Tsafack Demonstrates He Can Play

Last weekend's Slamfest in Richmond provided an outlet for us to eyeball a bevy of underclassmen. While James McAdoo took center stage, Hippolyte Tsafack was outstanding in a supporting role.

He's difficult to understand when he speaks, new to the game and not a guy that has pinged many radars … yet. Hippolyte Tsafack, Charlottesville (Va.) Miller School's 6-foot-8 center, has a name that's tough to pronounce but easy to remember.

Last Saturday, Tsafack (pronounced Cha-Fack), hung 18 points and 11 rebounds on Christchurch. His effort was loud and pronounced. He dominated the glass, dunked hard and owned his area. It was a performance that came in stark contrast to a much more passive prospect we'd seen a month earlier.

"I was trying to do my best every time I play," Tsafack said. "My confidence gets better every day."

It's been two years since Tsafack said goodbye to his parents in Cameroon. He hasn't seen them since. He's here, in the United States, bettering himself in the hopes of one day helping his family.

"My mom asked me to go play basketball," Tsafack said. "My family is poor and she said I can go do something with my life. I play basketball every day, don't stop. I never stop. I play every day, I don't stop."

Tsafack is good, and apparently getting better. He's new to the game, which is exciting. He's also new to a lot of schools that are quasi-recruiting him.

"This is my second year. I played a few games but I hurt my knee and I didn't play all last summer. I feel good right now."

Virginia Tech, Virginia, Marquette, VCU, Notre Dame, Canisius and Clemson have shown interest. Tsafack has seen more NBA than NCAA games and to say he's a rookie to the recruiting process would be a major understatement.

"I don't know anything about it.

"I love college basketball, SEC conference, North Carolina, Duke, Wake Forest."

It's going to take him a while to figure out the landscape of college hoops. During that time, colleges will be checking him out, scanning his game and projecting a path for him.

If he continues to demonstrate improvement and play as hard as he did last Saturday, he'll have the interest of high-major programs.

Scout Hoops Top Stories