Star baller Katie Timmerman commits to play pro basketball in Korea

The Concordia Courier

Katie Timmerman, signing to play for S-Birds

By Olivia Highstreet | 11/10/2023

Katie Timmerman’s dream was to play basketball for as long as possible, and her dreams are coming true. Timmerman, the 2023 Concordia grad and former women's basketball student-athlete, recently signed to play professionally in South Korea in the Women’s Korean Basketball League (WKBL) for the S-Birds. 

Timmerman attended Concordia as a student-athlete for five years, receiving her undergraduate degree in Kinesiology and pursuing her Master's in Coaching and Athletic Administration. She was a two-time All-PacWest Conference selection and holds the Concordia program record for the best career free throw percentage. Timmerman ranks in the top 3 all-time in average minutes played per game. 

She is also the third Concordia women's basketball player to score at least 1,000 career points in the NCAA DII; all three signed to play professionally. Not only was she a standout athlete, but she was also a leader on and off campus, which earned her the 2023 Concordia Female Golden Eagle Award. 

Camryn Kiernan, a former teammate, said, “Katie definitely had a leadership role on the team. From when I came in as a freshman, she was like my big sister and welcomed me in.” Kiernan continued, “She was the glue of our team. She held everyone together by doing all the little things and knocking down threes.”

The little things do not go unnoticed on the women’s basketball team. Head Coach Christine Collins-Kiernan said, “[Katie] came in, playing wise, as someone who did all the little things. She started midway through her freshman year and played more minutes than anyone on our team, but that was because she did all the little things.”

Timmerman is grateful for her journey at Concordia.“I’ve learned so much about myself and walked away as a completely different person than I entered as,” she said. “One of the major lessons I learned that I will take with me to Korea is that everyone has a different path in life. My path may look different compared to the native Korean players, but just because it is different doesn’t mean I'm behind or not capable of competing; it just means I have a different experience.” 

Her journey to playing professionally wasn’t direct. It involved participating in the USA Women’s National Handball Tournament and, eventually, earning a spot on the U.S. Senior Women's National Team this past summer. 

Regardless of her success in handball, Timmerman made the decision to play professional basketball through a connection to the WKBL. She said, “I ultimately chose Korea because my mom was born in Seoul, and I saw it as a great opportunity to represent and connect with that side of my family. I had always wanted to visit Korea and learn more about the culture and way of life, so it made the decision easier.” 

Timmerman is excited to play in a new environment. She said, “There seems to be a great and supportive basketball community out here that I am excited to be a part of. I’m also excited to see how much I’ll be able to grow on and off the court. There are so many great resources out here to help me grow and develop that I’m excited to see where it will take me.”

She will be in Korea for the majority of the year. The S-Bird’s season begins in October and concludes in March, depending on how they perform in the playoffs. Timmerman plans to play in Korea for the next few years, take a break to pursue handball, and then return to continue playing basketball in Korea. 

As Timmerman looks forward to this exciting chapter, she said, “Life is way too short to not be making the most of it or to be living inauthentically. My goal while I’m out here is to make the most of the unique opportunity I have to play professionally in a different country.” 


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