By: Cody Elliott, Staff Writer
Justin Kier will officially get an opportunity to play professional basketball.
The former Spotswood High standout, who most recently played his sixth year of NCAA eligibility at the University of Arizona and spent this past summer playing for Triple Threat in the Horizons Edge Adult Basketball League, was selected in the second round of the National Basketball Association’s G-League Draft on Saturday by the Austin Spurs — the G-League affiliate of the San Antonio Spurs.
Kier joined forces with several other former area standouts to help guide Triple Threat to the league championship at Horizons Edge earlier this month.
The 6-foot-4, 195-pound silky-smooth guard out of Grottoes has had an unconventional path to playing professionally after spending time with three different Division I programs throughout his college career.
As the first player in Spotswood program history to appear in four state tournaments, Kier signed with George Mason in November 2015 and became the city/county’s first boys basketball player in 25 years to sign a Division I scholarship while in high school — and the first ever for the Trailblazers.
Kier ranks in Spotswood’s top five in made free throws, wins, points, 3-pointers, free-throw shooting percentage, rebounds, and assists and also won multiple Valley District, Conference 29 and 3A West Region Player of the Year awards, plus multiple all-state honors throughout an illustrious career.
During four seasons with the Patriots, Kier played in 133 games and averaged 10.2 points and 4.8 rebounds per game. He also totaled 271 career assists while racking up 163 career steals.
In 2018-19, he earned second-team Atlantic-10 honors and was named the league’s Most Improved Player. After dealing with an injury, he then transferred to Georgia for the 2020-21 season.
After one season with the Bulldogs, however, Kier took advantage of an extra year of eligibility thanks to COVID-19 and headed west to play for the nationally-ranked Wildcats in the Pac-12. While there, he averaged 6.8 points, 3.3 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game and started in four postseason games.
He finished his college career with 1,610 points, 755 rebounds, 354 assists and 187 steals in 170 games.
Kier will begin his professional journey on Oct. 29 when the Austin Spurs host the Texas Legends.