We all get excited when we’re watching a UW basketball game and Brendan Sherrer makes a late-game appearance. Sherrer’s appearance means one thing -- the Huskies are blowing out their opponent and they’ve brought out the ‘Human Victory Cigar’ to celebrate.
Back in the day, the Seattle SuperSonics had their own ‘Human Victory Cigar.’ His name was Steve Scheffler.
Scheffler played seven seasons in the NBA, five with Seattle, but only appeared in 174 games and made eight starts, averaging 1.9 points and 5.3 minutes per game. Despite his limited time on the court, the Seattle faithful latched onto Scheffler for the same reason Husky fans have latched onto Sherrer. No small accomplishment considering the teams Scheffler played on included the likes of Gary Payton, Shawn Kemp, Nate McMillan, etc. He retired following the 1996-97 season.
Seattle Times’ staff writer Percy Allen placed Scheffler 39th on his list of 41 most memorable Sonics back in 2008.
Scheffler played his college ball at Purdue University, steadily improving each of his four years there. He averaged 1.5 points and 1.5 rebounds per game his freshman year, but 16.8 points and 6.1 rebounds his senior year. During his sophomore year, Scheffler set a Big Ten single-season record with a .708 field goal percentage. Another collegiate record Scheffler broke was that of career field goal percentage. Throughout his career at Purdue, Scheffler shot at a .685 clip. Scheffler also enhanced his reputation when following his junior year he was named a reserve center on the U.S. team that won the gold medal at the World University Games in West Germany.