FORMER MORRICE and MSU basketball star Jamie (Wesley) Klein was inducted into the Greater Lansing Hall of Fame on July 30 in Lansing. Klein is pictured here during her days on the Morrice High School team. Her Number 30 jersey has been retired by Morrice. She graduated high school in 1994 and played at MSU until 1998. Having started 78 games over three years for the Spartans, Klein is among the college’s career leaders in scoring, shooting percentage, steals, assists and three-point field goal percentage. (Courtesy Photo)

Former Morrice High School and Michigan State University women’s basketball star Jamie (Wesley) Klein was inducted into the Greater Lansing Hall of Fame on July 30 along with eight other Lansing area athletes. The local star played at MSU from 1994 through 1998, playing 111 games and starting for the Spartans for three seasons. Her well-rounded game produced 1,075 points during her time with the Spartans, along with 208 assists, 197 steals and 101 3-point field goals.

Klein was surprised by the honor and definitely counts the induction as one of the highlights of her career, along with having her jersey retired at Morrice, donning the MSU jersey for the first time and winning the school’s first-ever Big 10 title in 1997. She credited many people with helping her accomplish her goals, including her high school coach Spencer Goodyear, her college coach Karen Langeland and her family.

“I had such a great network of people who helped me along the way,” Klein said. “There were so many people who helped me get to where I got; it is hard to single out just one person as the most influential. I had great family support and my older brother and sister played a big role. I tagged along a lot, and I always tried to compete with my older siblings.”

Though she was a great shooter and defender, Klein calls her competitiveness the most important part of her game. “If there was something that I needed to get better at, I was going to work harder to be good or even better than that.”

The step up in competition from Morrice to MSU is substantial, but Klein was able to make the transition successfully. She did not start her freshman year with the Spartans, but her hard work and competitiveness made her a regular starter with the team.

“It takes a lot of hard work,” Wesley Klein said of the dedication that it takes to make the step up from high school to the highest level of college sports. “I was very fortunate to have great family support, but the hard work was the key. Everyone at the college level was the star of their high school team, so I could no longer get by with my speed like I had in the past. There was an adjustment period, and I always look back and think that I could have worked harder, but the extra time I put in made me a stronger player. It is also important to not specialize in one sport. Have fun and play as many sports as possible, because not everyone gets the chance to play after high school.”

Klein is enjoying married life and is currently a full-time mother to her four-year-old daughter. She married MSU basketball player Jason Klein, and the family currently resides in the Ypsilanti area.

Local Basketball Star Inducted into Greater Lansing Hall of Fame was last modified: August 24th, 2015 by Karen Elford