Kansas State senior forward Wesley Iwundu was selected with the No. 33 pick by the Orlando Magic in the 2017 NBA Draft presented by State Farm on Thursday night at the Barclays Center.
Iwundu is the first player to be drafted out of K-State since Michael Beasley (Miami Heat) and Bill Walker (Washington Wizards) were taken in the 2008 NBA Draft with the second and 47th selections, respectively. He is third-highest draft pick for the Wildcats in the Lottery era, following Beasley (No. 2) and Mitch Richmond (No. 5 in 1988). He is the sixth consecutive K-State player selected in either the first or second round dating back to 1987.
Overall, Iwundu is the 50th Wildcat selected in the NBA Draft dating back to 1947.
Iwundu becomes the first K-State player to ever be drafted as well as the first to play for the Orlando Magic. He was joined in the Magic draft class by Florida State’s Jonathan Isaac (No. 6), Latvia’s Anzejs Pasecniks (No. 25), California’s Ivan Rabb (No. 35).
“I couldn’t be happier for Wes and his family for realizing the dream of playing in the NBA,” said head coach Bruce Weber. “I’m so very proud of him for not only developing into an NBA caliber player, but also into a quality person off the basketball court. He made tremendous strides on the court and in the classroom during his time at K-State. Wes had a dream and he went after it. This is a proud moment for me and the coaching staff.”
Iwundu is the sixth draft pick developed by Weber in his head coaching career, joining former Illinois players Deron Williams (2005), Luther Head (2005), James Augustine (2006), Dee Brown (2006) and Meyers Leonard (2012).
Iwundu was the third of six Big 12 players selected in the draft, joining Kansas’ Josh Jackson (No. 4, Phoenix Suns), Texas’ Jarrett Allen (No. 22, Brooklyn Nets), Kansas’ Frank Mason III (No. 34, Sacramento Kings) and Oklahoma State’s Jawun Evans (No. 39, Philadelphia 76ers), Iowa State’s Monte Morris(No. 51, Denver Nuggets). It marks the second straight year that six Big 12 players went in the NBA Draft.
Iwundu developed into one of the top all-around players in school history, becoming the first Wildcat to record at least 1,000 points, 500 rebounds, 300 assists and 100 steals in a career as he finished with 1,249 points, 618 rebounds, 366 assists and 121 steals. He is one of six Wildcats to tally 1,200 points and 600 rebounds, joining Rolando Blackman, Bob Boozer, Thomas Gipson, Rodney McGruder and Ed Nealy. The school’s all-time starts leader, he finished his career in the Top 15 in seven career categories, including scoring (1,249/14th), rebounding (618/12th), assists (366/4th), steals (121/5th), minutes played (3,728/3rd), games (132/5th) and starts (124/1st).
Iwundu was the fourth college senior to be selected in the NBA Draft and one of just four taken in the draft’s two rounds, joining Colorado’s Derrick White, Villanova’s Josh Hart and Miami’s Davon Reed. He is the first four-year K-State player selected in the draft since Steve Hensonin 1990.
Iwundu is one of just six Wildcats in the Big 12 era to earn All-Big 12 First, Second or Third Team honors twice in a career, earning recognition to the Coaches’ Third Team in both 2016 and 2017.
In his 132-game career, Iwundu averaged 9.5 points on 46.3 percent shooting (425-of-917), including 33.8 percent (51-of-151) from 3-point range, with 4.7 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 0.9 steals in 28.2 minutes per game.
Iwundu saved his most productive season for his senior year in 2016-17, as he led the Wildcats in 15 categories, including scoring (13.0 ppg.), double-digit scoring games (26), field goals made (151), free throws made (122), free throw percentage (76.7), double-doubles (5) and rebounding (6.3 rpg.). He joined Mitch Richmond (1987-88) as the only Wildcats in school history to tally 400+ points, 200+ rebounds and 100+ assists in a single season.
Iwundu was the only Big 12 player to rank in the league’s Top 15 in scoring (15th), field goal percentage (10th), free throw percentage (11th), rebounding (9th) and assists (12th) in 2016-17, while he joined West Virginia’s Jevon Carter as the only Big 12 players to rank in the Top 15 in all 5 categories in league-only games.
For his senior season, Iwundu averaged 13.0 points on 48.1 percent shooting (151-of-314), including 37.6 percent (32-of-85) from 3-point range, with 6.3 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.0 steals in 31.4 minutes per game. In Big 12 play, he averaged 13.3 points on 47.8 percent shooting (77-of-161), including 40 percent (16-of-40) in 3-point range, with 7.6 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 1.2 steals in 33.5 minutes per game.
A Third Team All-Big 12 selection, Iwundu led the Wildcats in scoring a team-best 10 times, including a career-best 24 points in the NCAA First Four win over Wake Forest on March 14 – which was the school’s first NCAA Tournament victory since 2012. He averaged 21.5 points in NCAA Tournament action on 57.9 percent shooting (11-of-19), including 57.1 percent (4-of-7) from long range, with 5 rebounds and 5 assists in 31 minutes per game.