Throughout the day, we'll take a look back at iconic figures — one per school — from Big Ten's basketball past. The eighth installment:
Whatever happened to ... Northwestern’s Evan Eschmeyer
Then: The large Ohioan earned All-Big Ten honors in three seasons for the Wildcats during the late 1990s, leading Northwestern to the NIT during his senior year. His 1,805 points are third on Northwestern’s career list, and his 995 rebounds are first by more than 100. He led the team in scoring and rebounding three consecutive seasons. He split his career between two Northwestern coaches, Ricky Byrdsong and Kevin O’Neill.
Now: After four years in the NBA with the Nets and Mavericks, Eschmeyer retired and went back to school to earn his law degree. He has a practice in Columbus, Ohio. Eschmeyer and his wife, former Northwestern basketball star Kristina Divjak, have twins.
What they’re saying: “People talked about Eschmeyer from the day he accepted a scholarship to Northwestern, and what an impact he could have if he were healthy. Remember, he didn’t play his first two years because of a foot injury. By the time he left, he’d been there six years, and opponents would always kid about how old he was and how long he’d been there. But he was the best thing the ‘Cats had going after their NIT team of the early ’90s. A dominant big man who also made himself a very good free throw shooter over the course of his career. He gave the ‘Cats a chance. Best example: the 1999 Big Ten tournament at the United Center. They beat Penn State in the 8 vs 9 game, then had to face the 1 seed, Michigan State. It went right down to the wire before Mateen Cleaves hit a shot to win it for MSU.” — Dave Eanet, Voice of the Wildcats