Trent Weaver is a 21 year old 203cm forward from Columbus, Ohio that will be starting his professional career in Europe in Germany with FC Schalke. He got an early taste of being a professional this year as he played for the Columbus Condors (CBA). Before turning professional he played for Ohio Dominican (NCAA2) from 2012-2016 playing atotal of 98 games. As a senior he played 28 games: 15.5ppg, 9.5rpg, 1.2apg, FGP: 52.4%, 3PT: 36.4%, FT: 72.5%. He spoke to German Hoops about basketball.
Trent thanks for talking to German Hoops. Where are you at the moment and how have you been enjoying your summer?
Thanks Miles, I am currently in my hometown Columbus, Ohio. So far this summer I have been preparing heavily to advance my game and body by a series of workouts and staying on top of the nutrition side of things. I have also been working to make a little money, and spending time with family before I leave for Europe.
Congrats on signing with German club FC Schalke. How thrilled are you to get your first chance to play overseas?
Thank you very much. I couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity. The team had great success last season and is moving up to Pro B. Coach Wilder is a great coach with much experience in winning and helping players advance their professional careers in Europe. It is a really great situation to start it.
Knowing that you are only the 125th player ever to have made the jump overseas from the CBA, does that tell you that you really have done something special?
Being just the 125th player from the CBA to play overseas is pretty exciting. It has taken a lot of hard work and dedication to get to this point, however I am not where I want to be yet. The CBA is a fantastic opportunity for American players to play against other current pros and possibly advance their careers.
What do you know in general about the country Germany and its basketball. Has long time Lich veteran Elijah Allen told you about the game and lifestyle in Germany?
I know that Germany is a very culture-rich country with outstanding basketball tradition throughout. After communicating with Elijah, he has provided me with some really key details about some differences and a little of what to expect when I make the trip over. He has been helpful and willing to give me great insight.
Are you a soccer fan? The FC Schalke team play in the Veltins arena that seats 62,000. Could you imagine spending time at games this season and learning the German sports culture?
I do enjoy soccer, and am learning more and more as its gets increasingly popular here in the United States. I am definitely very interested in understanding more about the game and the tradition of Schalke and Veltins Arena. Being open to new concepts and ideas is part of growing as a person.
How did the contact come to FC Schalke? Did ex FC Schalke player Brett Mcknight have anything to do with getting the contact?
My agent David Gonzalez and director Michael Stinnett of Free Agency Basketball were great throughout the entire process. They sent out film and put me in contact with Coach Wilder. Stinnett has developed a good relationship with Coach Wilder over the years. I really appreciated Wilder’s passion for excellence and experience with helping players advance. He was looking for a high character person and a specific type of player in Schalke. After discussing with Coach, we agreed that a deal would be a great fit in Schalke. Gelsenkirchen has great tradition and exciting fans as well. After talking briefly with Brett, he had many positive things to say about the lifestyle, fans, and differences within actual gameplay.
What was your first impression of head coach Raphael Wilder? Apparently you both spoke the same basketball language. If you look back at the long conversations over the last weeks, what part of the game did both of you agree or have the best connection with?
I could immediately tell how committed Coach Wilder is to doing things the right way. He has a lot of experience with winning and helping players get to the next step. After talking multiple times through email and phone, he made it clear what type of player he was looking for. A forward/center that is athletic, makes strong post moves, can shoot, and is smart. Also one with high character and a good teammate. He told me that I fit that mold. We came to the conclusion that we could help each other out with where we want to be.
You recently tore up the CBA league with the Columbus Condors and was as a 1st-team CBA All-Star, averaging 19.1 points per game, 56.6% field goal percentage, and a league-leading 13.2 rebounds per game in 10 games with Columbus during the regular season and postseason. Why did you decide to do this? You had a great senior season at Ohio Dominican (NCAA2). Did you want to heighten your self confidence?
The CBA is a great organization for American players. 2016 was Columbus’ inaugural season. A close family friend decided to start a franchise in the league and contacted me for a roster spot. Playing basketball at Ohio Dominican significantly helped me grow my and game and provided me with a backbone for what I wanted to do following graduation (play professional). The CBA started shortly after my college season was finished, and allowed me to play against great completion, along with staying in shape and learning FIBA rules.
After tearing up the NCAA 2 with Ohio Dominican (NCAA2) how did the CBA league help your game the last months develop post college?
The CBA helped me go against a variety of players and get adjusted to playing with players with international experience. Learning FIBA rules has also been beneficial through the CBA.
Let´s talk a little about your game. It is obvious that you can score and rebound the ball, but what do you believe is a hidden strength in your game that doesn´t get noticed right away?
I believe that smart decision making and running hard in transition are both assets to my game. Understanding your teammates tendencies is crucial for a team to be successful. I am also very capable of guarding bigger players than me in the post while also being able to guard smaller, quicker players on the parameter is also a strength.
You had many great games last season at Ohio Dominican (NCAA2) but was your combined points and rebounds of 56/28 in the wins against Tiffin your season highlights?
Those games were great team and individual performances. However, there were many games against great opponents where our entire team was playing well and together where we beat a couple ranked teams.
How did head coach Dan Evans groom and prepare you best for a professional basketball career in your last three years at Ohio Dominican (NCAA2)?
Coach Evans has played a huge role in helping me develop as a player, and most improbably a person. He really cares about his players best interest and respects them. He greatly encouraged me to go the extra mile on and off the court. Over the least three years, I have become a leader.
Who was the toughest player that you battled against in the NCAA 2 that made it to the NBA or to Europe?
I would said the two toughest players in NCAA 2 that I’ve went against have been Greg Kahlig from Findlay and Ali Haidar of Michigan Tech. These two players were outstanding in our conference and are having solid careers overseas. There are many great players from the GLIAC that have made it to Europe.
Who won a one on one in practice you or Alex Stevens?
Definitely myself. However, I will admit that Alex has made great strides as a player since stepping foot on campus. Great question.
How does a normal summer work out day look like for Trent Weaver on and off the court?
I am very committed to the weight room, so usually 5 times a week. I also try and get a variety of shots up just about every day. My personal trainer is putting me through drills 4-5 times a week that focus on aspects of my game that maybe aren’t considered strong points yet. I am also incorporating a series of stair and distance running workouts during the evenings. Staying committed to eating right and putting things in my body is key to performing.
If you had to construct your own personal Mount Rushmore with 4 NBA heads which would you choose?
That’s really, really challenging. There have been so many unique talents in the NBA. I would have to go Michael Jordan, Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem, and Lebron James. Some may argue at the last pick.
If Lebron loses the final again to the Golden State Warriors, how much will that tarnish his reputation of being a guy that can´t win the big games?
That would be rough on his legacy. However, I believe that he’ll get the job done.
There are a lot of great players from Columbus, Ohio but if you had to choose between Michael Redd, Samaki Walker and Herb Williams to join for dinner who would you choose?
Those are some great names, but I’m going with Redd. I watched him quite a bit when I was very younger at Ohio State and throughout is NBA career.
What was the last movie that you saw?
Deadpool. It was a lot better than I thought it would be.
Thanks Trent for the chat.