June 8, 2009
Santa Clara, Calif. - Santa Clara's Brody Angley '08 spent the last year playing basketball overseas in Switzerland. Angley, a first-team All-WCC point guard in 2007-08, averaged 11.5 ppg, 4.8 apg and 4.1 rpg his senior year with the Broncos. Back in town, Angley talked late last week about some of his favorite Bronco memories, including some of his road nicknames, how he liked playing in Switzerland and what he wants to do next.
Welcome back Brody!
SCU: Just to update the fans, you graduated from Santa Clara in 2008 with a degree in Economics. Why Economics?
Angley: I enjoyed Economics. It was in Arts and Sciences. I found the other classes a lot more interesting on that side. Economics is broad - it applies to everything from finance to management, and in the future I feel like that will open more doors for me when I try to get a job later.
SCU: A little trip down memory lane. Favorite Bronco memory?
Angley: Favorite Bronco memory on the court was when we beat North Carolina my freshman year. It was the year they won the NCAA title.
Another would be breaking Gonzaga's 50-game winning streak on the road in the Kennel. Every time you go up there, their whole student section was there an hour before the game and they were just all over you. I was called a Hobbit and Harry Potter. Mitch was called Doug Funny. They are just all over you. They would get information on you. I don't know if it was a guy that knew me because I didn't really talk about my sister in my profile, but those guys are unleashing, "How's your sister doing? We went out on a date. I took her out on a date to Outback. Let me know. I want to hear some feed back." I think my sophomore year we walked in, and they had a huge picture of Travis Niesen on this surfboard with flaming rainbow colored hair. It's just fun.
Another was my junior year when we went to Missouri State for a tournament, and we had a 24-hour trip to get there. We got up at six in the morning. Then we had a layover in Colorado so we were stuck in the Colorado airport for 10 hours. Then we flew into Kansas City and had to drive to Springfield. We were driving through snow and our huge bus was sliding on the ice, and there were snowplow trucks on the side of the road just stuck in the snow.
The Hawaii trip was great. The only reason we lost that was because we went and ran on the beach a couple of days before because we were there for four days.
Off the court, intramural softball in the spring would have to be my favorite. Mitch (Henke) and I lived with 12 other guys at a place called Portola (the houses at Santa Clara have nicknames). It seemed like we always had basketball so it was fun to get away and go play in the softball games. We would just go out there, play softball and hang out with our roommates that we didn't get to see very much. It was just fun to get away for a bit and hang out with those guys.
SCU: The day you graduated from Santa Clara, where did you think you were headed? Did you know you were going to Europe?
Angley: I had it in my mind I would play basketball, but I had no clue where. I had a great time, great experience. I just wish we would have won a few more games.
SCU: What was your team's record this year?
Angley: I think we were 4-16. We weren't on the winning side that much.
SCU: What's on of the highlights from this past season for you on the court?
Angley: Winning those four games (smiles). We got better as the season went on. The last five games were decided by less than six points. Obviously, there isn't too many highlights when you are on a losing team, but I was with good people. The coach was great and I was well taken care of. I have nothing to complain about to be honest. I had three of my teammates here last week, and we were in the city hanging out. I hadn't seen them in two months and it seemed like no time had passed. They speak Italian, so we basically communicated mostly through hand signals, but the message was getting across. I learned enough Italian to have basic conversation skills. I could go to the grocery store without a problem and order at restaurants.
SCU: How well does Switzerland support basketball?
Angley: We had a good community in Lugano. It wasn't a huge stadium, it's not big like soccer. Lugano is a hockey town. After our games, my coach would sometimes hurry out because the hockey game was starting. I don't know if that's really true, but the guys on the team were always joking about it because he's such a big fan of the hockey team there. It was really kind of a weird set up. We had sideline bleachers 10 or 11 rows high, and then on one baseline we had the same thing, and on the other sideline were the benches and behind the other there was a bar. When you are shooting free throws and you look up and a guy is throwing back a cold one, you are like "wow". It's just a different culture, but it was a lot of fun.
SCU: What other countries did you visit outside of Switzerland?
Angley: I was in Italy and Germany. I went to Ulm to visit one of my American teammate's friends, Dan Fitzgerald, who was playing in Ulm. So I visited him when we had a free day and we checked out Munich, which was a lot of fun. It was nice to see different cultures. I went on the Autobahn. I had this little car (the C-tron C1), which is smaller than a Mini-Cooper (but larger than a Smart Car). It had four doors, too. So my teammate, who is 6'10" and myself are on the Autobahn in this car, and I'm in the slow lane going 124 miles per hour and I'm getting passed. I've got both hands at 10:00 and 2:00 on the wheel and trying to concentrate, and when I would come up behind a trailer I would inch over and then inch back.
I was in northern Italy quite a bit. We scrimmaged some Division II Italian teams in Bologna and Chorizo and I went to Milan quite a few times. My sister came and visited once and so did one of my best childhood friends. He came to visit right before Christmas. The last week I was there, my teammate Chris from Marquette and I went to Rome, Florence, and Venice. I have a high school football friend of mine that timed it perfectly so he got to go on that trip with us as well. I didn't get to travel as much as I would have liked. Just being in Europe for the first year was enough. I was content.
SCU: Mitch Henke came to visit you and you saw Crystal Matich and Anna Cmaylo?
Angley: Jeff was over there visiting Crystal and my sister came over with us to visit.
