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Osabuohien brings energy to Mountaineers

MORGANTOWN, W.Va.–Hard work, perseverance and grit can define a person’s career. That is what has earned some players respect and admiration over the years during their careers at West Virginia.

WVU’s Gabe Osabuohien (3) and TCU’s Kevin Samuel (21) line up for free throws during the second half of the Mountaineers’ win over the Horned Frogs on January 14, 2020.
(Cover Photo Credit: Shanna Rose, BGS)

Gabe Osabuohien is exactly that player. He isn’t putting up big numbers like some of his teammates but he has been crucial to the Mountaineers’ success.

“He can do anything,” sophomore forward Derek Culver said. “He plays defense second to none. He’s working his tail off. He’s communicating, trying to make sure everyone is in the right spots. I feel like if Gabe keeps coming in with the same attitude that he does, he puts the harmony of the team first, the skies the limit for Gabe.”

The 6-foot-7, 235-pound forward is only averaging 1.4 points a game. While that stat may not stand out, he has been a tremendous assist for WVU on the defensive side of the ball and in other areas of the game.

Osabuohien is averaging 3.8 rebounds per contest. On the season, he has 80 deflections, 29 assists, 17 steals, 12 charges and four blocks.

Gabe Osabuohien (3) shakes teammates hands after coming out of the game in the first half of WVU’s win over Austin Peaty.
(Photo Credit: Shanna Rose, BGS)

The Toronto, Ontario native’s defensive abilities has helped bolster the Mountaineers’ defense and earning them national praise. 

“He’s getting a little more attention now but he’s definitely our unsung hero,” senior guard Chase Harler said. “He defends extremely hard, deflections, great passer. He attacked the rim a little tonight. He had a nice little dunk at the end. If he can add a couple points there, he’s already a force but he will definitely be more of a force.”

Osabuohien loves when the crowd gets behind him. 

“To have the crowd cheering me for getting defensive stops, it means a lot,” he said. “It fuels me more to be the best defender I can be.”

Playing for Arkansas last season was an advantage for the junior.

“Last year at Arkansas I played with Daniel Gafford, who’s now in the NBA,” Osabuohien said.” I was able to pass it to him like I am these bigs so that’s where I kind of moved in and fit perfectly playing with two bigs like Daniel where I am able to feed them in the right position.”

In his new home, Osabuohien fits right in.

Shanna Rose
WVU Graduate with a bachelor's in journalism and multimedia journalist. Sports Fan and sports writer. Former WVU News reporter. Contact Shanna on Twitter @SMR1837
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