Friday, December 26, 2008

Dinka Dunker

Ater Majok is in the house, sitting right behind the UConn bench. Nothing new to report, and there likely won't be for at least another week: the NCAA clearinghouse is on holiday break and won't be back until after New Year's.

Majok has made some trips back and forth from his home in Australia to the States, where he's staying in Washington, D.C. with the sister of Ed Smith, his coach in Australia. He's playing as much pick-up as he can, according to Smith, but even that is limited as to whom he can play against, etc. He's also hitting the weight room and going through individual workouts with Smith.

Majok is upbeat and seems to be handling the long wait for NCAA clearance well. He's still confident he'll suit up for the Huskies this season. Majok said he hopes to be in attendance at Monday night's Big East-opener against Georgetown.

Smith said that Ater's cousin, Majok Majok, is currently playing at South Kent School. A Class of 2010 forward, Majok Majok checks in at 6-foot-8, 235 pounds, according to Smith, and is being courted by, among others, Virginia, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Boston College, Providence and Seton Hall.

Smith also noted that Ater has a 13-year-old cousin back in Australia who is already 6-8. So why is this family so tall? Well, they're not – at least by the standards of their tribe. The Majoks are natives of Sudan and members of the Dinka tribe, the same tribe that spawned 7-foot-7 ex-NBAer Manute Bol.

"They're the tallest people in the world," Smith said.

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