NY superstar has strong Panther ties

It's not too often that a player gets major Division 1 offers in both football and basketball. The player would have to be an amazing athlete. Like somebody that, say, runs a 4.4 in the 40 and has an incredible 40" vertical. One such player exists, and he been dominating the New York City football scene for years.

Nyan Boateng from Abraham Lincoln HS in New York City is a shade over 6'2", according to Lincoln head coach Shawn O'Connor, and checks in at a sturdy 190 pounds.

But, it's Boateng's athleticism at the size that sets him apart. Much has been speculated that Boateng's measureables aren't what he and his coach claim because of his San Antonio Combine results, but don't tell that to Boateng and O'Connor. "I saw him run a 4.4 at the Rex Plex Camp and saw him jump 40 inches," says O'Connor. "All you have to do is watch him dunk a basketball and see that he can fly. I mean, that kid can fly."

Boateng now has eight offers for football as Rutgers and Iowa now join Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Penn State, Maryland, West Virginia, and Michigan State. Many more will follow. When asked who has shown the most interest, Boateng laughs. "Everybody. I get a lot of letters from everybody."

In basketball, Boateng averages 17 points and 8 rebounds a game for one of the top teams in the nation, and a team that has superstar Division 1 prospects Sebastian Telfair, Antonio Pena, and Curtis Kelly. He has already been offered by Memphis.

While he says he is wide open and will probably not decide for a long time, there are factors that he is considering. He says his favorite team growing up was USC, but he says when considering his college destination, "I don't want to go that far".

Another factor arises when asked if any friends or family will have an impact on his decision.

"I am great friends with Chris Taft at Pittsburgh," says Boateng, referring to the Panther basketball star freshman. "He is always trying to get me to come there. That would be great to play with him. I am probably going to go out there and visit him and take a look around the city and the campus to see how it is."

"He is really close with Taft," says O'Connor. "They know each other through Dominic Osei," referring to Boateng's brother, who played at Lincoln, and now plays at Fordham. Boateng and O'Connor say the Panthers are recruiting him very heavily for both sports.

"Walt Harris was supposed to come talk to him in January but he couldn't make it because of coaching changes," says O'Connor.

"I talked to him a few times on the phone," says Boateng, referring to Harris. "And he is coming here on Friday."

But the Panthers' success may actually depend on who is recruiting Boateng for basketball - None other than legendary New York City recruiter Barry "Slice" Rohrssen.

"I know Slice a lot," says Boateng. "He comes around and talks to me. He is a great guy. He is from around here so he knows."

Asked if Boateng would like to play both sports in college he says, "I would love to. I will have to see." He says Pittsburgh has told him that he could play both as has every other team recruiting him.

Another factor favoring Pittsburgh is the city location, something Boateng says he likes, and the passing attack.

"The way they pass is a main reason I like them. Maybe the Pitt fans want another Larry Fitzgerald," laughs Boateng, who says he was a huge fan of the star receiver.


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