One of the effects of a coaching change is you can’t really be sure how the team will look on the court under the new head coach. This is amplified for Shaka Smart as he takes over as head coach of Marquette men’s basketball. Not only is he new to the team, but the recent addition of Darryl Morsell gives the Golden Eagles NINE players that were not on the 2020-21 roster.
One of them is Oliver-Maxence Prosper, and how he fits in to Smart’s first roster remains a mystery to those of us who spend way too much time watching highlight clips that the team puts up on Twitter. But Prosper has a good reason for not showing up in those highlight clips! Instead of enrolling at Marquette for summer school, the 6’8”, 220 pound transfer from Clemson has been training and preparing to represent his home country of Canada in the 2021 FIBA U19 World Cup.
No matter how that ends up going for Canada — although they are the #2 ranked U19 team in the world — it will be a great experience for Prosper, and if we’re lucky, a great opportunity to see what he might be able to do on the court for Marquette. Because FIBA just likes making sure you can watch their tournaments, we’ll be able to watch Prosper and Team Canada in action on YouTube!
When I put this together the other day, there were “Watch on YouTube” links all over the official FIBA page for the tournament…. and those are not there now. The links are also not listed in the upcoming streaming videos on FIBA’s YouTube page but I originally thought that was thanks to all of the Olympic qualifying events also going on right now. But we’ll cross our fingers that the videos will be there eventually, and we’ll embed them into this article as necessary.
UPDATE: The streaming links are live! Huzzah!
The 2021 U19 World Cup is a a 16 team event, and each team will have three group play games before everyone advances to the knockout round. Canada has been placed into Group A, and that means that they’ll be partnered with Group B for scheduling the knockout round when things get to that point.
Prosper averaged 2.5 points and 1.9 rebounds in just under 10 minutes per appearance in 22 games for Clemson last season. He was a top 100 prospect according to 247 Sports as he started his collegiate career, so it’s safe to say that his first season at the NCAA level was a shade on the underwhelming side.
Here’s the schedule as we know it so far!