The evening before having to fly out to Phoenix, AZ where he would get acquainted with his new home and teammates as a Phoenix Sun. Alex Oriakhi a 6’9″ PF stopped by the Reggie Lewis Center in Roxbury, Ma with Trainer/Coach Tyron Boswell to work on some conditioning and perimeter skill work. Oriakhi a Lowell, Ma resident was once a McDonald’s All American and also starred on the 2010-11 UCONN Mens basketball championship team. Oriakhi would transfer to Missouri for his senior season where he showed a much improved low post game. Oriakhi stuck around to give some advice to the youth in attendance at his workout. July Live Period is upon us, and the young players had a number of questions for Mr. Oriakhi. There’s no days off of Alex from what you can see in this feature
Oriakhi, a 6’9″ post player, played at the Tilton School in Tilton, New Hampshire. As a senior, Alex was named a McDonald’s All-American, a Parade All-American and the Gatorade player of the year for New Hampshire.
Following his high school career, Oriakhi chose the University of Connecticut to play for Hall of Fame coach Jim Calhoun. Alex started most of his freshman season, averaging 5.0 points and 6.6 rebounds per game. At the close of the season, he was named to the Big East Conference all-rookie team.
As a sophomore, Oriakhi raised his game to average 9.9 points, 8.7 rebounds (second in the Big East) and 1.6 blocks per game (7th in the Big East). Oriahki was the main post presence for the Huskies when they won the 2011 Big East Tournament and the 2011 NCAA Men’s Tournament. As a junior, Oriakhi saw his minutes decrease with the addition of highly recruited freshman Andre Drummond. Oriakhi’s production dropped as well, as he averaged 6.7 points and 4.8 rebounds per game.
After the season, Oriakhi announced his intentions to transfer to another school, citing the Huskies’ 2013 ban on postseason play. He will be eligible to play for his new school during the 2012–13 season. Ultimately Oriakhi transferred to Missouri where he would team up with AAU teammate Phil Pressey , seems like things have paid off, Oriakhi has made great improvements with his body as well as his workout with Pro/Elite skills trainer KP.
Look for Alex to play a major role, as Missouri looks to make another run towards the NCAA tournament.
Alex Oriakhi is a New England product, and proud of it, before Alex became a member of the 2011 National championship UConn Huskies. Alex was the 2009 Gatorade Player of the Year in New Hampshire, while at the Tilton School and a McDonald’s All-American as well as a Jordan Brand All-American team member. Not to mention a 2009 National prep school championship, a 2006 16u AAU national championship with BABC to add to his resume, so it s safe to say like his home resident of Mass, Alex can be called Mr. Title Town.
We caught up with Alex during his preseason condition to see how things where going and how he prepared for this upcoming season.
Hey Alex how are things going this year?
When does the offseason start for you, what did you work on the most this preseason?
“Preseason started two weeks after we won the championship, no time for rest, now that we won people are going to be coming at us, so we have to work 10x harder.”
What made you commit to UConn, as just a sophomore in high school?
“The location played a big part because it’s only an hour and half away from Mass so my family would able to come to all my games. And the amount of NBA Pros the produced played a huge part as well.”
How are you dealing with the departure of your good friend Jamal Coombs, I know you guys have been best friends since the high school days?
“It’s a little bit weired we been playing together since age 14, but he made the right choice for his future and I wish him the best of luck, But we still speak on the phone every other day.”
What was the biggest adjustment you had to make coming into college from such as competitive league such as the NEPSAC?
“The speed of the game and the competion, every one is just as good or better then you, so you have to be ready for the challenge. What you did in high school doesn’t matter once you get to college, because everyone works just as hard as you if not harder.”
How is Calhoun as a coach, is he just like the outside assumes hard nose, take no prisoners type of coach?
“He pushes you to a level that you wouldn’t believe you could reach; if I go for a rebound and 3 people are boxing me out he is expecting me to get that rebound. So yes he is hard nosed and well respected, he has taught me allot.”
How excited are you about adding Andre Drummond to your already big time frontcourt?
“Real excited, we’re already a great team but to ad Dre was a bonus, he helps us in so many different ways.”
Who is your all time favorite point guard to play with and why?
“Phil Presley from Missouri (sorry Kemba) He gave me the ball in scoring position every time, he is one of my best friends we had a strong bond on and off the court.”
MY PRO COMPARISON – Al Horford
FAVORITE TV SHOW – The Wayne’s bros
GAME DAY MUSIC – Lil Wayne, Ace Hood, Cassidy
THREE PEOPLE I’D LIKE TO MEET- I would say Obama but I meet him al ready, Laura London, Michael Jordan
MY PHONE – Iphone 4
MY FAVORITE MOVIE – Shottas
FAVORITE NBA TEAM – Boston Celtics
FAVORITE ATHLETE – Amare Stoudemire
FAVORITE VIDEO GAME – FIFA Soccer
Finish the sentence: You would never know but i know how to
Thanks for having me Hoop Dreams good look to the next generation ! stay Hungry
– Alex O.