#30 RANKED PLAYER IN THE COUNTRY (CLASS OF 2017)
STAR RANKING: 4 STARS
WEIGHT: 195 POUNDS
POSITION: SMALL FORWARD
HIGH SCHOOL: ESPERANZA HIGH SCHOOL IN CALIFORNIA
CHOSE STANFORD OVER: FRESNO STATE, UTAH STATE, AMONG OTHERS
PLAYER SUMMARY: Stanford has a proud basketball history. While the team has struggled in the past few seasons, things are starting to look up for the Cardinal. They got a huge commitment when Kezie Okpala stated his pledge to Stanford.
As good as a basketball player as Okpala is, he is even a better student. He has over a 4.0GPA and even had a Dartmouth offer. He was a late bloomer on the recruiting scene as he grew 8 inches in the last few years.
The 6’8″ small forward has prototypical size for the position and very long arms. He impressed us with his ability to handle the ball. In high school, he was phenomenal at getting to the rim and finishing. We were also impressed with his ball-handling ability. Okpala shows really nice court-vision and always seems to make the correct play.
The 4-star recruit has nice shooting mechanics with a real smooth release. He is an overall inconsistent shooter at this point in his development. He can create his own shot because of his height and ball-handling abilities. However, in order for opposing defenses to play him honest, he must hone in on his shooting. He needs to become a more consistent shooter. If he can accomplish this, his game will go to another level.
While being a real smooth athlete, he is going to have to put on weight to handle the rigors of the PAC-12 Conference. Getting into the weight room is a must. Once he eventually gains weight, we believe he can become a better rebounder than he is at this point.
After evaluating Kezie Okpala, we are very surprised that he had only a few scholarship offers. He has a great basketball body with an intriguing skill-set. He has a lot of potential, although he is a few years away from reaching it.
As previously said, he is a very good ball-handler, passer, and athlete who sports a great deal of upside. He will need to improve his outside shooting and gain weight/strength. In our opinion, Stanford got a steal in Okpala. As the Cardinal look to rebuild and compete in the PAC-12, look for Kezie Okpala to be one of the foundation players along with Kodye Pugh. The future looks bright for the Cardinal and Okpala.
BELOW ARE HIGHLIGHTS OF KEZIE OKPALA
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