MANHATTAN, Kan. – Kansas State men's basketball coach Jim Wooldridge announced the addition of forward Serge Afeli (Abidjan, Ivory Coast) to the squad on Monday. Afeli has signed a Financial Aid agreement with the university and is immediately eligible to practice with the squad.
A 6-foot-9, 235-pound forward from Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Afeli will enter Kansas State as a junior after transferring from the University of Cocody in his hometown of Abidjan. The university does not sponsor a basketball team, so Afeli focused his attention to being a full-time student.
"We are pleased with the addition of Serge to our program," said Wooldridge. "He is a very strong and athletic basketball player that will address our need for not only added depth, but also add versatility in the interior. Serge is considered one of the top players in the Ivory Coast and we think that he is the type of player that can play a couple of different positions for us. We think that he will add to the skill level and versatility that we have already in place for the coming season."
"We are also excited to add someone of Serge's character to our team," said Wooldridge. "He turned down many opportunities to play on the international level in order to continue his academic career. In his country, there is no opportunity to both attend college and play basketball. He is very focused on earning a college degree and we think that Kansas State is great place for him to not only do this, but also expand and improve his basketball ability."
Although Afeli is immediately eligible to begin practicing with the team, Wooldridge indicated that he was confident that Afeli's additional certification issues would be resolved in a timely manner, enabling him to be fully eligible for the upcoming season.
Afeli is the sixth player to join the Kansas State squad during the past year and gives the Wildcats the full compliment of 13 scholarship players for the first time under Wooldridge.
Kansas State returns three starters and eight lettermen from last season's 17-12 squad. The Wildcats will open team practice on Friday, Oct. 14 and play their first exhibition game at Bramlage Coliseum on Thursday, Nov. 3 against the EA Sports All-Stars at 7 p.m.