One of Africa’s most prominent youth basketball players, Reuben Chinyelu, has committed to play for the Washington State University over Tennessee State University, University of Florida, University of Memphis, Santa Clara University and others after spending two years in the NBA Africa Academy in Senegal.
Chinyelu picked Washington State over Tennessee, Florida, Kansas, Georgia, Rutgers, Mississippi State, Memphis, Maryland, Santa Clara and others having put his massive talent on display during the NBA Academy Games in July where he led the African team to winning the competition also finishing as rebounds leader.
The 19-year-old 6-foot-11 center who can also play as a forward also boasts of a 7-foot-8 wingspan and a 245-pound frame.
“I was fortunate to be recruited by so many wonderful schools,” Chinyelu told ESPN. “Washington State stood out with their style of play and the experience the coaching staff has with African and international players. Playing college basketball with and against other dedicated players who want to win, are hungry and have a big vision for their future and aspire to be the best is something that I’m looking forward to.
“The NBA Academy prepared me with the foundation they set up for me, not just as a basketball player, but also mentally, physically, emotionally and intellectually,” Chinyelu said. “Coaches here take their time to elaborate and enlighten players about the game. There is a lot of talent in Africa, but due to a lack of infrastructure and visualization, we didn’t always get the opportunities to showcase ourselves in the past. It’s a wonderful place to develop.”
Chinyelu burst into the limelight after finishing as the best rebounder at the 2019 FIBA U-19 Basketball Championship in Cape Verde where he amassed a total of 112 rebounds in the competition.
Less than a year later, he was given an admission into the NBA Academy in Senegal to continue honing his skills which has since improved as he has become one of the best youth basketball talents in Africa after featuring in various competitions for the NBA Africa team. He received a late call up to D’Tigers team who competed at the FIBA World Cup qualifier in Cape Verde.