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Notre Dame Basketball

Blake Wesley Ready to Work in San Antonio

June 26, 2022
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Blake Wesley has been a popular name in South Bend for years and it started on the gridiron. The newest San Antonio Spur didn’t last long as a thumb injury quickly got him off the gridiron in eighth grade and it’s safe to say Wesley’s focus on hoops paid off. 

"I was skinny,” Wesley told reporters in San Antonio of his decision to quit football. “I was so skinny - skinnier than I am now. My mom was like, 'If you want to play football in high school, you can.' She wasn't confident in it, so I backed away from football and stuck to basketball." 

The 6-foot-5 guard will now take his talents to an organization built on hard work, which isn’t anything new to Wesley as his father and mother have pushed him on and off the court. 

"My mom was a cheerleader at IU and my dad played at Ball State,” explained Wesley. “My dad taught me the game and taught me a lot. He taught me to be a great all-around player - rebound, defend and just work hard." 

Hard work got Wesley to this point and it allowed him to have a moment on Thursday he won’t forget as he was selected with the 25th overall pick. 

"My heart was racing, if I'm being honest,” stated Wesley. “I don't know - it was a dream come true. To be part of the Spurs organization is good for me. I'm here to work, compete and get better." 

In his one collegiate season, Wesley averaged 14.4 ppg, 3.7 rpg and 2.4 assists per game, but his length and defensive presence have the Spurs excited. 

Wesley averaged 1.3 steals a night for Notre Dame and he credits his workouts over the last few years with South Bend native and Detroit Pistons guard Jaden Ivey for developing his defensive mentality. 

"Me and Jaden Ivey go way back,” Wesley said. “We grew up together just competing. We worked out together one time and our trainer was like, 'You're not competing hard enough.' 

"So we played one-on-one full court and picked up each other full court. We used to do that all the time. We just have that dog mentality. Ever since then, I've loved to play defense and love to impact the game." 

The South Bend native will be part of a three-man rookie class by the Spurs. San Antonio also drafted Baylor forward Jeremy Sochan (9th) and Ohio State guard Malaki Branham (20th). Wesley and Sochan were familiar with each other as the 6-foot-9 forward briefly played La Lumiere. Branham and Wesley worked out in San Antonio through the process, so all three already have started off on the right foot. 

“We all just turned 19,” said Wesley. “I remember last year you drafted Josh Primo and he's a young cat, so a lot of young people on this team. We have to learn a lot.

"It was my first time seeing Malaki (at the pre-draft workout). I had seen him play, but in a workout, it's crazy. He can get to a spot, shoot it and get to the rim. It was fun. We all competed at the end of the day and that's what I love." 

And while all three players will have to adjust to the NBA game, the San Antonio weather might be the biggest adjustment for Wesley. 

"It is hot,” laughed Wesley. “I don't really like the heat, but it is what it is. I'm from the Midwest, so I like the snow." 

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