Paris JC center Nouhoum Bocoum to visit UNT this weekend

Nouhoum Bocoum (Paris JC)

UNT has quickly shifted gears following the departure of centers Kelvin Gaines and Keith Coleman and will welcome a well-traveled junior college post player in on an official visit this weekend.

Nouhoum Bocoum, a 6-foot-10 center from Paris JC, will arrive in Denton late tomorrow and on Friday will begin his official visit that will last through the weekend.

The third team All-Region XIV selection averaged 9.9 points and 6.2 rebounds a game last season while playing for former UNT assistant Chuck Taylor.

Bocoum has cut the list of schools he is considering to UNT, Eastern Michigan and Houston. He will visit Eastern Michigan and then Houston immediately after visiting UNT.

The late signing period begins April 16.

“After speaking to [UNT coach Tony] Benford and the staff, they know how good I can be,” Bocoum said. “I can see myself playing there the next two years.

“When me and coach Benford talked, he said he wants me to be a force down low, rebound and defend. He wants to have an inside-out attack on offense.”

UNT has a scholarship open following the departure of Coleman and appears to be targeting Bocoum.

UNT has been recruiting Bocoum for the last two months.

Bocoum said he is looking for a place where he can settle in for his final two years of college after a career that has taken him across the country. The native of New York played at Beacon Prep in Georgia and then played a season at Albany (Ga.) Tech before spending a year at Paris JC.

“I am wide open,” Bocoum said. “I haven’t even sat down with my dad. I will talk with coach Taylor and a few of my mentors back home and then decide.”

While Bocoum will wait to see each school that is recruiting him up close before signing, he will begin his visit with a good feel for UNT, its program and Benford.

“Coach Benford is a good guy,” Bocoum said. “I feel like I can trust him with my next two years. I want to help where ever I go the next two seasons and I feel like I could help UNT.”

Benford said following the departure of Coleman that he wants to play an up-tempo style in his third season at the school and plans to have at least one center on the roster who can fit into that type of system.

Bocoum believes he can be that type of player.

“I can fit in with anyone,” Bocoum said. “I expect to have a really big summer getting into shape and getting up and down the court better.

“We ran the floor sometimes at Paris. We played a lot of different ways. If we had to run, we ran. If we had to slow it down, we could do that as well.”

Paris won the Region XIV title last season and advanced to the NJCAA national tournament.

UNT finished 16-16 in its third season under Benford, who could be looking to add one more front court player to an incoming class that already includes 6-foot-6 Carter forward Jeremy Combs and Muhammed Ahmed, a 6-foot-7 forward from Gillette College in Wyoming. Greg Wesley, a 6-foot-7 forward who sat out last season while working to become academically eligible, is also expected to make an impact for the Mean Green next season.

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