WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — One of the greatest players in UNCW basketball history is calling an end to his professional hoops career.
According to a news release, Brett Blizzard, who set records as a star for the Seahawks from 1999 to 2003, will officially announce his retirement Friday afternoon.
Blizzard, 39, has played professional basketball in Europe since graduating from UNCW. He was also the original co-host of WWAY’s Full Court Press high school basketball highlight show. After 16 years and a couple hundred thousand miles flying back and forth from Europe, he felt the time was right to put down roots in a town he and his family love, according to the release.
He had an offer to continue playing professional basketball for an Italian team this year, but after Blizzard made his decision, he flew to Italy recently and informed the team’s owner that he was ending his playing career.
Blizzard will make Wilmington his full-time home and take on a new challenge in real estate sales for Destination Realty Corp.
Blizzard had been talking about making this very move for a couple of years with good friend and fellow basketball junkie Craig Wheeler. Wheeler is the president of Destination Realty Corp. and volunteer head coach at Wilmington’s Coastal Christian High School.
According to Blizzard, he and his wife and their four children had been exploring new opportunities for their family and felt that joining the team at Destination Realty Corp. was the best move.
“While it’s bittersweet thinking about not playing professional basketball anymore, my wife and I are really excited making Wilmington our full-time home and taking on this new adventure with Destination Realty Corp.,” Blizzard said in a statement. “After considering all of our options, this was by far the best opportunity for our family and me professionally.”
Blizzard will be the first real estate sales representative for Salters Haven, a new Logan Homes community in the early stages of development in Hampstead.
Wheeler said he couldn’t think of a better person to help kick-off the sales efforts at Salters Haven.
“Brett is truly a one-of-a-kind competitor who brings his best every day, regardless of what he’s doing,” Wheeler said in the release. “He and his family have a strong bond with the Wilmington community and he truly believes that this is a wonderful place to live and raise a family.”
During his four years at UNCW, Blizzard won CAA Player of the Year twice, was first-team All-CAA all four years and CAA Tournament MVP three times. He graduated as UNCW’s all-time leading scorer with 2,144 points. The Seahawks retired his No. 11 jersey in 2005. He helped lead UNCW to a first-round NCAA Tournament win in 2002.