SCU: What's the best and worst parts about playing over there? What are some things that you are never going to forget?
Angley: Switzerland in general, they are neutral in everything and avoid confrontation. You can tell the difference too. People were really welcoming and the food was unbelievable. Basketball was huge there but if they recognized you they would say hello and ask you how you were doing.
SCU: So, what's next?
Angley: I am content with wherever I go. I just want to experience new things, and I'm trying to be open to possibilities. I would like to try to play in a stronger league if I can, where the competition is a little bit tougher. The Swiss League is a good league, but it's not like a German or French league.
SCU: Take us through a typical week in Switzerland.
Angley: We would have one game a week on either Saturday or Sunday. If we had a game Sunday, our day off would be Wednesday. The Americans were mandated to shoot every day at 10:30, and I would try to get up before to go to yoga. After shooting, we had lunch and I would go back to the gym to do cardio and swimming, or I would do cardio and swimming right before practice. We would practice at 6:00 or 7:00 at night, but we would only practice for about two hours. Then we would go out to dinner and then home to go on the internet for a little bit and then go to bed.
SCU: Where did you start doing yoga?
Angley: I did a little bit of yoga here. Elyse Shelger, who played women's soccer here, got us into doing Bikram yoga. We did like three days of that and I didn't like it. But I was over there trying to expand some things so I dabbled in it. What was funny was we would go in there, and they knew we were American and that we played on the team so afterward they would say hello or "good game". It was fun.
We had free memberships at a wellness center there, and they had this Roman spa, which was kind of different for me because it was male and female. The first time I walked in there, everyone was pretty old and I walk in there with a bathing suit on and some people are naked and some people aren't. Things like that were definitely a culture shock.
Sometime we'd go out in the middle of the day, and they were like "let's have a beer." Or you go downtown and everyone is older, but they would be outside on the patio having a cappuccino or a beer. It's so relaxed and it's fun to be around. That's what I liked most about the Italian culture.
The only bad part would be not winning. I would Skype with Coach Keating and it was funny because he had his honeymoon there. We would talk about the roundabouts. I maybe saw two or three stop signs, everything is a yield. I don't understand the signs so I just kind of went with it.
SCU: Since you've been back have you played with any of the current Bronco players?
Angley: I came back for the tailgate and San Francisco Giants game, and while I was here I played pick up one day. I liked what I saw.
Angley: I think he's phenomenal. From what I've been hearing from the coaches he's got the right mindset and the skills obviously. He's already proven that. He's definitely got all the tools and pieces to turn this into something great. Not a lot of people do what he did as a freshman. Not a lot of people do what he did in their careers. If he builds upon that and stays committed to what he's been doing then the sky is the limit. I only hope him the best. It will be fun to watch.
Now that I'm out of it, I'm still a Bronco at heart, so being able to see the success even from an individual standpoint is great. I think he'll take the team to new heights. I heard Marc turned it on towards the end of the season. His shooting percentage was in the high 60s. They've got Joe Siara working out with them, and it's amazing to see how much stronger they have all gotten, and I hear Joe's done wonders with John Bryant as well.
I'm going to start working out with Joe now that I'm back here.
SCU: Would you have been able to start over Kevin Foster if you were still here?
Angley: Probably not. Maybe I would have gotten Steve Nash's assist record if I had those guys on the team, I would have no problem giving them the ball. I get a little more joy setting up a guy for a bucket than I do scoring myself. Kevin is really hard to guard in pick-up games.
SCU: What about John Bryant? Have you seen him since you've been back?
Angley: I haven't seen him yet. He's down in LA and he got tickets to game seven of Lakers-Houston series compliments of Santa Clara alum Kurt Rambis. John's such a good guy with a great family. He's a really good friend of mine. I don't think people really know the commitment and mentality that he brought each day. Obviously, you see the results now physically, but mentally it's a huge piece. Since he got here on day one, Coach Davey and Coach Keating saw this in him and knew his potential. I think he is starting to get to that point. I'm praying he gets drafted and I hope for the best. I'm confident he will, and if not he will be successful in whatever he does. John certainly deserved everything this year.
SCU: You were only with Coach Keating for a year, and you obviously have a lot of respect for Coach Davey, but now that Coach Keating has taken over and you've seen what he's done over the past two years do you feel like he's taking the program in the right direction?
Angley: I think it's definitely going in the right direction. You know I'm an extremely loyal person. I love Coach Davey. He helped me chase my dreams and I am nothing but thankful. Coach Keating did the same thing. I wish I had had more years here.
Now that I'm back, Coach Keating's helping me out by trying to get some stuff set up for a scout overseas, and I'm trying to build a relationship with Coach Kerns and Coach Scholl. Being able to talk to them about things is really good. Hopefully, I can give back in some way while I'm here, because what they have all done for me is immeasurable.
I know they've got a guard named Robert Smith coming in and hopefully I can work out with him and put him through the ringer. Let him know what to expect. I'm coming for you Mr. Smith. We are going to have a few games of one on one.
Coach Keating is attracting a lot of great players, and the program is going in the right direction. It's a great school and community so it's very attractive from that standpoint as well. When you have great players coming in like him, it's a tribute to the coaching staff and our league. The league's reputation is getting better, and we've got to keep up with the changing times. It's a climb but I think it's going in the right direction. I just want to be here to help in whatever way I can!