Waves Basketball’s Career Scoring Leader Ross Wins Italian League’s MVP

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Colbey Ross attempts a layup during a Lega Basket Serie A game in Italy earlier this season. The former Pepperdine standout played this season in Italy's top hoops league after playing the previous season in the Czech Republic. Photo from Ciamillo-Castoria

Point guard averaged 17.5 points, 7.5 assists and 4.4 rebounds a contest during for Pallacanestro Varese

The top scorer in Pepperdine Waves men’s basketball history was named the Most Valuable Player of Italy’s top hoops professional league last week.

Point guard Colbey Ross, who graduated two years ago, won the Lega Basket Serie A’s MVP award for the 2022-23 season on May 11. 

Ross, who played for Pallacanestro Varese, a squad in northern Italy, called winning MVP a team award and thanked his teammates and coaches for helping him have success.

“I’ve really enjoyed every part of this season and have learned many life lessons here,” Ross said in a press release. “Playing in Italy has been so different than anything I’ve experienced. The talent level is very high and the intensity of the games feels like a playoff game every time.” 

The MVP award, Pepperdine Waves head coach Lorenzo Romar noted, is a great honor for Ross. 

“Nothing surprises me with Colbey,” he stated. “He is such a hard worker and has such a strong belief and drive in himself. You just can’t ever count him out.” 

Ross, 24, is known for his efficiency, hoops IQ, and play-making ability. He averaged 17.5 points, 7.5 assists, and 4.4 rebounds a contest during Varese’s 30-game season. 

The former Wave shot 50 percent from the field and 38.8 percent from three-point range. Ross tallied 27 games in double-figure scoring and had a 17-game streak of scoring at least 10 points. He also had seven double-doubles and a triple-double — 30 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assists — in a victory over Givova Scafation April 30. 

Lega Basket Serie A is Italy’s premier basketball league. There are nine other leagues in the country. 

Ross played for ERA Nymburk in the Czech Republic during the 2021-22 season. In 32 games, he averaged 14.7 points, 5.8 assists, and 2.6 rebounds a game. 

Ross scored 2,236 points during his college career. He is also tops in Waves history in total assists (854), assists per game (6.8), field goals attempted (1,582), free throws made (651), free throw percentage (84.7 percent), games started (125), and minutes played (4,424). 

He was the first NCAA Division I men’s basketball player to have at least 2,200 points, 800 assists, and 400 rebounds in a career. 

Romar is proud of Ross. 

“He has not been distracted in reaching his goals, and I don’t see this being the last award he will get,” Romar said. “As long as Colbey Ross puts on a uniform in the game of basketball, he’s going to continue to excel.”