Kansas basketball inks big man Udoka Azubuike

East center Udoka Azubuike, from Potter's House Christian in Jacksonville, Fla. dribbles the ball during the McDonald's All-American boys basketball game, Wednesday, March 30, 2016, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Matt Marton)

Courtesy: KU Athletics

LAWRENCE, Kan. – Kansas men’s basketball landed a big one as center Udoka Azubuike (You-doke-uh As-a-boo-key) has signed and will be a freshman at KU in 2016-17, KU head coach Bill Self announced Friday.

Azubuike (7-foot-0, 275 pounds) was on the postseason all-star circuit in spring 2016. He is a McDonald’s All-America and scored nine points and eight rebounds in 15 minutes for the East team McDonald’s game March 29 in Chicago. The Lagos, Nigeria native also played for the World Team at the 2016 Nike Hoops Summit where the USA team defeated the World Team 101-67 on April 9 in Portland, Oregon. Additionally, he competed in the Jordan Brand Classic, April 15, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

Originally from Lagos, Nigeria, Azubuike verbally committed to Kansas in late January. He averaged 16.9 points and 9.7 rebounds this past season while at Potter’s House Christian Academy in Jacksonville, Florida in leading the Lions to a 21-9 record under head coach Stephen McLaughlin. Azubuike was a four-year starter for Potter’s House and averaged 17.2 points and 9.6 rebounds his junior season. Azubuike is described as one of the most dominant big men in the class of 2016.

“We feel Udoka is as good as a big-man prospect as there is in the country,” Self said. “He’s got size, strength, explosiveness and is so young. Being only 16 years old, his best ball is well ahead of him. One fortunate thing about Udoka’s age is we know he has to be in school for at least two years due to the NBA minimum age requirements. We see him as an impact guy right off the bat with a high ceiling.”

In the class of 2016, Azubuike is ranked No. 22 overall by ESPN100. He is No. 27 by Rivals.com and No. 34 by Scout.com.

“Norm (Roberts) was the point man in his recruitment,” Self said. “It has been an absolute pleasure in getting to know Udoka and also his guardians, Harry and Donna Coxsome. Being in the United States for a short period, we have seen so much development in his comfort level, not only with us but with the surroundings and everything that goes along with basketball in the States.”

Azubuike joins guard Josh Jackson, who signed May 3, and forward Mitch Lightfoot who signed with Kansas in November 2015.

Kansas Basketball 2016 Signees
Udoka Azubuike, Center, 7-0, 275 lbs., Lagos, Nigeria, Potter’s House Christian Academy (Fla.)
Josh Jackson, Guard, 6-8, 205 lbs., Detroit, Mich., Prolific Prep (Calif.)
Mitch Lightfoot, Forward, 6-8, 219 lbs., Gilbert, Ariz., Gilbert Christian HS

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