Burlington’s Mfiondu Kabengele – Hottest Canadian Prospect On The Scene
Mfiondu Kabengele is a prime example of someone who has a relentless pursuit at one’s goals. The standard that he set for himself might have seemed outrageous to some, yet to him it was simply a matter of time before his recruitment exploded.
Kabengele didn’t have the spotlight on him when he arrived at Don Bosco Prep in Indiana, so he continued to push his own bar and now has reached the pinnacle of his recruitment, with programs from the ACC, SEC, Big East and A10 heavy on his trail.
Georgetown and Georgia were two that were in last night to watch him in a win against Kennedy King College.
Coming out of Burlington, Ontario at Corpus Christi, he was a 6’5 wiry forward with a little bit of skill and a lot of potential, he had interest from Low DI programs but no official scholarship offers.
Today he has Florida State, Georgia, Grand Canyon, Boston College and St. Louis who have all been aggressive in recruitment him.
St Bonaventure has also been recruiting this Canadian forward.
It’s safe to say he’s a late bloomer…
During this season at Don Bosco Prep, the beanstalk has sprouted three inches and he now stands at 6’9 with a wingspan of 7’1.
He’s now a bona fide stretch four offensively, using a hook shot inside and fairly consistent mid-range that he mixes up with shot fakes. He can also rebound and block shots very well. His ball handling for his size is an area that is underrated.
While evaluating Mfiondu Kabengele on the AAU circuit with Burlington based, Canada Drive (ISBA), the headliners were his teammates, one who is now a Notre Dame commit, Nikola Djogo, and 6’10 Ivan Cucak who is at Hargrave Military Academy.
While evaluating Kabengele with Corpus Christi in Ontario, Simi Shittu was the star and demanded most of the attention, yet this didn’t burst Kabengele’s bubble.
“I’m so happy for him. As a teammate, I was like, ‘If this young buck is this good now and works this hard, then I need to be doing more,'” Kabengele explained, admiring Shittu’s ability.
“I always knew that I was going to be a D1 athlete, I just didn’t know when it would all pan out for me. Here, I’ve set a high standard and I’m watching things come to fruition.”
There is a great sense of calmness and maturity with this young man, from the way that he carries himself in public to the way he speaks and articulates his thoughts.
He will be studying political science or international affairs in college and has lofty goals of player professionally.
“My dream is to make it to the NBA, and I know that hard work on its own is not going to cut it. I need to go above and beyond.”
After speaking with Kabengele about his past, leading up to this year and how he plans to attack his future plans, he wanted to make sure that others in his position know how to deal with the pressure of being under-recruited as time winds down in senior or during a prep year.
“I wasn’t highly recognized and didn’t get recognition until my prep year. I would tell guys not to be stagnant but to be patient. A lot of kids now may have a bad year and they switch teams back and forth and show no loyalty to the process or their coaches and that’s just wrong.”
This stretch four Canadian Kabengele praised the people around him for helping him along the way from his high school coaches in Ontario, to his Coach Zelmir Stevanovic (IBSA), and his current strength coach Frank Eksten, who worked with the legendary Coach Bob Knight at Indiana.
Don Bosco Prep founder, David Maravilla has watched the growth happen before his eyes.
“He looked like a baby giraffe when he got here, his body changed unbelievably in five months. Most kids, especially big kids, their bodies aren’t where they need to be as they get ready for the next level, but what Mfiondu has done over the past few months is impressive.
Maravilla continued, “We’re fortunate to have him, he came in self-motivated and wanted to prove to everyone that he was a high level NCAA prospect.”
Now a high level NCAA prospect, Kabengele started setting up official visits to some of the high level programs recruiting him; the first which was Florida State, home of fellow Canadian Xavier Rathan-Mayes.
“I met the whole coaching staff. All of them have seen me play at least once and they all feel I could play in the ACC. I got a good perspective on everything, because it’s one thing over the phone but being there in person and talking to the staff and team taught me a lot. My family and I enjoyed the visit.”
His next visit is set for February 13th at Boston College as the Eagles try to secure another Canadian now that Olivier Hanlan has moved on to the pros.
Keep tabs as Burlington’s Mfiondu Kabengele continues to make noise. With the recent growth spurt and ridiculous upside, don’t be surprised to see him on the biggest stages in the future.