Arad lost too much for her Kim-Mulkey-trained tastes (they lost a single game last year).
Danielle Wilson is the starting center for Riviera Gdynia averaging 13.5 points per game and 9.5 rebounds. Significantly, this is the only team with a Lady Bear on it that is currently sub-.500. I am beginning to suspect that if you want to win all the things for the rest of your life, then you need to get coached by Kim Mulkey for a couple of years. Because all these girls do is win.
On To the Next
These four players were always near and dear to my heart when I was a student and so I want to give updates on them even though they don’t play God’s Own Sport anymore.
Aaron Bruce is no longer playing pro ball in Australia. He has moved on to conquer the world of medical business after retiring from basketball last year. No doubt he is stacking paper to the ceiling.
Josh Lomers had a brief stint in the D-League before deciding that the world needed his Lomerjacking skills in other arenas. Specifically in the arena of HR management.
Mamadou Diene continues to flourish in his lifetime position as Mayor of Waco. Long live the Mayor!
Kendall Wright is—well, you know what he’s doing. This is just a reminder that he was on the basketball team too for a glorious minute.