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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.
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Monday / February 26.
  • God’s Gift to Basketball

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    Up until this holiday weekend, my favorite college basketball  name was Just-in’ Love Smith of Siena.

    You can’t beat ‘Just-in’ Love,’ can you?

    Turns out you can.

    My new favorite college basketball name is God’s Gift Achiuwa.

    That’s right. His name is God’s Gift and he’s  a 6-foot-9 Nigerian forward from Erie Community College in Buffalo, N.Y. He is being recruited by St. John’s, among others.

    “Nigeria is a very, very religious country,” said Joe Boncore, who mentors numerous Nigerian players but has no connection to Achiuwa. “They are devout Catholics. You gotta have religion because where they’re coming from, it’s pretty bad.”

    God’s Gift was named a Third Team Division II All-American by the National Junior College Athletic Association. He was previously named the Region III co-Player of the Year and helped lead Erie to an all-time best 27-2 record last season. He averaged a double-double of 13 points and 13.4 rebounds, while blocking 2.1 shots per game.

    Imagine the possibilities if he landed at St. John’s in the Big East.

    “God’s Gift takes the floor at Madison Square Garden.”

    “I’m God’s Gift to basketball and I’ll be taking on Villanova and Georgetown this season.”

    “There goes God’s Gift, throwing down a dunk on South Florida.”

    And we can only hope that one day we will hear David Stern say…”And with the 15th pick in the NBA Draft, the New York Knicks select ‘God’s Gift.'”

    Even LeBron can’t promise that.

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    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.

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