Charles Bassey invited to 2019 NBA Draft Combine

Charles Bassey (23) embraces head coach Rick Stansbury after defeating 15th-ranked Wisconsin in Diddle Arena Dec. 29 in Bowling Green. Bassey had 19 points and six rebounds in the win. 

Alec Jessie

WKU basketball center Charles Bassey has officially received an invitation to participate in the 2019 NBA Draft Combine next week.

The NBA released a list of the 66 players invited to the event Wednesday afternoon, and Bassey was among the 24 college freshmen that got an invitation to showcase their skills to pro scouts.

The Nigeria native starred in his freshman season on the Hill. Bassey averaged 14.6 points, 10 rebounds and 2.4 blocks a game. He showed up in the biggest matchups throughout the season, averaging 17.8 points, 10.4 rebounds, 2.6 blocks and 1.4 steals against notable stars like Ethan Happ, Daniel Gafford, Tacko Fall, Sagaba Konate and Noah Dickerson.

Bassey also brought in numerous awards. He racked up 10 Conference USA Freshman of the Week Awards, he was the C-USA Freshman of the Year, he was selected on the All-C-USA First Team, he was on the C-USA All-Defensive Team and the C-USA All-Freshman Team.

He set the program’s freshman block record, and he scored the second-most points by a freshman at WKU. He finished as a top-five finalist for the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center of the Year Award.

“I’m proud for him,” Head coach Rick Stansbury said prior to the C-USA Tournament. “He came in and made the adjustment. He’s got a long way to go, but for him to come in and accomplish what he’s done, he deserves a lot of credit for that.”

Bassey, who previously announced he would not sign with an agent, has until May 29 to decide if his name will remain in the NBA Draft pool. Should he choose to return to WKU for his sophomore season, he will maintain his NCAA eligibility.

The NBA Draft Combine will take place at Quest Multisport in Chicago next Thursday and Friday, while the annual NBA Draft will be held at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn on June 20.

Reporter Alec Jessie can be reached at 270-745-6291 and [email protected]. Follow Alec on Twitter at @Alec_Jessie.