Western Kentucky University mens basketball 2018-19
Courtesy WKU Athletics

WKU Hilltopper Basketball freshman center Charles Bassey officially received an invitation Wednesday to next week’s 2019 NBA Draft Combine.

The NBA Draft Combine is a first step for a select group of NBA hopefuls. Bassey was one of 66 players selected to attend the combine, as well as one of 24 college freshmen.

The NBA Draft Combine features 5-on-5 games as well as shooting and strength and agility drills at Quest Multisport in Chicago on Thursday, May 16 and Friday, May 17. ESPN2 will provide coverage both days from 2-6 p.m. CT.

Bassey previously declared for the NBA Draft without signing with an agent in order to receive evaluation, while retaining his NCAA eligibility and the option to return to school.

The 6-foot-11, 245-pound native of Lagos, Nigeria, averaged 14.6 points, 10 rebounds, and 2.4 blocks in his first season for the Hilltoppers while shooting 62.7 percent from the field.

Western Kentucky basketball 2018-19
Western Kentucky Hilltoppers center Charles Bassey (23) JANUARY 21, 2019 MARSHALL VS WKU

He led Conference USA in double-doubles (17) and ranked in the top 30 nationally in double-doubles, field-goal percentage, blocks per game, total blocks, rebounds per game, defensive rebounds per game and total rebounds while competing as one of the top-10 youngest players in the country.

He became just the second freshmen in the country since 1992 – along with current NBA star Anthony Davis – to average at least 14 points, 10 rebounds and two blocks while shooting at least 60 percent overall.

Bassey was named a Freshman All-American and was 1 of 5 national finalists – including the only freshman – for the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award.

He became the second player in Conference USA history to win both C-USA Freshman of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year in the same season, and he was also named to the All-C-USA First Team, All-Freshman Team and All-Defensive Team.

How to follow the Hilltoppers: For complete information on WKU Hilltopper Basketball, follow the team’s social media channels, @WKUBasketball on Twitter, @WKUBasketball on Instagram, and WKU Basketball on Facebook.



Zach Greenwell

Associate Director

WKU Athletic Communications/Media Relations


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