Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Some lucky college basketball fans next year will get to chant, “Who’s your daddy?,” just like the Serra High School student section did Thursday night.
“That’s my name,” Daddy Ugbede, a 6-foot-7 left-handed senior combo forward from Nigeria, told the Los Angeles Times. “I hear it every game. I like it.”
Ugbede, who we have been writing about here for two years, is now helping Serra make a deep postseason run in Southern California.
Playing against Arizona-bound McDonald’s All-American Grant Jerrett, Ugbede went off for 32 points Thursday as Serra beat La Verne Lutheran, 69-59, in the Southern Section Division 4AA championship basketball game.
“He got him in foul trouble, just had a phenomenal night,” Serra coach Dwan Hurt told SNY.tv by phone.
Ugbede holds offers from Utah, Cal State-Northridge, San Jose State and Duquesne.
St. John’s, Rutgers, George Mason and Niagara have also been out to see Ugbede, but have not offered.
“I think Daddy has a tremendous upside,” Hurt said. “He’s a versatile player, can play inside and out. And for a lack of a better word, he is a beast inside….His wingspan is longer than Emmanuel’s. He has a 7-foot wingspan.”
Emmanuel Ndumanya, a 6-10 junior, had 11 rebounds for Serra, which won their sixth section title in Hurt’s 23 years as coach.
“Tremendous defender,” Hurt said. “He defended Jerrett last night and did an exceptional job. Really kept him off the boards. He’s a good rebounder. I would say he’s farther along defensively and rebounding right now than he is offensively, but he’s a work in progress.”
UCLA, USC and Purdue are among the schools who have been in to see Ndumanya.
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.