CANADIANS PLAYING IN THE NCAA DIV I 2012/13
After a very exciting summer in Canada for basketball, many of our young and talented athletes will begin or continue to play collegiately in the NCAA Division I. With Canadians making a big splash last year during the March Madness Tournament, it isn’t surprising to see many Canadians competing in top programs across the United States.
The men’s side will boast over 70 Canadian athletes (approximately) playing this season. Common names will take to the court such as Kevin Pangos, entering his sophomore year at Gonzaga, Brady Heslip, entering his junior season at Baylor and Myck Kabongo, entering his sophomore season at Texas.
This year, 28 Canadian male student-athletes will enter their freshman season including highly touted recruits like Anthony Bennett (ranked no. 7 recruit by ESPN). Bennett will play alongside Khem Birch at UNLV, Nick Stauskas playing for the Michigan Wolverines and Stefan Jankovic and Negus Webster-Chan who will both begin their collegiate careers with the Missouri Tigers.
Two members of the junior men’s national team will also make jump to the NCAA this coming season; Braxton Bunce (Cornell) and Kaza Keane (Illinois).
Last year in the NCAA March Madness men’s tournament, Canada had 31 Canadians on school rosters that made the tournament and 28 who were active to play, including Canadian, Kyle Wiltjer who was on the national championship team, Kentucky.
On the women’s side, Canada will have over 80 Canadian women playing in the NCAA this coming season. Notables are senior women’s national team members Natalie Achonwa , who will enter her junior season with Notre Dame, and Michelle Plouffe, also entering her junior season with Utah.
There will be four players on the junior women’s national team that will begin their collegiate careers this coming season; Taijah Campbell (Virginia Tech), Paige Crozon (Utah), Ruth Hamblin (Oregon State) and Kaili Lukan (Wisconsin-Green Bay).
In last year’s NCAA March Madness women’s tournament, 9 Canadians were on school rosters that made the tournament with 8 of them being active. Natalie Achonwa reached the finals for the second time in a row, but Notre Dame was unable to defeat Baylor.
For the list of Canadian men in the NCAA, click here.
For the list of Canadian women in the NCAA, click here.
It seems like it will be an exciting season ahead for many of the Canadians in the NCAA.