Nebraska women’s basketball guard Jaz Shelley was one of just 15 student-athletes from around the nation invited to attend the inaugural NBA Student-Athlete Summit during Summer League action in Las Vegas (July 12-15).
Shelley spent the week participating in panel discussions, networking sessions and behind-the-scenes tours of the NBA Summer League. Shelley, a 22-year-old sports media and communication major at Nebraska, was the only active student-athlete from the Big Ten Conference to attend the event, which is a branch of the NBA’s SALA platform – an events and media company that brings together a diverse group of accomplished leaders from across a wide variety of industries.
“It was an incredible experience,” Shelley said. “I was fortunate to hear from and communicate with some very highly decorated professionals affiliated with the NBA. It was an intense two days with speaking events, networking conventions and watching NBA games, but it was so much fun. It really opened my eyes to a whole new world of sport.”
The focus of the NBA Student-Athlete Summit is to bring the best and brightest college women’s basketball players who aspire to work in sports together in order to connect with NBA team and league executives along with broadcast partners who are interested in filling future roles across their organizations.
Shelley, a junior point guard from Moe, Australia, was a second-team All-Big Ten selection and a Big Ten All-Defensive Team choice by the conference media in her first season as a Husker in 2021-22. She led Nebraska in scoring (13.1 ppg), assists (5.0 apg) and steals (1.8 spg) while ranking second among the Huskers in rebounding (6.3 rpg). She also ranked among the nation’s top three-point shooters, burying 40.6 percent (82-202) of her long-range attempts while helping the Huskers advance to the 2022 NCAA Tournament. The Australian National Team member also set a Nebraska and Big Ten Tournament record by knocking down nine three-pointers in a second-round tournament win over Illinois on March 3, 2022.
Some of the high-level executives who spoke at the NBA Student-Athlete Summit included: RC Buford, CEO, Spurs Sports & Entertainment; Swin Cash, Vice President of Basketball Operations/Team Development, New Orleans Pelicans; Allison Feaster; Vice President, Player Development, Boston Celtics; Lawrence Epstein, COO, UFC (based in Las Vegas); Willie Green, Head Coach, New Orleans Pelicans; Raven Jemison, Executive Vice President Basketball Operations, Milwaukee Bucks; Amanda Lamb, Head of Marketing, Wilson Sporting Goods; Jeff Lester, Chief Commercial Officer, Vivid Seats; Jim Tanner, CEO & Founder, Tandem Sports & Entertainment; Mark Tatum, Deputy Commissioner & COO, NBA; Tamika Tremaglio, Executive Director, NBA Players Association
“The summit helped me narrow down my options for a career outside of basketball,” Shelley said. “I was able to pick the brains of the people working in my dream jobs, which helped me soak up so much more knowledge and insight. I hope to build on those connections I made in Las Vegas and continue to make steps in the direction of my career after basketball.”