Six-foot-7 Souleymane Koureissi from Iona Prep has a long list of mid major options (Boston U, Bradley, Kent State, Hofstra, St. Bonaventure, etc) but his latest offers have pushed him to a new level. Rhode Island offered at the start of the month, Minnesota became the first major conference offer on Wednesday, and South Florida followed them with an offer on Thursday.
The Latest…Souleymane has become much more skilled on the perimeter which is where the new interest is coming from at the highest level. In addition to his offers Koureissi is also hearing from Rutgers and Temple plus new calls are being made every day. He’s a high academic kid so he’s looking for a quality program in that regard as well.
The Numbers…Playing for the Castle Knights on the Adidas Uprising circuit Souleymane is the lone player on his 1-7 team averaging more than seven points per game so he’s shouldering a lot of the offensive load. Kouresissi is scoring 11.5 points and almost six boards a contest. His shooting numbers aren’t high (35 percent from the floor, 30 percent at the arc) but Kouresissi has to take a lot of contested shots against the shot clock.
Minnesota….The Gophers have been the first major conference offer for numerous kids in the New York area and Soueymane is another. His potential has sky rocketed because he has an agile and long frame with ball skills that have increased rapidly. He’s hit many radars because his handles and shooting touch are greatly improved. Koureissi fits the ball of long and agile on the wing which is what Minnesota looks for.
The Video…This video is a year old but instantly the long frame and ability to handle the ball one on one or attacking off ball screens to comfortably make plays is evident. The competition in the video isn’t exactly men’s league level but Souleymane’s comfort in handling the ball is eye popping as is his body control going towards the rim extending to finish. The jumper doesn’t release quickly (at 6-foot-8 he gets some leeway with a slower release because he can easily see over the top of his defender) but the form is solid and this is a year ago, so you know everything has advanced greatly since this video was taken. Very interesting prospect.
What’s Next…Souleymane’s team plays on the Adidas circuit and Adidas teams are plying in qualifying regionals this weekend.
The Verdict…When you look at the old video, hear about his progress, and think about what Minnesota recruits, this is an interesting player. Not to mention the Gophers have talent at his position so the Gophers will have time to allow him to learn a year or two playing behind the threes in front of him. It will be interesting to see how his recruitment progresses but at this point it seems like Minnesota got in early on another high potential prospect.