Cain Laugh

Kate Cain (31) laughs during the Nebraska Huskers’ 72-58 win over Minnesota at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Saturday, Jan. 4, 2020, in Lincoln, Nebraska. 

After the Nebraska women’s basketball team lost to Colorado in the second round of the Women’s National Invitation Tournament to end the season, senior center Kate Cain went back home to New York and thought about the next step in her basketball journey. 

With four years of college basketball and a bachelor’s degree in management under her belt, Cain decided to declare for the WNBA draft. 

“I wanted to wait until the basketball season was over to be able to make this decision,” Cain said. “I talked with my parents and the coaches a lot during that time. Soon, I came to a decision that I feel like it was the best move for me going forward.”

Cain’s decision also came with a trade off, as all seniors were offered an extra year of eligibility due to COVID-19. Although she turned down the offer, head coach Amy Williams, along with the rest of the team, supported Cain’s choice. 

"We are so proud of Kate and all she has accomplished at Nebraska," Williams said on huskers.com. "We are excited to watch her pursue her dreams of professional basketball. She has our full support and we will be cheering for her success in the future." 

Cain is hoping one of the 12 WNBA teams will call her name from one of the 36 picks on April 15. However, she’s also prepared to head overseas if she’s not drafted. Cain said she isn’t dampered by this possible outcome, especially considering her family’s ties with European basketball. 

Cain’s mother, Alison, played overseas in Ireland and loved the experience. For Cain, hearing stories of her mother’s overseas experience really got her excited for what could potentially be hers. While Cain doesn’t know where her overseas destination would be, she is looking forward to experiencing a different culture.

“I’m excited to be a part of another country’s culture,” Cain said. “To be able to travel, get a better sense of what’s out there, all while playing basketball, is really exciting for me. My mom told me stories of her experience and how she loved it, so that just helps me know what’s out there.”

However, regardless of where Cain goes, she also wants to go into the professional world and give 100%. Other than continuing to work and develop her game, she’s just hoping to be able to make the best out of whatever comes next.

“A lot of people who get drafted into the WNBA don’t always make the cut,” Cain said. “If I do get drafted or get signed, I just want to leave a good impression for future reference and just work hard in general. I’ve put a lot of hard work into basketball and I hope that if I do go into the WNBA, it works out for me.”

Cain finished her Husker career with 1,085 points and ranked eighth in school history with 780 rebounds. She started 117 consecutive games, putting her in the top 10 in school history in career starts. 

Her biggest accomplishment was demolishing the school record in blocks with 352, 114 more than the previous record. 

However, Cain said she not only grew as a basketball player, but as a person in general. She’s grateful for the fact that she was able to play with her teammates for the past four years. For Cain, everyone in the program played a big role in her development as a person.

“That's just something that won't ever go away, and nothing can take that away,” Cain said. “The friendships I've been able to create out here. Even though I'm so excited to go pro. I'm gonna miss everyone here so much.”

sports@dailynebraskan.com