Tosan Evbuomwan only started playing basketball at 14, turned out for Newcastle’s soccer academy… and rocks pink shoes to honor his mom: Meet the 6-foot-8 British college talent starring in March Madness
Princeton shocked the No. 2 seed to supply the first – and probably not the last – upset of March Madness.
The relentless college basketball pendulum is in full swing with the whole concept rather foreign to British sports fans.
It was very likely a whole new concept for Thursday night’s star when he made the move across the pond.
From Newcastle, England, 6-foot-8 Tosan Evbuomwan, 22, has impressed throughout this college season before delivering on the big stage at Golden 1 Center.
He scored 15 points to eliminate the Pac-12 Tournament champions in the opening round this week, after only taking up the sport at the age of 14.
Princeton’s college basketball player Tosan Evbuomwan is from England and represented GB
The 6-foot-8 player swapped the UK for America after only taking up the sport at the age of 14
Evbuomwan played virtually every other sport as a kid, revealing ‘rugby and soccer dominated my life’ in a Princeton Athletics interview. He even played for the youth academy of Premier League side Newcastle United.
Cricket, track and tennis also were on the agenda before the American hardwood took over.
It was his father Isaac who brought basketball to the fore. ‘He used to play in Nigeria then also when he came over here,’ Evbuomwan told the team’s official website.
‘He introduced me to the sport, we’ve always had the hoop in the garden because of him.’
Evbuomwan set up a basketball team at high school with a friend and his talents meant he was on a fast track to America.
A couple of Newcastle teams, England camps and appearances for Great Britain were added to the resume before the leap to New Jersey.
Newcastle Eagles head coach Ian MacLeod spotted the ability of Evbuomwan and sent an email with highlights attached to multiple American universities in October 2018. Princeton were the ones to lock him down.
‘He was always a super intelligent kid, very coachable, very level headed and to make it to that next step that’s half the battle,’ Eagles managing director Paul Blake told The Chronicle.
He has impressed this college season before delivering on the big stage at Golden 1 Center
‘You have to have that mentality and from what I know of Tosan has that mentality, absolutely. He is a very impressive young man.’
Evbuomwan lost his mom when he was just 11 years old and he admitted he works hard ‘to make her proud’.
The young star instantly catches the eye before tip-off with a pair of light pink sneakers to honor his mom Michelle. His No. 20 jersey is also his way of paying tribute to her.
After starring in the Ivy League and now March Madness, more and more are aware of his unique shoes but ultimately his burgeoning talent.
Read more at DailyMail.co.uk