Former WMU Standout Marquisha Harris Lands a Spot on the USA Jones Cup Team
KALAMAZOO, Mich. – Have you ever heard of the USA Basketball Jones Cup Team? If not, then you were in the same boat as former Western Michigan women’s basketball player Marquisha Harris, that is until she found out she was the newest member of the team.
The USA Jones Cup is an annual tournament that takes place in Taiwan. It is a team that consists of the top-12 women from the country (not including those on the Olympic team for Rio) and it is an Olympic event. The USA team will compete against other Olympic and National teams. It was originally designed for teams across Asia and the Middle East to prepare for the FIBA Asia Championship and the 2016 Olympics.
Harris, a WMU player from 2011-15, has always had the dream of continuing her basketball career overseas. When she got the call a few weeks back, that dream started to take off in the right direction.
“Strangely enough, I have never heard of this team or event until I was notified that I made the team,” Harris said. “I was sleeping in on a Saturday morning and I received a phone call from an Atlanta, Ga. number (which is where the scouting combine I went to was). I was half asleep still when Jermaine Barnes was talking to me. He said he wanted me to play for his team I instantly woke up and said "wait, what!?" Then a rush of excitement rushed through my body and before I knew it, I was crying I was so happy. I have worked so hard for so long and it's finally paying off.”
Harris was a two-year starter at WMU and was named Honorable Mention All-Mid-American Conference (MAC) her sophomore and junior seasons. As a sophomore, she was named the Team’s MVP and won the Coaches’ Award. As a junior, she won a share of the Team MVP while finishing second on the team in scoring for the second straight season. But her days at Read Fieldhouse in Kalamazoo, Mich. are over, and a new chapter of her basketball life is just beginning.
“The main thing I'm excited about with this event coming up is to see where I stand next to other internationally ranked players,” Harris said. “I consider myself a top player and I want to play and dominate everyone. I'm confident I can play with anyone and this will be a good test for that. It has definitely always been a dream to play international basketball. I have nothing against the WNBA, I just really want to travel the world while I play basketball.”
The USA William Jones Cup for the women’s side will take place from August 3 to August 7. Harris sees this time as an excellent opportunity to get her name out for everyone in the basketball world to see. She is one step closer to achieving her dream of playing international basketball, and the WMU Women’s Basketball program couldn’t be more excited for her.
“We are all very happy for Marquisha and her opportunity to perform at the USA Jones Cup in August,” WMU head coach Shane Clipfell said. “Marquisha worked hard in the classroom to finish up her degree requirements in her fifth year, and to get this chance is a great way to finish her career here as a student-athlete. We will all be pulling for her and the USA Jones Cup Team to represent us well in August and we will be following her closely.”
Follow the links on the side to keep updated with Marquisha and the USA Jones Cup Team!