James Watson has played his final basketball game in a Kansas State uniform, and possibly ever.
The Washington State and Cowley College transfer was told by athletic department officials on Friday that he won’t be retained by new coach Bruce Weber.
According to Watson’s mother, Annette, the decision was based on health concerns. She said Watson has a heart defect that causes him to faint. He began suffering from the problem at Washington State and experienced a scary moment last season when he fainted in his Manhattan apartment and missed a practice.
Because of that health concern, and other injuries, Watson played sparingly during his first season with the Wildcats. The 6-foot-8 junior forward saw time in one game and was held scoreless. He was hoping to contribute as a senior, and was practicing well with Weber in offseason workouts, but that is no longer a possibility.
“Coach Weber had made the decision that James won’t be part of the team anymore,” Annette said by phone. “He thought he had too big of a health risk. James is broken-hearted. He called me the other day and said, ‘I can’t see my life without basketball.’”