Thursday, April 26, 2007

Thabeet is staying for sophomore season!

According to, freshman center, Hasheem Thabeet has decided to stay at Connecticut for his sophomore season.

"I am very excited about next season and returning to UConn for my sophomore year,” said Thabeet. “I look forward to continuing my education as a person and as an athlete. We have all been working very hard since the season ended and will continue doing everything we can to get better each day and have a great season next year. I would also like to express my appreciation to all my fans and those who have taken interest in my career here at UConn. I want to especially thank my fans in Tanzania who continue to send me volumes of letters of support. I am glad I can be a role model figure to the youth in Tanzania, many of whom do not have the opportunities that I have been given.”

“We obviously have high expectations for Hasheem in the coming year,” said UConn coach Jim Calhoun. “He had a very good freshman year for us and showed great improvement as the year went on. He has the opportunity to take it to the next level during this coming summer and heading into next season and can really be a big part of our team achieving success in the future.”

The 7'3" 255 lb center from Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, started in all 31 games for the Huskies and scored 6.3 points per game, 6.4 rebounds per game and 3.8 blocks per game. The 3.8 BPG was good enough to rank 1st in the Big East and 3rd in the Nation, he had a total of 119 blocks, ranking behind only one other freshman in UConn history, as Emeka Okafor totaled 138 blocks in 2001-02. He matched the UConn single game record of 10 blocked shots in the win over Texas Southern, equaling the mark held by Emeka Okafor and Donyell Marshall. He also blocked nine shots in the win over Fairfield and was named to the all-tournament team of the Hispanic College Fund Classic. But he has a lot of work to do this offseason, such as bulking up, he really needs to get stronger and add muscle. He was constantly bullied downlow on both the offensive and defensive boards and if he does get stronger, then we're going to be very tough to score on next season. He has all the potential to be one of the best centers to ever come to UConn, but in the end it's really up to him on how he will be remembered.

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