Basketball and the Catholic faith are in Luke Kasubke’s bloodlines.
After all, his parents, Bret and Michelle Kasubke, met at Quincy University, a small Catholic university in Quincy, Illinois. Bret was on the men’s basketball team and Michelle on the women’s team. Luke attends Chaminade College Preparatory School in Creve Coeur and his sisters, Ella and Katie, played basketball at St. Dominic High School. The family attends Immaculate Conception Church in Dardenne Prairie.
“It’s always been in my blood,” the Chaminade athlete said. “I played other sports when I was little, but basketball was always my favorite.”
Basketball teaches “so many life lessons,” Kasubke said. “Something my dad always said growing up was the two things you can control are effort and attitude. And those are the big things I always live by.”
He started playing basketball in a YMCA league at about age 5, played some CYC basketball and soccer with his parish team and then about seventh grade put all of his time into basketball.
The success he’s had is easy to quantify.
In his junior season, Kasubke posted the 10th-best scoring average, 22.3 points per game, and he was ranked among the top 40 shooting guards in the nation by Rivals.com and 247 Sports.com, which also listed him as the fifth-best prospect in Missouri. He hit 37.9 percent of his shots from 3-point range and made 73.4 percent of his free throws. He had 16 games last season of 20 points or more, including one game of 50 points vs. Parkway North.
He chose Chaminade, he said, because it’s a Catholic school, his cousins went there, and the excellence of its academic and basketball program. Kasubke appreciates the prayers his team says regularly. It brings them closer together when they name someone they’re praying for, he added.
A few weeks ago, Kasubke made his college choice of Kansas State official. The recruiting process was exciting at first but it wore on him as the offers piled up.
Besides high school ball, Kasubke played with Kansas City’s Mokan Elite AAU team along with another Kansas State recruit, Davion Bradford of Mehlville High School.
In a press release, Kansas State Coach Bruce Weber said that Kasubke is “the type of player who wants to get better in all phases of the game and be a complete player. He has pretty good length for a shooting guard and he has really improved his athleticism.”
Chaminade has a 62-24 record in Kasubke’s three years. The team opens its season Dec. 12 against Riverview. The next stop is in Los Angeles for two games in a tournament involving other Marianist schools.
Kasubke appreciates the support of his parents, noting that “I definitely wouldn’t be where I am now without them.” He added kind words for his older sisters, though with a chuckle he acknowledged they may have pushed him around a bit when he was younger.
Kasubke’s coach, Frank Bennett, said “academically, athletically and socially he’s a low-maintenance kid. He tends to make the right decision no matter what the circumstance. You can tell he’s been raised well. Honestly, he’s one of the hardest-working guys I’ve ever coached. He literally wears our gym out. I’m surprised we haven’t had to refinish the floors because of how much he’s been in there.”
Bennett called basketball “the stage,” but it’s only a part of what the coaching staff does with the players. “Our goal is to build high-quality men. Luke has done a great job embracing it, understanding that God has blessed him with certain gifts and talents. He’s done his diligence and cultivated those gifts and talents.”
Tim Sartori, chair of the counseling department at Chaminade, described Kasubke as “quiet, fierce and humble,” someone who “lets his actions do the talking both on the court and within the school building.”
He deflects accolades, Sartori said, and is similar to other “extremely committed” students who take part in activities to deepen their faith but don’t draw attention to it, Sartori said.
Chaminade coach Frank Bennett is optimistic about his coming season.
four seniors — Luke Kasubke, Matteus Case, Frazier Ott and Harrison
Vicker — are “high character” and good basketball players, Bennett said.
The juniors also can play well, and the younger players “will blend in
very well with the guys,” he said.
His players are “selfless
individuals. They’re not trying to play ‘hero ball’ or one-up each
other. They literally want to do what’s right for Chaminade,” the coach