Whiteville’s Shaun Kirk became the first UNC-Pembroke basketball program player to be drafted by the Harlem Globetrotters Monday. The Globetrotters 2020 “draft” in addition to Kirk include Mookie Betts of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and internet sensation Sister Margaret Ann among others.
Kirk played a key role in UNC Pembroke’s 2019-20 Peach Belt regular season title. He averaged 7.3 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.1 assists in 13.6 minutes per game. Kirk also contributed several high-flying dunks that brought patrons out of their seats. Kirk’s “hops” were certainly a factor in his being drafted by the Globetrotters.
Starting in 2007, the Globetrotters have conducted an annual “draft” a few days before the NBA draft in which they select players they feel fit the mold of a Globetrotter. Being drafted by the Globetrotters does not guarantee a spot on the team, although several drafted players have gone on to become Globetrotters. Those drafted players currently on the roster are “Sweet Lou Dunbar II (2018), Money Merriweather (2017), Hawk Anderson (2013), Thunder Law (2013), and Bull Bullard (2008). A total of 18 drafted players have gone on to play for the Globetrotters.
Other notable celebrity draft picks by the Globetrotters through the years include Lionel Messi (2011) Usain Bolt (2012), Mariano Rivera (2013), Brittney Griner (2013), Johnny Manziel (2014), Landon Donovan (2014), Mo’ne Davis (2015), Dude Perfect (2015), Neymar (2016), Missy Franklin (2016), Jordan Spieth (2016), Craig Sager (2016), Gal Gadot(2017), Aaron Judge (2017) and Tim Tebow (2017).