Klay Thompson is the most notable player from Washington State University. Thompson spent three years with the Cougars before getting selected 11th overall by the Golden State Warriors in the 2011 draft.
Thompson is also the most successful player in Washington State history. He's a four-time NBA champion and five-time All-Star. He's also considered one of the greatest shooters in basketball history.
WSU retired his No.1 jersey in 2020. Thompson is just the second basketball player and the seventh athlete to receive the honor. Even though the Cougars are not known for their basketball program, they have produced solid NBA players over the years.
Notable players from Klay Thompson's college Washington State University
5. Malachi Flynn
Malachi Flynn spent the first two years of his collegiate career with Washington State. Flynn averaged 15.8 points, 3.4 rebounds and 4.3 assists in his sophomore season before transferring to San Diego State University.
The 24-year-old guard was selected 29th overall by the Toronto Raptors in the 2020 NBA Draft. Towards the end of the 2020-21 season, Flynn was named Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month for April.
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4. Gene Conley
Before Klay Thompson became the all-time leader in NBA championships won by a WSU alumni, the record was owned by Gene Conley. He was a two-sport star who played basketball and baseball professionally. He won three championships with the Boston Celtics from 1959 to 1961.
Conley was also a pitcher with an overall record of 91 wins and 96 losses with a 3.82 ERA. He's a four-time MLB All-Star and one-time World Series champion. He's one of only two athletes to win championships in at least two of the four major American sports.
3. Aron Baynes
Aron Baynes played for Washington State way before Klay Thompson arrived. Baynes suited up for the Cougars from 2005 to 2009. He went undrafted in 2009, but had a solid career in the NBA. Before playing in the league, he spent four seasons overseas playing for four different teams.
Baynes was part of the 2014 San Antonio Spurs championship team. He also played for the Detroit Pistons, Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors and Phoenix Suns. He now plays for the Brisbane Bullets in Australia's NBL.
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2. James Donaldson
James Donaldson was a standout for WSU from 1975 to 1979. Donaldson entered the NBA draft in 1979 and was selected in the fourth round by the Seattle SuperSonics. He had a 15-year NBA career and was named an All-Star in 1988 as a member of the Dallas Mavericks.
Donaldson also ran for Mayor of Seattle in 2009 but lost. For his contributions to Washington State, he was inducted into the university's athletics hall of fame in 2006.
1. Craig Ehlo
Craig Ehlo was famously known for defending Michael Jordan in "The Shot" back in 1989. However, Ehlo had a really good NBA career and was a product of Washington State. He spent two years at WSU before entering the 1983 NBA draft.
Ehlo played for 14 seasons in the NBA, the second-most by a Washington State player. His best year in the league was in 1990 when he averaged 13.6 points, 5.4 rebounds and 4.6 assists for the Cleveland Cavaliers.
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