In late-August four-star power forward Esa Ahmad cut his list of schools to five programs: Maryland, Ohio State, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Oregon. A highly productive player from Shaker Heights, Ohio, Ahmad averaged 26.5 points and 11.5 rebounds per game as a high school junior.
Wednesday afternoon Ahmad decided where he’ll play his college basketball, as he announced via his Twitter account that he’s committed to West Virginia.
Ahmad took an official visit to West Virginia last weekend, and obviously the program’s efforts throughout Ahmad’s recruitment have paid off in a big way. West Virginia loses just one senior from their front court at the end of the 2014-15 season, but despite the available options that will have eligibility remaining in 2015-16 Ahmad has the talent to work his way into the rotation as a freshman.
With Kevin Noreen (20 starts, 2.0 ppg, 2.7 rpg in 2013-14) being the lone senior, among the players who will have eligibility remaining in 2015-16 are Devin Williams (8.4, 7.2), Nathan Adrian (5.4, 2.9) and three players who did not play for West Virginia last season in Elijah Macon, Jonathan Holton and South Plains College transfer BillyDee Williams.
Ahmad is the third 2015 player to verbally commit to West Virginia, with point guard James “Beetle” Bolden making his pledge in mid-May and center Levi Cook doing so in September 2012.