Fran McCaffery has added another piece to his rebuilding foundation in the form of 6-9/220 pound big man Gabe Olaseni from Sunrise Christian Academy in Kansas. Olaseni made the announcement today at a press conference at his school and his prep school coach sent out the tweet.
Olaseni is originally from England and began playing basketball ‘seriously at the age of 14, as he shared with Rob Howe of HawkeyeInsider.com.
At this stage of his career, as a senior in high school, he is still working on the offensive aspects of his game and has a lot of upside potential in that area. Based upon things I have read as well as having spoken with basketball analysts that have seen him play, he can be an immediate help to the program in transition as well being a ‘stopper’ on the backside of the defense. He is athletic and while most 6-9 players can ‘play above the rim’, he has exceptional leaping ability and could prove to be a very good shot blocker.
His high school coach Kyle Lindsted told Rivals.com that Iowa offered him a scholarship after attending the first workout they saw. The coach also said he has good hands and feet, which is a start for an offensive game.
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Olaseni joins 6-5 swingman Anthony Hubbard and 6-5 shooting guard Josh Oglesby and 6-8 versatile wing Aaron White in Iowa’s recruiting class of 2011. Iowa has one scholarship remaining due to the departure of Cully Payne.
Fran McCaffery has said Iowa will continue to look into filling this scholarship over the next month or two, as they signed Bryce Cartwright in June of last year. However, he is not opposed to ‘banking’ the scholarship and using it in next year’s class.