Richard Davenport covers recruiting for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He is the host of Recruiting Thursday, a weekly radio show that airs from 7 to 8 p.m. on 92.1 FM in Fayetteville; 93.7 FM in Little Rock; 95.3 FM in Fort Smith; 96.3 FM in Hot Springs; 104.3 FM in Harrison/Mountain Home; and 106.9 FM in Arkadelphia.
The Recruiting Guy:
Southwest Christian Gabriel Osabuohien's recruiting gaining momentum
Forward Gabriel Osabuohien.
Interest in Southwest Christian Academy forward Gabriel Osabuohien is picking up and Arkansas is one of several schools taking a hard look at him.
Razorback head coach Mike Anderson and associate head coach Melvin Watkins visited the school earlier in the week to scout Osabuohien, forward Mladen Armus, 6-10, 215, of Belgrade, Serbia, shooting guard Avery Benson, 6-4, 175 of Springdale and junior point guard Shakur Daniel, 6-5, 170 of Toronto.
Osabuohien, 6-8, 219 pounds, of Toronto has scholarship offers from Murray State and Arkansas- Little Rock while drawing interest from Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa State, Tennessee- Martin and others.
He helped the Lions to the NACA national championship in February. Osabuohien said recruiting is going well.
“It’s good, a ton of coaches are coming in the gym and there’s a lot more coming next week,” Osabuohien said.
Anderson and Watkins seemed to like what they saw.
“They watched a whole practice and after practice they came to me and they said they liked how I was aggressive and they were entertained,” he said. “They said they’re going to stay in touch with me and they’re supposed to call me.”
Southwest Christian Academy Coach Charles Baker was the head coach at Shorter College for five seasons as well an assistant at Colorado, Kansas State, Louisiana Tech, Campbell and Middle Tennessee. He’s baffled by Osabuohien’s lack of offers.
“Let me make it as easy as I can, Gabriel is talented enough to play in any conference in America,” Baker said. “He’s probably more ready to play on the defensive end, but he has a lot of packages on offense that’s in the process of being put together. I say by the time he’s a sophomore in college, people are going to say ‘Wow. Boy that kid can really play’.”
Missouri, Iowa State, Tennessee-Martin and Arkansas are expected to visit the school when the dead period ends April 6 at noon. Osabuohien likes what the Hogs have to offer.
“It’s a great program,” Osabuohien said. “They play fast. I could definitely play fast. The coaches are good and Coach Mike a is a good coach. Great staff and great system. They went far this year. I think in the years to come they have definitely have a chance to win the tournament with the talent coming.”
A trip to Fayetteville is in the works.
“They want me to come up and visit soon,” Osabuohien said.
Osabuohien and teammate and senior guard Avery Benson practiced with the Arkansas All Stars at Real Deal in the Rock Friday night for next weekend’s matchup against the Tennessee All Stars in the Mike Conley Jr. Challenge in Memphis.
“I’m excited to be with them and honored I get to represent a great state and hopefully go there and put a beating on Memphis because we have a real talented team,” he said.
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