Hippolyte Tsafack- A Coaches Take

TSR spoke to Hippolyte Tsafack's Albany City Rocks coach to get a "Coaches Take" on this 2010 prospect.

Remember Lonny Baxter? Well, Maryland fans do, and so does Gary Williams. The Maryland Terrapins Basketball Program has been searching for a big man to step in and control the paint for the past two years. They may have found their man. Hippolyte Tsafack, the 6'8, 230 pound monster is a 2010 prospect that the Terps have their eye on. In fact, Tsafack recently made an official visit to College Park to meet the coaching staff and get a good idea of what Terrapin Basketball is all about.

TSR recently spoke with Coach Hall from Hippolyte Tsafack's AAU team, Albany City Rocks, and got the latest details on the hot recruit. Coach Hall spoke very highly of Tsafack, saying that the fact that he hasn't been playing the game very long just shows how much raw talent he really has. When asked to describe his player, Coach Hall commented on Tsafack's, “NBA body,” as well as his ability to make spectator's jaws drop as he steps onto the floor. “What do you see his potential as?” inquired TSR. “He is fundamental around the basket…could he become a guy who can put it on the floor and do things-make some passes? Yes. Is he a good passer? Yes. Has he put it altogether yet? No.” Coach Hall stressed that it is a learning process for Hippolyte as he continues to mature in the game.

Currently, Scout.com has a wide array of schools with interest in Hippolyte Tsafack. These schools include Auburn, Clemson, Duke, Houston, Maryland, Memphis, New Mexico, Notre Dame, Virginia, VCU and Virginia Tech. As of right now, Maryland and Memphis are the only two schools that have a recorded official visit by Hippolyte and, coincidentally, are the only two schools with an official offer. As the year goes on, it is expected that the number of offers will rise. Coach Hall commented on the race for Hippolyte, saying “I think every school in the conversation has been in 'the lead' at one point or another.”

The fact that Gary Williams practices a unique coaching style is no secret and can sometimes be the deciding factor for a young recruit. Coach Hall believes that Williams' style of coaching “will be good for Hippolyte.” This may be crucial in the deciding process for Tsafack, because comfort and learning ability are absolutely essential when it comes to the maturation on the basketball court. If the people around him believe he can succeed under Gary Williams and the rest of the Maryland coaching staff, then Hippolyte's decision process could be made a bit easier.

Hippolyte may have a good head on his shoulders, and he may be a very spiritual guy, but choosing where to call home for the next four years and where to get the best basketball experience is a daunting task to handle for a 17 year-old. Because of this, Hippolyte Tsafack has the guidance that is necessary for him to make a wise decision. Joe Touomou, a former Georgetown Hoya, acts as a mentor and guide to Hippolyte during the decision process. Touomou wants only the best for his guys; whether that is at a mid-major or a big school, he wants his players to be comfortable and learn the game.

It is one thing to be compared to Lonny Baxter. It's another thing to be referred to as a more athletic, strong, and overall more talented player than Lonny Baxter. Hippolyte Tsafack has been called just that, and it will be interesting to see if his official visit to Maryland was enough to convince him to wear red and white in the Atlantic Coast Conference with one of the greatest coaches to ever pace nervously up and down the floor.


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