Saturday, 24 June, 2017

Five-star Mohamed Bamba picks Texas over MI

Getty Images Getty Images
Christy Curtis | 19 May, 2017, 04:31

Mohamed Bamba, the top uncommitted player in the Class of 2017, announced that he will attend Texas next season, choosing the Longhorns over Kentucky.

In the commitment piece Bamba wrote for The Player's Tribune, he made note of the McCombs School of Business at Texas, as academics played a significant role in Bamba's decision as part of what he deemed 'Big Rocks'.

"Coach Smart may not have been aware of it, but I put him through a weeklong job interview last summer when he coached me on Team USA in Valdivia, Chile".

247Sports ranks Richards as the No. 14 overall prospect in the 2017 class, and DraftExpress.com already projects him as the 19th overall pick in next year's NBA Draft.

Bamba chose Texas over Kentucky, Michigan, and Duke.

"I've seen firsthand how much he genuinely cares about me and my family and how he's going to challenge me to be in a state of continuous improvement".

But thanks to the surprise commitment of Bamba, the Longhorns will still be really good either way.

Bamba averaged 12.8 points, 9.3 rebounds and 3.4 blocks per game in his senior season (2016-17) while leading Westtown School to a 32-2 mark and a second consecutive Pennsylvania Independent Schools Athletic Association state title.

Texas basketball coach Shaka Smart has won the recruiting sweepstakes for highly-ranked forward Mohamed Bamba.

"I'm extremely excited that Mo has chosen Texas", Smart said in a statement. "The more I learned about The University of Texas and the city of Austin, the more I realized this was an ideal platform for me to pursue my many goals".

"He's a very, very unique person who happens to also be a terrific basketball player".

But Bamba's arrival adds a 7-foot star to Smart's top-10 recruiting class, and proves - despite last year's struggles - that Smart is still one of the nation's strongest recruiters.

Bamba was selected to play in the McDonald's All-American and Jordan Brand All-American games.

"I want my son to get the best education possible", said Bamba's mother, Aminata Johnson. Being surrounded by all the new talent coming in - led by point guard Matt Coleman - should only help what Bamba can do, as well.

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