The Weber St. Wildcats have a hot prospect among their alums for the first time since Justus Thigpen in 1969. G Damian Lillard is projected to go to the Portland Trail Blazers with the No. 11 pick in the upcoming NBA Draft, and the Oakland native is on top for a first time.
A recent article from Sports Illustrated's Sam Amick profiled the 21-year-old, who survived a mugging in high school and managed to bolt to the top of many draft boards despite playing for a mid-major school. According to Lillard, his California roots helped him in that pursuit:
"Oakland breeds toughness, and guys who don't back down and will guard whoever," Lillard said. "So I definitely want to hold that standard so people see that I'm an Oakland guard. I've got that same fire to me as those other guards, and hopefully I'll prove myself."
The 2012 NBA Draft begins June 28.