Where are they now? – Part 1 of (approximately) 986 Derek Larson February 2, 2015 Features, Wildcat First Down Mondays at The Salute The less said about that game on Saturday, the better. Instead of banging my head against this keyboard in attempt to write an intelligent summary of K-State’s effort in Lawrence without forcing The Salute to hire a censor, I’m directing my focus toward former Wildcats. The last ten years have brought a variety of talented basketball players through Manhattan. Some were highly sought after recruits. Others served as surprises. Either way, today marks my first effort in utilizing my power (read: Google) to figure out where some of these Wildcats are playing today. Serge Afeli – 2005-2007 Current – Presbyterian College/Afeli Pharmaceuticals I’m cheating here. Serge is not, best I can tell, competing in basketball at a professional level. Instead, he’s taken that tried-and-true path from college basketball player to esteemed college professor. Wait. What? Yes, Dr. Afeli is currently teaching courses with names I cannot pronounce at Presbyterian College’s school of pharmacy. He has also founded a pharmaceutical company in South Carolina. Jim Wooldridge’s surprise recruit from the Ivory Coast never made a huge impact at K-State, but it’s safe to say that there’s life beyond college basketball. Weird. Ron Anderson Current – Westchester Knicks Anderson’s game at K-State depended much more on fundamentals and athleticism. Fundamentals didn’t always play in the Frank Martin system, though. Anderson transferred to South Florida after his sophomore season and is now averaging six points per game for the Westchester Knicks in the NBA D-League. Michael Beasley – 2007-2008 Current – Shanghai Sharks Beasley signed a non-guaranteed contract with Memphis Grizzlies prior to the start of the NBA season. He put the non in non-guaranteed just weeks later, when he requested a release from said contract so that he could sign with the Shanghai Sharks. You know about Beasley. The owner of the greatest statistical single season in K-State basketball lore, Beasley entered the NBA as the No. 2 pick in the 2008 draft. Unfortunately, controversy followed. Beasley never seemed to realize his full potential and drug-related legal troubles forced teams to grow less and less patient with him. Beasley was a member of last season’s NBA Eastern Conference Champion Miami Heat, however he did not play a minute in the NBA Finals. (where he teams with former NBA No. 1 draft pick Yao Ming), Beasley is averaging nearly 30 points and over 10 rebounds per game. He posted 59 points in an, admittedly defenseless, All Star game, earning the MVP honors Still just 26 years old, Beasley could very well return to the NBA in the future. Then again, Beasley could very well challenge a goat to a game of basketball on Mars and never be seen again. Denis Clemente – 2008-2010 Current – Pioneros The quickest player I’ve seen in purple, I can’t think of Clemente without seeing images of high-arching teardrop runners in the lane. Alas, now I can barely read about Clemente without investing in Rosetta Stone or paying a subscription fee for sites like latinbasket.com. A bit of digging shows that Clemente is averaging 12 points and 5 assists per game in Mexico, playing next to another guy you’ll read about in this series. Lance Harris – 2003-2007 Current Tofas SK The author of one of my favorite dunks ever, the occasional dead-eye sharpshooter has played world traveler in recent years. Harris has taken his game to Russia, Italy, Ukraine, Italy again, Greece (where he was twice the league’s dunk champion), and now Turkey. He’s currently averaging nearly eight points per game for Tofas SK, which is either a Turkish basketball club or a character in the new Star Wars movie. A doctor, a D-Leaguer, a draft flop-turned-Chinese all-star, and a couple of world travelers… That’s what you were expecting from this first attempt at tracking down former Wildcats, right? Whatever the case, attempting to translate Mexican news stories sure beats reliving games in Lawrence.