MCCC alumnus signs to German professional basketball team

By Eric Devlin
Montgomery County Community College alumnus Seth Compas has been signed to the Berlin Braves 2000 professional basketball team in Germany. Photo by Gene J. Walsh

Montgomery County Community College alumnus Seth Compas has been signed to the Berlin Braves 2000 professional basketball team in Germany. Photo by Gene J. Walsh

A Montgomery County Community College alumnus has taken his talents on the basketball court overseas to play professionally in Germany.

Seth Compas at MontcoSeth Compas, 24, a 2022 Criminal Justice major from Blue Bell, recently signed to play for the Berlin Braves 2000 team. The team took to social media to make the official announcement.

“We are happy to welcome the latest addition to the Braves family: Seth Compas,” the team wrote on Facebook. “Seth is an athletic guard from out of the States, who brings athletic wing play on both offense and defense. We’re excited to have him on board as we make our push in the second half of the season! Welcome to the family.” Before his first game, the team announced Compas was averaging 15.6 points, 4.5 rebounds and 1 assist.

While the only German words he knows at this point are guten tag and gesundheit, the 6-foot-3-inch shooting guard from Graceland University in Lamoni, Iowa said the word excited doesn’t even begin to describe how he’s feeling about the news.

“It’s very exciting,” he said. “I can’t put it into words. It’s a no-brainer. I’ve always wanted to play professionally.”

About a month ago, Compas said his agent called to say that the Braves were interested in signing him. Compas was unaware of the team at the time but knew there are thousands of teams around the world that are passionate about basketball. After a discussion with his family, who all told him to jump at the opportunity, he agreed and hopped on a flight to Berlin two days later.

“Since I’ve been here it’s a huge culture change,” he said from his apartment in Berlin. The team provided housing and paid for his flight. “The cost of living here is very cheap. The experience so far has been great.”

The only American on his team, Compas said everyone speaks English and his teammates come from around the world.

“My roommate is from Germany with South African roots,” he said. “I have teammates from Ukraine, Argentina-- there’s a lot of diversity.”

Compas is under contract until the end of the season in April unless the team makes the playoffs, in which case he’d continue through at least the beginning of May.

As his time with the team gets underway, Compas couldn’t help but reflect on his journey up to this point.

“My dad introduced me to basketball,” he said, “and played a pivotal role into my basketball career.”

Seth Compas free throwThe Wissahickon High School alumnus graduated in 2018 before coming to MCCC. He didn’t play for his high school team and was among the first team of players for then-new Mustangs Men’s Basketball Head Coach Nyere Miller. Compas played on the 2020 men’s basketball team that was crowned Region XIX champions. The team traveled to Rochester, Minn., to compete in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) championship tournament before losing in the opening round.

“My time at Montco changed me. It changed me athletically and it changed me as a person. I didn’t play in high school. I came in with a clean slate. The new coaching staff made me believe in myself as a player and as a person. They helped me manage my time, be a good person on and off the court. I had a lot of growing up to do at Montco and I couldn’t have asked for a better supporting cast.” - Seth Compas

Looking back on his time with the Mustangs, Compas said his experience allowed him to grow in all facets of his life.

“My time at Montco changed me,” said Compas. “It changed me athletically and it changed me as a person. I didn’t play in high school. I came in with a clean slate. The new coaching staff made me believe in myself as a player and as a person. They helped me manage my time, be a good person on and off the court. I had a lot of growing up to do at Montco and I couldn’t have asked for a better supporting cast.”

Once a Mustang, always a Mustang, it seems, as Compas said he’ll routinely wear his Mustangs sweatshirts in Germany, even if he has to explain what they mean to his teammates.

Miller, now Assistant Director of Athletics for Recruitment, couldn’t contain his pride for Compas for achieving his dream.

“He is a testament to hard work,” he said. “He’s always been a hard worker. He’s stuck with it and gotten better year after year. He’s proven anybody who’s doubted him wrong.”

Miller said the team has a saying “put Montco on the map” and Compas continues to live by that credo.

“He continues to be an example for student-athletes,” said Miller. “For our students to see he’s a pro. He played college, had accolades and was able to go overseas as a professional. It’s good for students to look up to and model themselves after him.”

Miller admitted he’s been watching Compas’ play in Germany and is definitely a fan.

“I need a jersey,” he said.

Seth Compas dunkEqually proud of Compas is Kelly Dunbar, Director of Athletics and Campus Recreation. She remembers how shy Compas was as a first-year student and how over time he began to open up and blossom. By setting goals and achieving them over his life, Compas continues to set an example.

“He came into Montco one person and left a different person,” she said. “He’s on his way to his peak talent, and I’m glad it’s being recognized by a bigger community.”

After Montco, Compas briefly studied as a sports and fitness administration/management major at Union College before leaving after the first semester. He then transferred to Graceland in August 2021 as a Criminal Justice/Police Science major. He earned a bachelor’s degree in May 2023.

During his time playing for the Yellowjackets, Compas said he was first team all-conference, led the team in scoring, and was top five in the league in field goal and three-point shooting. After graduation he signed with an agent from Brightside Sports, stationed out of Italy.

Now playing overseas he said the competition is fierce, and he’s enjoying the experience.

Seth Compas German jersey“The competition is good,” he said. “And I feel like I made a great impact. I showed I belong in the situation. Being brought in to have a specific role, my first game I played 30 minutes and scored 21 points in a loss. But I proved I belong here for sure.”

He hopes he can continue to make his Mustangs fans proud and maybe one day play with them overseas.

“I think Montco the year I came was overlooked athletically,” he said. “I’m proud to be a part of the rebuild into something greater. Before I came the team didn’t have any wins. When I came in 2018-19, we went 15-10 and then 20-10. I’m proud I went to Montco. People would ask ‘Why would go you to Montco?’ I’m glad. It’s grown into a powerhouse program. My younger brother went to Montco and now he’s playing for Dalton State College in Georgia.”

The 2023-2024 Mustangs Men’s Basketball team is currently ranked sixth nationally in its division and the Women’s Basketball team is currently receiving votes.

“It's started the domino effect,” said Compas. “Anybody, it doesn’t matter how big your school is, if you really want it, you can do it. We’re starting to see that in the Montco players after me for sure.”