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Pitt BB Recruiting

Getting to Know Pitt Target, 7-Foot Paris Native Christ Essandoko

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Throughout the summer, Jeff Capel and his staff have been working hard to find their future big man, watching and offering a number of prospects from the classes of 2022 and 2023. One of the most intriguing prospects on that list is a big 7-footer from France, who goes by the name of Christ Essandoko.

Essandoko, a native of Paris, moved over to the U.S. years ago and currently plays his high school ball for Winston Salem Christian School in North Carolina. The class-of-2022 center stands at an imposing 7-feet tall, weighing 260 pounds.

While at that size he clearly has the upper hand against all of his opponents physically, he says he values his post-up game as well as his passing ability the most out of all of his many skills.

“I can shoot,” Essandoko told Pittsburgh Sports Now. “I can still be more consistent shooting, so that’s what I’m working on this summer. On defense, I can block and alter shots, and can be a hard edge on ball screens.”

With elite size and an ever-expanding array of moves, Essandoko has become a priority for a long list of high-major programs, including Pitt. In late May, Pitt assistant coach Milan Brown ramped up the interest after watching him play at the UAA MDW Showcase, reaching out two-to-three times per week. Then, the head man came into play.

“I’m always in contact with Coach Brown, but Coach Capel offered me,” Essandoko said. “I want to meet the coaching staff, and see what they’re offering. I heard the campus was nice too.”

Essandoko said that Oklahoma, Michigan, Syracuse, Kansas, South Carolina, and Washington are among the schools recruiting him the hardest, but that the ACC is still very intriguing to him.

“The ACC is a big conference,” he added. “A lot of bigs dominate and go to the NBA, so I want to follow that path. I am looking forward to having everything in your hands to get better, individual workouts, weight room, nutritionist, and more.”

He has taken visits to Wake Forest, NC State, and Providence, and says that location will not play a huge role in his decision.

“I’m already far from Paris, so going to a different state is not gonna change a lot.”

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
Duquesne BB

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