Nigerian Center Finds New Home

South Kent prep school center Kene Obi has traveled from Nigeria to Senegal to France to Belgium to Virginia to Connecticut. After the long journey, Obi has now decided where he will make his home for the next four years in college. Find out where the 7-2 center is headed in this report…

Kene Obi is a 7-2 280 lb. center from South Kent prep school in Connecticut. Obi's travels have been many as he left his native Nigeria seeking a U.S. college where he can study and play basketball. Kene found that home when he visited DePaul University in Chicago on June 11th and 12th. "He really liked it," said South Kent coach Raphael Chillious. Obi is now on the Lincoln Park campus and is expected to enroll in the summer bridge program which begins this week.

Obi had also received interest from Binghamton, Lamar, and USC.

Kene is relatively new to the USA and the game of basketball. "He hasn't played a tremendous amount of basketball," said Chillious. "On the team with us, he was with four high-major post players. He didn't play that much, but better days are in front of him. He's going to be good, he's just missed a lot of time on the court with all his travels just to get to the United States."

Obi will give DePaul coach Jerry Wainwright an immediate post presence that the Blue Demons need. "He's gigantic, he's 7-2 and 280," Chillious observed. "His whole upper body is all muscle. He's got some skinny legs, but he has surprisingly really nice hands. He has a great feel around the basket. He's a great screener, not a lot of big kids are really good screeners. His deal is the more he plays, the better he's going to get. If he had been here for two or three years, we'd be talking about a kid where everybody is salivating about all year."

While Obi did not get much playing time in actual games, he did improve at South Kent just because of the level of competition in practice. South Kent featured four post players who will end up playing Division I basketball. "This year was very good for him in terms of playing against the Dele Coker's (St. John's), and the Papa Dia's (SMU) and the Matthew Bryan-Amaning's (Washington) and Christian Morris (Class of 2008 - Rutgers) in practice every day. He learned to work hard and obviously working against all high-major players helps you get better."

With the addition of Kene, DePaul's already heralded Class of 2007 expands to six student-athletes. Obi joins Michael Bizoukas, Mac Koshwal, Matija Poscic, Mario Stula, and Darquavis Tucker to round out one of the top recruiting classes in the nation for the Blue Demons.

Obi Talks About Commitment

Kene Obi arrived in Chicago on Friday. He didn't waste any time getting to know his new teammates. "We played a pick up game (on Saturday)," said Obi. "I played with Dar (Tucker)."

Kene was excited to be starting his college life as a Blue Demon. "I liked DePaul because of the academics and the basketball."

Obi also talked about living in Chicago, he isn't a stranger to the city. "It's alright, I have cousins who live here too," said Obi.

DePaul coach Jerry Wainwright was another reason why Obi chose to play in the Big East for the Blue Demons. "He's a good guy and I like the opportunity to play for him," said Kene.

Obi has now enrolled at DePaul and plans on attending classes beginning this week.

Stay tuned to for the very latest news on the Blue Demons and DePaul recruiting.

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