SPRINGFIELD — One of the nation’s premier shot blockers, Greenforest, Ga. 7’0 2017 Ikey Obiagu is a game changer at the defensive end and showcased those abilities at the 2017 Bass Pro Tournament of Champions this weekend.
Through the first two games, Obiagu had swatted 17 shots and appeared well on his way to setting a new tournament record for blocks, which was set in 1993 by St. Raymond’s Damon Bonaparte. He blocked 10 shots in the opening round against and added 10 points on five dunks.
He followed with seven blocks against Kickapoo in a consolation round win on Friday and led both teams with 11 rebounds and chipped in six points, on a pair of dunks. He says his game is still raw and his offensive game is a work in progress.
“Mostly my game is to block shots and rebound and that is what keeps me on the floor, and the other parts of my game I am still working on,” Obiagu said.
Obiagu says injuries throughout the summer taught him a lesson in life as he struggled to stay on the court.
“I just had to pick myself up,” he said. “I fell like I am more confident in my offense although I still have a lot of work to do. I am taking everything one step at a time but I see improve from last season to this season.”
He committed to Florida State on Nov. 28 and said at the time the competition in the ACC was a big factor. He is one of five commitments for the Seminoles in the 2017 class and the first ESPN 100 commitment for the Seminoles this class. He joins four-star forwards Raiquan Gray and Wyatt Wilkes, four-star wing Anthony Polite and three-star shooting guard Bryan Trimble Jr.
“The thing that stood out the most for me was coach (Leonard) Hamilton because me and him have been really close,” Obiagu said. “He has been the one that has been recruiting me the longest and I trust him and I know they do a really good job with their bigs.
“They have a really good team coming back next year. It’s not really far from my home and I have been to their campus more than any other. I just feel like I am comfortable there.”
For now, however, Obiagu and his teammates are focused on taking the consolation trophy at the Tournament of Champions and says he is grateful for the opportunity to play in the event.
“It is really great and I know not everybody has this opportunity,” he said. “I am really grateful, as it the whole team, to be in this type of high-level tournament because every day you are playing a great team.
“Every day you are competing at the highest level.”