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Congo Native Jerome Beya Post Pitt Visit: ‘I Can See Myself as a Panther’



As the second week of the live period kicked off on Monday, Pitt hosted three-star Congolese prospect Jerome Beya on an unofficial visit.

“It was great,” Beya told Pittsburgh Sports Now. “I liked the facilities and that it was in a big city. They showed me the stadium that they played in and everything. My favorite part was when I was playing pickup with the Pittsburgh players. I liked playing there with them.”

Beya is a 6-foot-9, 215-pound power forward/center from Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. He moved to the United States during his freshman year of high school and now lives in West Virginia, where he plays his high school ball for Teays Valley Christian School.

A high-major prospect, Beya holds offers from Pitt, Illinois, Wake Forest, West Virginia, Oregon, and more. While he said that all of those schools and some more are still in the mix in his recruitment, Pitt has been showing interest for years now, and this was the second time he has seen the campus.

“Of course,” he said when asked if he can picture himself playing at Pitt. “I can see myself as a Panther in the future.”

While Beya said that he did get to meet head coach Jeff Capel, he was led around the campus mostly by Assistant Coach Jason Capel. Ever since picking up an offer from Pitt back in late August of 2020, Beya has developed a solid relationship with both Capel brothers and is appreciative of how they have treated him.

“We have a good relationship,” he stated. “They usually call, they usually check on me, see how I am doing. Sometimes it is with my high school team and sometimes with my AAU team. They talk to the coaches just to make sure that I am being treated the way I should, the way I deserve to be treated. I would say we have a good relationship, and I like them, because they’re good guys too.”

Beya took the trip up to Pittsburgh with his host father and his brother, and quickly took notice to the style of the campus buildings.

“The school kind of looks like the school from the Harry Potter movies,” Beya said, laughing. “That was cool, that was cool. I liked that.”

While he still has plenty of room to fill in and add on muscle, Beya is already a very physical player and excels at finishing through contact. He is a terrific passer out of the post, and has vision that most big men don’t. However, in addition to all of those skills, there is one thing that he always hears when he asks coaches what they like about his game.

“I asked that same question to three different coaches, and they all said my motor,” he said when asked what his best strength is on the court. “My motor is a big part of my game because I can be really active and vocal, and you can feel my presence on defense. That is the only way I can describe my game. That doesn’t mean that I can’t score. I am going to dunk on you too.”

At the moment, he does not know exactly when he will be committing to a school, but says it will most likely come after next season.

“Right now, I am focusing on getting better,” he said. “Maybe next year, after my senior year, I am going to be ready just by seeing how good I am and seeing how I evolved, Right after that, I think I am going to be ready and see how I can fit into each college.”

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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