An era in Pepperdine University basketball ended when the Waves’ three best players participated in their last games in Malibu in the recently-completed season.
Now Alex Acker, Glen McGowan and Yakhouba Diawara are moving on.
Acker moved to the top of the list when the 6-foot-5 guard was selected in the NBA draft. Acker, who had a year of eligibility remaining at Pepperdine, was the No. 60 pick — the last player to be chosen — but appears to be in a good situation. He was drafted by the Detroit Pistons, the NBA champions two seasons ago and a playoff finalist this season.
In a phone conversation with Acker following the draft, Pistons’ coach Larry Brown indicated the selection wasn’t a wild stab.
“He told me not to worry about anything,’’ said Acker. “He said you’re here for a reason. We like what you bring to the table.’’
Among other things, the Pistons know Acker won’t show up with an attitude problem. Besides being able to play both guard positions and small forward, Acker has a reputation of being a high-character person. In basketball terms, he’s extremely coachable.
McGowan, a 6-foot-9 forward, wasn’t drafted but is well-known to NBA teams. He had some superb games for the Waves, including scoring 36 points in a game at Maryland.
McGowan has been invited to play for a San Antonio Spurs summer league team.
Diawara is currently playing for the French national team and his future is likely to be in Europe. However, he has been asked to play for a Phoenix Suns summer league team in Las Vegas.It will be a challenge for Pepperdine coach Paul Westphal to field a contending team next season without the three players.