“I am really excited to continue my basketball career,” said McFarlin, a 2005 John S. Burke Catholic graduate from Monroe. She went on to play parts of five seasons for Washington University in St. Louis, culminating with an NCAA Division III national championship in 2010.
McFarlin said she was ready to play professionally following her final season, but the two offers she received from teams in Germany and The Netherlands were not satisfactory. So she resumed her law school studies, worked with her father’s design company and gave herself time for her knees to heal.
“I was a little disappointed after not getting a contract offer that I deserved, after my success in college,” McFarlin said.
McFarlin was named to the NCAA Division III championship all-tournament team three times, as well as the University Athletic Association all-star team. She owns the Washington University record for career rebounds (1,013) and ranks 11th in scoring (1,071). She holds the NCAA Division III record for most games played (128). She averaged 10.4 points and 8.5 rebounds during her final season, and posted 33 points and 29 rebounds in two games at the national semifinals.
McFarlin has been interning as a small-business lobbyist on Capitol Hill, and using her off-time to play in men’s leagues in the Washington, D.C., area. That experience, playing against, bigger, stronger and faster players, helped develop her game.
“I feel like I am back,” McFarlin said. “I think I have actually gotten better, which is crazy. I have bounce in my step. My confidence is soaring. I feel like a two-guard in these men’s leagues. It has expanded my scoring abilities.”
Still, there was no guarantee McFarlin would ever realize her pro dreams. There were a lot of e-mails and phone calls and, fortunately, she made a connection through her trainer that led to a contact within the Danish league.
McFarlin’s one-year deal includes housing, transportation and an unspecified salary. Her new team, located just outside of Copenhagen, expects McFarlin to play the small forward or swing positions.
Having already been accepted to Harvard law school, McFarlin will defer her enrollment for a year.
“Everything fell into place,” she said. “I figured I would give it one more shot. This opportunity only comes once.”
McFarlin departs for Europe on Aug. 15. The first game is Sept. 25. The team will play roughly once a week into April.