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.
NEW HAVEN, Conn. — Like many of his fellow young big men from Mali, Karim Coulibaly came to the United States for a better life through basketball.
When he arrived three years ago, he joined a group of Malians that includes Cheick Diallo, now with the New Orleans Pelicans, Kassoum Yakwe and Boubacar Diakite of St. John’s and Mamadou Doucoure of Rutgers.
“I come to the U.S. do my schoolwork and basketball, ” the 6-foot-9 left-hander from Scotland (PA) Campus said Friday at the National Prep Showcase.
Coulibaly, 16, said Diallo, who attended Our Savior New American School on Long Island before becoming a one-and-done at Kansas, is now a hero in Mali because he’s the first person from that country to reach the NBA.