Photo: Sarah Andrews
Drake junior point guard Frank Wiseler sees his parents twice a year — once over the summer in Luxembourg City and once over winter break in Des Moines.
His father, Claude, works for the Luxembourg government and his mother, Isabel, is a high school French teacher. His mother loves Christmas and it’s important for her to be with her son during the holidays.
“For my mom, Christmas is really big, so she likes to come over,” Wiseler said. “It’s always hard if you can’t see your family the way you want to.”
The separation was not new for Wiseler when he came to Des Moines. He hasn’t lived with his parents since he was 14 years old. Wiseler transferred to Urspringschule High School in Ehingen, Germany, to join its basketball academy.
“I left home when I was 14, so I’m kind of used to not being with my family so much,” Wiseler said. “I really miss it a lot, but I really like it here at Drake.”
Wiseler was born and raised in Luxembourg City, Luxembourg. He has two older siblings, Marc and Cathy. He speaks German, French and Luxembourgish, which are the official national languages.
Luxembourg is bordered by France, Germany and Belgium and has a population of roughly 500,000 people, about the same as Wyoming.
His high school participated in tournaments in the United States, drawing interest from American colleges. In the end, Drake head coach Mark Phelps reached out to Wiseler.
During the summer, when Wiseler visits his parents, he also plays point guard for the Luxembourg national team. Adjusting to a different basketball style is something Wiseler has also had to confront in the United States.
“It’s a different style of basketball. Here it is more athletic and physical,” Wiseler said. “I also have to watch out to not make any travels. It’s the same rules, but they just call things differently everywhere.”
While basketball has been Wiseler’s passion since he was 4 when his brother got him hooked, he understands the importance of earning a degree.
“It’s important for me to get a good degree,” Wiseler said. “You never know what’s going to happen. You never know if you are going to be injured like I am right now.”
Last July, Wiseler suffered his first major injury in his career and has missed most of the season with a sliced Achilles tendon.
“It’s definitely hard. You know the risk you have when you play sports,” Wiseler said. “You have to expect that you are going to deal with it at some point.”
Wiseler is an international business and management major and hopes that his Drake education helps him get a job after basketball.