Mali native and highly touted forward Ibrahim Doumbia has committed to play basketball for head coach Frank Martin and the South Carolina Gamecocks, according to Andrew Slater of 247Sports.
Slater chose South Carolina over the likes of SEC rivals Tennessee and Florida, a big win for a Gamecocks’ basketball program that is starved for success. Doumbia is just the latest piece that South Carolina has added while Martin’s group could be prepared to make a rise in the conference and qualify for the NCAA Tournament sooner rather than later.
The 6-8 Doumbia, who plays his high school basketball at Miami Country Day and is set to graduate in 2017, is a three-star prospect listed as the 245th best prospect in the country and 58th at his position, according to 247Sports.
“His strength is that number one he’s a tremendous athlete at his size. He’s frankly above and beyond that,” said Hugo De La Rosa, Doumbia’s high school coach. “He’s developed an IQ to the game and he understands how to play with or without the basketball.”
While Doumbia plays center for his high school squad, he also has the tools to develop into a wing.
“As a wing, I don’t think there’s a comparable player in all of Florida and I’d even go so far as to say maybe even off the East Coast that has the upper body as a wing that Ibrahim has,” said De La Rosa. “Matching his athleticism, matching his size, that player. I think he’s very unique in that sense.”
Doumbia has averaged 19 points, 13.5 rebounds and 3.5 blocks per game for Miami Country Day.
He represented Mali in the FIBA Africa U-18 Championships this past season, passing up AAU ball for the opportunity to play for his home nation. Doumbia notably led Mali to the bronze medal in the tournament.