As the first player from the state of Kansas ever to be drafted into the NBA, Udoka Azubuike has made history. His journey from becoming one of the top players in high school to playing at the highest level of basketball in the world has been nothing short of inspiring to his teammates and fans alike. Find out how Udoka went from living in Nigeria as a child to dominating on the court today. Udoka Azubuike: The Nigerian American Basketball Star Making History


Born in 1996, Udoka’s Nigerian and American ancestry has seen him grow up to be a talented basketball player. He first played basketball as a child, joining an organized team when he was eight years old. When he went to college, he enrolled at the University of Kansas where he starred for four seasons as both a forward and center. In 2017, he declared for the NBA draft and was selected with the 24th overall pick by the Utah Jazz. Udoka Azubuike: The Nigerian American Basketball Star Making History

Udoka Azubuike: The Nigerian American Basketball Star Making History
Udoka Azubuike: The Nigerian American Basketball Star Making History


Azubuike was born in New York City to parents who had immigrated from Nigeria. His father was a pastor in the Bronx and his mother was a professor of mathematics at Long Island University. Growing up, he attended Bishop Loughlin Memorial High School in Brooklyn, New York and played basketball there until his sophomore year when he transferred to Word of God Christian Academy in Raleigh, North Carolina. He played high school basketball for the Word of God Wolves.


Azubuike was born in the small town of New Bern, North Carolina. His parents are both from Nigeria and his father attended college at Old Dominion University, a short drive from where Udoka grew up.

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Physical info

Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Udoka immigrated to the United States at a young age and quickly found success on the basketball court. He played for his high school team and led them to a state championship win during his senior year. Upon entering college, he helped his Kansas Jayhawks reach three straight Final Fours by playing both power forward and center positions with a versatile game that allows him to score from anywhere on the court.


Azubuike was drafted by the Dallas Mavericks with the 33rd overall pick in the 2018 NBA draft. He was then traded to the Utah Jazz and signed a rookie scale contract with them on July 8, 2018. On November 27, he made his NBA debut, recording 2 points and 3 rebounds in 12 minutes off the bench. On December 11, he scored 16 points on 7 of 10 shooting against San Antonio Spurs center Pau Gasol.


National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Award for Most Improved Player (2016)

BIG 12 Conference Defensive Player of the Year (2017)

BIG 12 Conference All-Defensive Team Member (2017)

BIG 12 Conference All-Newcomer Team Member (2015)

KANSAS MEN’S BASKETBALL ALLTIME RANKINGS Leader, Blocked Shots Per Game Average, Defensive Rebounds Per Game Average, Double-Doubles, Games Played.

Udoka Azubuike: The Nigerian American Basketball Star Making History
Udoka Azubuike: The Nigerian American Basketball Star Making History

Net worth

In a relatively short period of time, Udoka has had an extraordinary basketball career that has seen him rise from the high school ranks to NBA player in just two years. He joined the Jayhawks as a freshman in 2017 and led Kansas to the 2018 Big 12 championship, scoring 25 points and grabbing 15 rebounds against West Virginia for his first title. His breakthrough season was also pivotal for another reason: it ended with Udoka becoming the first African-born player drafted into the NBA in 50 years.

sweetest time

Although Udoka was raised in the United States, his name means Joy has come in Igbo. When he committed to play for Kansas, he became the first Nigerian American to play Division I basketball at a major university. Udoka saw his first game time in the Jayhawks’ victory over Colorado State on November 15th, 2017, where he had seven points and two assists.

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first love

Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Udoka Azubuike grew up playing basketball but loved soccer too. When it came time to choose between which sport he wanted to pursue full-time, he chose the hardwood over the pitch and made history. In 2018, Azubuike became the first Nigerian NBA player.

first success

In 2015, Udoka made history by becoming the first African to be drafted in the NBA. From Nigeria to Kansas, he has shown great commitment and dedication as a player and an ambassador of both countries. Currently playing for the Utah Jazz, this rising star is currently making headlines as he becomes an ambassador for immigrant success stories in America.

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dearest person

Growing up in Dallas, Texas, Udoka attended U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado for a postgraduate year and then accepted a scholarship to play basketball at the University of Kansas. Utilizing his long wingspan and 7-foot frame, he’s been able to dominate the defensive end of the court since he arrived at KU as a freshman. With hard work and determination from his family, he established himself as one of the top defensive players in college basketball.

Personal Life

In August 2019, Udoka Azubuike agreed to a two-year contract with the Utah Jazz. Udoka has become the first player born in Nigeria to play in the NBA and he is one of the few players of African descent playing basketball professionally in America.

Udoka Azubuike: The Nigerian American Basketball Star Making History
Udoka Azubuike: The Nigerian American Basketball Star Making History

Professional Career

Azubuike started his collegiate career with the University of Kansas in 2016. He was a starter on the Jayhawks team that won both the Big 12 and NCAA tournaments that year. In 2017, he earned first-team All-Big 12 honors as well as second-team All-America honors. He would leave for the 2018 NBA Draft before his junior season, where he was selected with the 54th overall pick by the Dallas Mavericks.

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Awards And Achievements

• Won the 2017 NCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player award • Finished career with 41 double-double performances, more than any other player in Kansas history. • Earned a bronze medal at the 2015 World University Games.

Quick Facts

Nigerian-American professional basketball player for the Utah Jazz of the National Basketball Association. Averaged 10.1 points and 5.4 rebounds per game in college basketball for Kansas Jayhawks


Q. What is your favorite NBA team?

A. My favorite NBA team is the Utah Jazz!

Q. How does it feel to be the first Nigerian-American in the NBA?

A. It feels really great and special to be a pioneer and show other young kids that they can make it if they work hard enough. I hope one day there will be many more!

What is udoka azubuike salary?

As the starting center for the Kansas Jayhawks, Udoka Azubuike contributed significantly to his team. However, what really helped him stand out was his improved defense skills. He is expected to be one of the top NBA prospects from the 2019 class.

Udoka Azubuike: The Nigerian American Basketball Star Making History

Where is udoka azubuike E from?

Not too many international players have been drafted into the NBA, but Udoka Timothy Azubuike is looking to change that. He grew up in Lagos, Nigeria and was recruited by the University of Kansas where he made history with his other fellow Jayhawks as they won their 14th straight conference title.

Is Azubuike in the NBA?

After starring at Kansas and leading the Jayhawks to their first NCAA title since 2008, Azubuike declared for the NBA draft and was taken by the Utah Jazz with the 33rd overall pick. He had a rather lackluster rookie season in which he averaged 6.8 points per game on 45% shooting from the field, but it was during this time that his teammates raved about his work ethic and dedication to improving.

How old is udoka Azubuike?

At the ripe age of 24, Udoka is an up and coming star in the NBA. After excelling as a freshman at Kansas, where he averaged 11.4 points and 5.6 rebounds per game, Udoka entered his sophomore year poised to be one of the best players in college basketball.

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