CLONDALKIN man Aidan Harris Igiehon made headlines across the USA this week as he announced his commitment to the University of Louisville for next year.
Irish basketball fans across the country were anxiously refreshing their social media feeds from five o’clock last Friday evening for the news, after the Irish NBA prospect revealed he would announce his number one choice from his top four colleges – choices that also included St John’s, Oregon and Kentucky.
The Dublin Lions star, who is known Stateside as The Irish Hulk, announced the news on a live stream from his high school, Lawrence Woodmere Academy, where his mother was also linked in via Skype from Dublin.
The news sees Harris Igiehon become the first Irish basketball player to play in the ACC (Atlantic Coast Conference) and will play home games with the Louisville Cardinals in the famous KFC Yum Center which has a capacity of over 22,000. The 6’ 10 player will be eligible for the NBA draft in 2020.
Speaking at the announcement, he said: “When I first came to the United States, I didn’t imagine myself being here… This is a decision that will potentially change my life and my family’s life forever. Honestly speaking, this is the hardest decision I have ever made.”
Also speaking about the news, his Dublin Lions coach Rob White added: “We are all delighted that Aidan is fortunate enough to have a selection of these great schools.
“Aidan hasn’t stopped working since the day he joined Lions and went to the USA.
He fully deserves this great moment and the many more to come. Dublin Lions are very proud and we look forward to watching him progress.”
Reflecting on why he chose Louisville in the end, Harris Igiehon told 247sport.com: “It’s one thing to be wanted and another thing to be needed and I kind of felt like I was needed when I went on my visit,” Igiehon said.
“Coach [Chris] Mack showed me the roster and the blueprint he had setup. When I went on my official the city embraced me and they kind of like exploded the second I was there.”
“My other officials were nice but the Louisville visit was crazy,” he added. Fans everywhere going crazy and with the basketball team it’s just the beginning. The ability of them to develop players, their staff is well-equipped to develop a player such as myself.”