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story.lead_photo.caption Arkansas coach Mike Anderson instructs players during practice Friday, March 15, 2018, in Detroit. - Photo by Ben Goff

Center Ibby Ali, who visited Arkansas on Friday, has committed to the Hogs.

Ali (6-10, 235 pounds) signed with Baylor in April, but received a release from his national letter of intent. Utah, Tulane, Syracuse, Georgetown others showed interest.

A native of Nigeria, he began playing basketball in 2014 after arriving in Arkansas. He calls the Natural State home and wants to help Coach Mike Anderson win a championship.

"I chose to be a Razorback because of the opportunities," Ali said. "I had a lot of other options, but choosing to stay home was just really big thing for me. My personal goal here is to obviously get better and to help Coach Anderson win a championship."

It didn't take Ali long after arriving in Arkansas to became a Hog fan.

"I've been wanting to be a Razorback since day one," Ali said. "I've been a Razorback fan since I came here, but going to Fayetteville over the weekend pretty much I would say it sealed it. It was just the right time frame."

He attended Southwest Christian Academy in Little Rock his first two years and his junior year at Little Rock Catholic. Ali averaged 4 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.2 blocks while shooting 50 percent from the field as a senior at Maumelle High School in 2017.

He described what Razorback fans will see next season in Bud Walton Arena.

"They're going to see a 6-10 mobile, athletic big," said Ali, who counts former Razorback Sunday Adebayo as a mentor. "I can knock down the 15-foot jumper and I can rebound pretty well as well as block shots."

Ali becomes the Hogs' eighth member of the 2018 class.

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  • bwmill
    May 14, 2018 at 4:49 p.m.

    This young man could turn out to be a great addition to the team. Let's hope.