Nigerian on UT radar

Tennessee's head coach may be looking to a guy named Moses to help lead his program into basketball's Promised Land.

Bruce Pearl admitted this week that he may add a big man in the upcoming spring signing period.

"I think there's still the opportunity for us to bring in one more," the Vol coach said, grinning smugly as he added: "Now you guys (media) are all going to search and try to find out who that is."

A good possibility would be Moses Abraham of Camp Springs Progressive Christian Academy in Temple Hills, Md. He's a 6-9, 235-pounder who grew up in Nigeria.

Tennessee already has one Nigerian on its roster, but 6-7 sophomore Emmanuel Negedu is unlikely to play again due to a serious heart condition. That leaves the Vols with three post prospects - 6-9, 245-pound senior Wayne Chism, 6-10, 270-pound junior Brian Williams and 6-9, 220-pound freshman Kenny Hall.

With Chism down to one month of collegiate eligibility and Williams down to one year, Tennessee could use a post prospect to fill the void created by Negedu's health concern. Abraham would seem to be a highly qualified candidate.

"He's got an unbelievable wingspan," guardian Joe Boncore told Scout.com's Dave Telep. "He can jump out of the gym and he's got range on his shot."

Kentucky, Texas, Florida, Georgetown, Connecticut, Maryland, Arizona State, Rutgers, Miami, LSU, Virginia Commonwealth and Tennessee reportedly have shown interest in Abraham.

The towering Nigerian is quite a story. His mother reportedly died in childbirth, and Moses was preparing for the priesthood when he realized he had a chance to be something special in basketball.

On the subject of recruiting, Pearl was asked this week if he pursued John Jenkins, the Vanderbilt freshman who led all of high school basketball with a 42.3 points-per-game scoring average in 2008-09. Jenkins shot 62 percent from the floor and 47 percent from 3 as a senior at Station Camp High in Hendersonville.

"We recruited John Jenkins," Pearl said, "but with Scotty Hopson on the roster that was it. He looked at Scotty a year in front of him and said, 'Thanks but no thanks.'

"He visited here unofficially as a younger player but, once we had Scotty, that was the end of the recruitment of John Jenkins."


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