Since 2012, Jahlil Okafor’s talent shines brightly enough to compete with the shine on the wooden floor of the basketball court, not to mention other players. Since his professional selection in the 2015 NBA Draft, he has played with several teams, with his current franchise – the New Orleans Pelicans – being his third.
Jahlil Okafor was already a hot contender before he was old enough for high school thanks to his talent and superior height. He played college basketball for only one year before signing with the Philadelphia 76ers in 2015. However, he had already won enough awards – including the 2012 FIBA U-17 World Championship MVP – to live up to his claim to be a true hoops hero.
Jahlil Okafor’s Bio
The American was born on December 15, 1995, in Fort Smith, Arkansas. Jahlil has always been incredibly tall, a trait that made him stand out like a sore thumb among his classmates and peers. Due to his family situation, he moved around a few times. First, he attended Rosemont Elementary and later Whitney Young High School.
Jahlil Okafor was involved in some controversy when he was illegally recruited by a men’s basketball team in his early teens. At that time he was in eighth grade. Throughout his time at Whitney Young, Okafor passed through one milestone after another. Due to his rapidly improving game, he was celebrated as the best college basketball player after his freshman season, second only to Jabari Parker. ESPN named him the third-best player in the 2014 class in August 2011.
His second season built on his success as he participated in many mentions, including first-team Class 4A All-State, second-team All-State, second-team Class 4A, and the Underclass All-Americans (ESPN). These recognitions included several from the Chicago Public League Basketball Coaches Association.
The basketball player continued to score points and record a myriad of rebounds and blocks, earning him a place on Sports Illustrated’s list of “Future Game Changers” in June 2012. On February 15, 2013, Whitney Young’s outstanding performance earned him the championship title in the Public League. As a result, he was named to the first team in the All-Public League in 2013.
After an even more successful last season, during which he was named Player of the Year by various committees, Jahlil Okafor transferred to Duke University, where he immediately claimed his claim to the team as Preseason Player of the Year according to CBS Sport, NBC Sports, and other sports networks. At the end of the campaign, he was named ACC Men’s Basketball Player of the Year (the first-ever rookie) after winning six ACC Rookie of the Week awards, among others. This would be his only year with Duke, as he soon declared his intention for the 2015 NBA Draft.
During the exercise, Jahlil was voted third overall by the Philadelphia 76ers. The team started the season in a miserable way and had the worst start in the history of the NBA. Apart from some off-field gimmicks, an injury, and a suspension, Okafor did enough to secure a place in the Rising Stars Challenge of the 2016 NBA All-Star Game weekend and the honor of being the first NBA All-Rookie team.
In the 2016-17 season, he suffered a minor injury and minute games that put him offside for a few games. After missing out on a significant portion of the next season, he was finally transferred to the Brooklyn Nets a week before his 22nd birthday. On his 22nd birthday, he played a few games for the team that started on his birthday. At the end of the season, however, he became an unrestricted free player and signed with the New Orleans Pelicans on August 9, 2018.
Jahlil Okafor has also enjoyed his time as a player for the US national basketball team. He represented the country at the U-16, U-17, and U-19 levels. He was the MVP of the U-17 FIBA competition and saw the United States win the gold medal. At the U-19 World Championship, he led the tournament in field goal difference and was part of the All-Tournament team.
Family: Dad, Siblings
The NBA guard was born by Chukwudi “Chuck” Obika Okafor and Dacresha Lanett Benton. When Jahlil was a child, he divided his time between staying with his mother and father. However, when he was with his mother at the age of 9, she fell ill with bronchitis and died within two weeks, so that he could only be raised by his father and his aunt, Chinyere Okafor Conley.
Through his parents, he has an older sister Jalen and two younger brothers, Jamonte and Ashondre.
Jahlil gets his sports genes from both parents who were basketball players. Both had basketball scholarships to the Carl Albert Star College during the same period. His father had already played for two colleges before his time at Carl Albert.
Who is Jahlil Okafor’s Girlfriend? Daughter
Jahlil, who has Nigerian roots thanks to his grandfather, is together with Lauren Oglensky. Lauren is from Philadelphia and graduated from the University of Arizona in 2014 with a degree in Communication Science. She is currently a cyberspace bikini model, as her photos throughout cyberspace show. Jahlil Okafor has no child from her or any previous relationship.
Height and Weight
The size of the New Orleans player had always been his most striking feature. He was 6 feet 5 inches taller than his father when he was in 7th grade and had added another 2 inches before the end of the following school year. The freakishly tall ballplayer stands at an adult height of 6 feet 11 inches (2.11 m) and holds a weight of 275 lbs (125 kg).