Obi Emegano transfers to ORU
BY MIKE BROWN World Sports Writer
Monday, June 04, 2012
6/04/12 at 7:30 PM
After helping Western Illinois upset Oral Roberts University in the Summit League basketball championships, Obi Emegano decided he wanted to play the remainder of his college career closer to home.
The 6-foot-3, former Edmond Memorial prep standout has transferred to play for the Golden Eagles, he confirmed Monday.
He played all 33 games for the Leathernecks last season, averaging 13.1 points per and 3.9 rebounds game. He helped lead WIU to its first winning season (18-15) in 13 years, and was named to the Summit League’s all-newcomer team.
“It’s a great pickup for us,” ORU head coach Scott Sutton said. “He had an outstanding freshman year at Western Illinois. We played them three times and watched him a bunch on tape, and he’s just a winner. He’s tough, very mature, and comes from a great family. I think it’s a great fit all the way around.”
WIU upset ORU 54-53 in the Summit League semifinals and took South Dakota State to overtime before losing in the championship game.
Most of the same players from that team return. Emegano said he had nothing against the program or WIU head coach Jim Molinari, but transferring to ORU will give him more opportunities to play before family and friends.
"Coach `Mo' has been great to me. He took a chance on me when not many people would. I appreciate everything they've done for me, but just felt this was a better decision for me," he said.
WIU and Northeastern (La.) State were the only Division I schools to offer Emegano a scholarship after he helped lead Edmond Memorial to the Class 6A title in 2011.
In the Leathernecks' February game at the Mabee Center, Emegano scored 17 points as his parents, relatives and former high school teammates cheered him on.
“I looked forward to that game, but with (ORU) leaving the Summit League, it meant I was gonna have one less chance to play in front of my family,” he said.
ORU plays its first season in the Southland Conference in 2012-13.
Emegano must sit out the 2012-13 season as part of his transfer requirements and will have three years of eligibility remaining.