British Forward Okonkwo Skips Out On Last 2 Years Of College & Enrolls Early At West Virginia
6'9 power forward James Okonkwo was originally in the class of 2023 but has reclassified and will be enrolling at West Virginia this upcoming season, meaning he will start his college career at 17 years old but is going to redshirt during his first year.
Four Star recruit (via Rivals) Okonkwo has had offers from both Rutgers & West Virginia during his sophomore season at Beckley Prep IJNWV, but decided to commit and enrol to West Virginia. He's eligible to do this due to his GCSE's, the NCAA classes the GCSE qualification as a type of GED or High School qualification, which allowed him to start college at 17 years old and bypass his last two years.
“You take your GCSEs and then you go into three different types of an educational system before you can go on to college, - The NCAA translates the GCSE into kind of like a GED or a high school equivalent. There’s a two-path process for kids to be able to go to college in America. They can come to America and take a couple more years or they can go straight as a 16-year-old to college.” - Justin Dempsey (James' Coach)
230 pound 6'9 forward Reading Rockets product only arrived in the US in 2020 by garnered a lot of D1 interest, him being a college athlete a year early will grant access to great facilities, experience, college coaching and ultimately grant his career a higher sealing making him a better finished product by the time he's ready to suit up and play in D1 competition.