Orangeville Prep’s (Canada) Jeff Ngandu became the third member of Seton Hall’s 2020 recruiting class Friday night after announcing his commitment to the Pirates via his social media platforms.
Here’s the basics on Seton Hall’s newest commit:
- Name: Jeff Ngandu
- Position: Center
- Height, Weight: 6-foot-9, 220 pounds
- Hometown: Mono, Ontario, Canada
Ngandu committed to Seton Hall over Big East rivals Georgetown as well as Arizona State, the University of Cincinnati, Kansas State, Louisiana State University, North Carolina State, Oklahoma University, Western Kentucky and West Virginia.
Having a big man under 7-foot might come as a shock to Seton Hall fans after a year with Ike Obiagu and Romaro Gill playing center, but Ngandu can still deliver in the paint. He looks more comfortable on the ball than Obiagu did last season, and that can provide Seton Hall with another reliable presence down low in attack.
His decision making and spatial awareness show promise to be a decent creative force to work off as well. Ngandu is quick to identify pick and rolls, so I imagine the Pirates will become much more efficient at playing with the ball closer to net with their new big man on the court.
Ngandu is undoubtedly more athletic than Obiagu as well. He moves in traffic with more ease and looks confident claiming rebounds and going up for a basket from low. He has the potential to be a solid rim-running, shot-blocking center for the Pirates and can eclipse Obiagu by his sophomore year.
That being said, Ngandu still needs to earn his spot on the team. I think he will see a lot more time on the court as Obiagu’s understudy than Obiagu did last year as Gill’s understudy. His raw talent on the ball needs reps against the Big East’s best competition and throwing him to wolves in certain situations might prove to be beneficial to his growth in the long run.
Obiagu’s fundamentals do not look like they will improve much more between next season and his senior year, so I envision Ngandu taking the starting spot if he has a promising freshman season. He can be a pivotal focal point for a versatile Pirates team that could Jared Rhoden, Tyrese Samuel and Takal Molson leading the lines at the start of the 2021-22 season.