Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Odegua Oigbokie: "ODU wanted me first"

Odegua Oigbokie
Initially, we weren't sure how to start a conversation with the latest player to verbally commit to Old Dominion for the Class of 2013.

We certainly didn't want to open by pronouncing the young lady's name wrong. But when that name is Odegua Oigbokie, odds are we were about to do just that.

Fortunately for us, Oigbokie tossed us a lifeline.

"O-day-gwah Oy-boo-key," Oigbokie phoneticized. "The (second) 'G' is silent."

Once the hard part was out of the way, it became pretty easy to get to know the 6-1 pride of Ridgeway High in Memphis, Tenn.

How often would you say your name is mispronounced?

Probably about half the time. (Odegua) means "The Right One." My dad's mother named me. My dad is from Nigeria.

So, why Old Dominion?

Because ODU wanted me first, and they seemed like they really, really wanted me. They treated me like I was their No. 1 person. It made me feel so special.

In one word, ODU coach Karen Barefoot is ...


That was too easy. Hit us up with a few more words.

She's very loving, a good coach, and someone who really cares about the game of basketball.

Assistants do a lot of the heavy lifting in recruiting. Which ODU assistant did you make the best connection with?

Coach Mox (Amaka Agugua). She's cool, and she really tried to get to know me first. She helped me go through the recruiting process. I feel like I can go to her for anything.

You visited ODU last weekend. Your impressions?

It was perfect. Great weather, the campus was nice... I loved everything.

You weren't here long, but compare Memphis and Norfolk.

Big difference. Down here, it's not so diverse. There's a lot more things to do in Virginia. In Memphis, everything's been taken away or closed down. There's definitely more opportunities in Virginia than Memphis.

Sounds like you're ready to come right now. We've obviously never seen you play. Is there an NBA/WNBA player people tell you your game reminds them of?

Not really. Sometimes people say the Ogwumikes, because of my name and a little in how I play.

Is there a part of your game you feel is college-ready right now?

Probably rebounding and getting the putbacks, the and-ones.

Sure sounds like an Ogwumike. Who are your personal favorite players?

Candace Parker and Kevin Durant.

What will you be working really hard on to get ready for ODU?

My outside game, dribbling, learning to shoot faster.

You're also on the volleyball team at Ridgeway. Does that help your basketball?

Definitely, with my timing, jumping, footwork.

Finally, since your name gets mangled so much, do you have a nickname?

Not really. Sometimes people call me O, or Big O, or O-day, or Day-Day. But not really just one.

Don't worry. We'll get Lady Monarchs Nation to work on that.

1 comment:

  1. Clarisse Machanguana
    / Lucienne Berthieu / Hamchétou Maïga, and now Odegua Oigbokie, I like the sound of that name; Huge Smile