Fans of the university with the most participants in the 2016 Olympics basketball tournament in Rio will get the chance to watch all of their alumni face off on Wednesday when Team USA takes on the Boomers of Australia in pool play.
That university, of course, would be WSU — Klay Thompson is playing for the Americans, while Aron Baynes and Brock Motum are representing the Aussies.
"I’m not that old," Thompson told Pac-12.com. "But, yeah, it’s crazy to think that it was eight years ago when I started and about six when I left. It’s wild and I couldn’t imagine being here. I’m here with two of my [WSU] teammates, Brock Motum and Aron Baynes. So, it’s going to be fun playing against them."
Tip off is at 3 p.m. PT, and you can watch the game live on NBCSN or via NBC’s streaming coverage of the games.
It’s the third game of the preliminaries for each team, which are each 2-0 and widely considered to be the two best teams in the group. The United States is a robust plus-101 in point differential after wins against China and Venezuela, while Australia is plus-36 after wins against Serbia and France.
Baynes has been a stalwart for the Boomers, starting both games and at power forward next to Andrew Bogut — forming a formidable front line — and averaging 12 points and 7.5 rebounds in 23.5 minutes.
Meanwhile, Thompson has played a fair amount but has struggled shooting the ball. He’s actually 0-for-7 from the shorter international 3-point line so far, and has made just one of his 11 overall shot attempts in 34 total minutes of action.
Motum has seen action in just one game so far, a token 1-minute appearance at the end of the victory over France.
The United States is heavily favored in this one, but the Australians feature four NBA players as starters who won’t be intimidated by the team across from them. Patty Mills has been a scoring machine in the Olympics, and this will be by far the toughest test of the games for the Americans.
Personally, I just hope Baynes, Thompson and Motum — who all were recruited by Tony Bennett* — somehow all end up on the floor at the same time.
* Sad face emoji