Kentucky Basketball is embracing the trend of bringing aboard budding international hoopers, and another addition could be on the way.
According to Jake Weingarten of Stockrisers, the Kentucky coaching staff has reached out to ND Okafor, a power forward in the class of 2022 who hails from the Republic of Ireland.
Kentucky has reached out to 2022 forward ND Okafor’s coach, he told @Stockrisers. The 6-foot-9 forward from Ireland, averaged 16.1 points and 14.3 rebounds in the FIBA U16 Europe Championships.
Baylor, Arizona, Rutgers, Utah, among those making major push.
— Jake (@jakeweingarten) July 1, 2020
At the moment, the 6-foot-7 Okafor is still an under-the-radar prospect. He currently attends the NBA Academy Latin America, a new-founded program located in Mexico City intended to help give exposure to players who normally don’t have the opportunity to do so, but 247 Sports does not currently have him ranked in its system.
What we do know is that at just 16 years old, Okafor put up impressive numbers for Ireland’s U16 FIBA team last summer, posting 16.1 points, 14.3 rebounds, and 5.0 blocks in eight total games while shooting 52.9 percent from the floor. He also dropped a double-double in all eight outings.
Since the middle of June, Okafor’s recruitment has picked up some serious steam. Several high-profile offers have come his way, including Baylor, Georgia, Arizona, and Creighton, among others. While the ‘Cats have not officially extended an offer to Okafor, it’s clear that his stock is on the rise.
It’s not often that basketball players from Ireland gain notoriety–only one player of Irish descent have made it to the NBA throughout the league’s history–but Okafor has a unique opportunity with the NBA’s Academy. It put his skills on the map and now the rest of the world is starting to learn of his talents. Check him out.