Aerial Powers leaving MSU early for WNBA

Tony Paul
The Detroit News
Aerial Powers

East Lansing -- Michigan State all-time leading scorer Aerial Powers is skipping her senior season to enter the WNBA draft.

"This was not an easy decision to make, but I want to thank Coach (Suzy) Merchant and all the coaches and support staff, my family and all of my teammates," Powers said. "I have enjoyed every second of being a Spartan, but now I look forward to the next chapter of my basketball career. Spartan Nation will always hold a special place in my heart."

Powers, a former Detroit Country Day standout, will be the sixth Spartan drafted into the WNBA.

She finished her MSU career with 1,817 points, passing Liz Shimek's 1,780 for tops all-time. It took Shimek four seasons.

Powers scored 697 points this season, breaking her own single-season record of 678 last season.

"When you are a coach, the No. 1 thing that you want for all of your players is for them to live their dreams and accomplish all of the goals that they set for themselves," Merchant said. "Aerial, since Day 1, has had a dream to play in the WNBA, so it's rewarding and exciting for her to actually have the opportunity to live that dream.

"She was a tremendous ambassador for our university. We are very proud of her and appreciate everything that she gave to this program.

"We wish her nothing but the best on her new journey."

The WNBA draft is Thursday, April 14, in Uncasville, Connecticut.

This will be the 20th season of the WNBA.