34 Oscar Tshiebwe

Oscar Tshiebwe
Oscar Tshiebwe
Hometown (Last School)
Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo (Kennedy Catholic)
2021-22, 2022-23
November 27, 1999

Oscar Tshiebwe was born November 27, 1999, in Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo to Mbuyi and Kaya Rosalie Tshiebwe.  He has five siblings with three brothers, Bevi, Denphin, and Debaba, and two sisters, Cenina and Maggie,  Nicknamed “Big O,” he has a 7-foot-5 wingspan.

In high school, Tshiebwe led Kennedy Catholic High School to a 27-3 record and a 6A state title as a senior. He averaged 23.2 points per game his senior season and tallied 1,480 career points.  Tshiebwe was named the Gatorade  Boys Basketball Player of the Year.  He guided Kennedy Catholic to the Class 1A PIAA state championship as a junior and scored in double figures in every game during his junior campaign.  Tshiebwe averaged 21.3 points, 11.8 rebounds, and 2.4 blocks per game for his AAU squad the ITPS Wildcats.He was a McDonald’s All American and posted a double-double in that game with 12 points and 10 rebounds in 18 minutes.  He was also named to the  Hoop Summit World Team and was ranked a five-star recruit and a top-25 senior.

At West Virginia as a freshman, Tshiebwe averaged 11.2 points and 9.3 rebounds per game in 31 starts and was named to the All-Big 12 Conference Second Team.  He was a unanimous Big 12 All-Freshman Team selection and also made the Big 12 All-Newcomer Team.  Tshiebwe was selected to the NABC District 8 First Team and the USBWA District II Team. He led the Mountaineers in scoring and rebounding and had a team-high 19 games in double-digit scoring and a team-best 10 double-doubles.  Tshiebwe was first in the Big 12 in offensive rebounds per game with 4.1 and second in overall rebounding.  He registered 13 double-figure efforts on the boards and led the nation in offensive rebounding percentage at 19.0%.  Tshiebwe earned Big 12 Newcomer of the Week three times.  He logged a 17-point, 17-rebound game at No. 3 Kansas.  Tshiebwe had a monster game against Wichita State with 19 points and a career-high 18 rebounds and he went for 20 points and 17 rebounds in just his second career game at Pitt.

Tshiebwe transferred to Kentucky midseason his sophomore year and was ineligible to play the rest of the season due to NCAA transfer rules but practiced with the team beginning in February

Tshiebwe was the unanimous National Player of the Year (Sporting News, Associated Press, United States Basketball Writer’s Association, National Association of Basketball Coaches, Naismith Trophy, Wooden Award) his junior year at Kentucky.  He was the first player in program history to win all six NCAA-recognized awards. He was the first player in SEC history to win all six in the same season.  Tshiebwe was a unanimous All-America First-Team honoree by the AP, Sporting News, USBWA, and NABC.  He was the Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Award winner for the nation’s best center and the NABC’s Pete Newell Big Man of the Year.  Tshiebwe was named SEC Player of the Year and was a First-Team All-SEC selection by both the league’s coaches and media.  He was a Naismith Defensive Player of the Year finalist.  Tshiebwe led the country in rebounding (15.1), offensive rebounds per game (5.3), and defensive rebounding percentage (34.6%), also ranked second in offensive rebounding percentage (19.4%).  He snared 515 rebounds on the season, topping any other Division I collegiate player.  That mark ranks as the third-most in program history and is one of just three players to tally 500 or more.  He became a 1,000-point collegiate scorer in the final game of the season.  Tshiebwe set a UK single-season record with 28 double-doubles and was the first player to average at least 15 points and at least 15 rebounds per game since Drake’s Lewis Lloyd and Alcorn State’s Larry Smith did so in 1979-80.  He was the first major-conference player to average 15-15 since UCLA’s Bill Walton in 1972-73.  Tshiebwe was the first UK player to tally those numbers since Bob Burrow in 1954-55.  He finished the season as the only major-conference player averaging at least 1.6 blocks and 1.6 steals per game.  Tshiebwe corralled 10 or more rebounds in all but two games and finished the season with program records of 21 straight double-figure rebounding efforts and 16 straight double-doubles.  He is one of only two players (Anthony Davis) in program history since 1978-79 to lead the team in points per game (17.4), rebounds per game (15.1), steals per game (1.8), blocks per game (1.6) and field-goal percentage (60.6%) with a minimum of 130 attempts.  Tshiebwe set a Rupp Arena record with 28 rebounds against Western Kentucky and had more rebounds than the Hilltoppers entire team.  It tied for the sixth-most rebounds in UK history and the most for a Wildcat in a regulation-length game in more than 52 years.  It was the most in Division I basketball since Kendall Gray from Delaware State had 30 in 2015.  He finished the season responsible for 37.8% of the team’s total rebounds, taking away team rebounds that number jumped to 41.2%.  He had 80 rebounds through the first five games of the season which was the most by an SEC player in any five-game span since 2016.  His 56 rebounds to begin the season were the most through a player’s first three career games in program history dating back to 1956-57.  Tshiebwe was the first UK player with six games of at least 20 points and at least 15 rebounds since Jim Andrews in 1972-73.  He became the first player in program history to tally at least 30 points and snare at least 15 rebounds in an NCAA Tournament game when he had 30 points and 16 boards against Saint Peter’s.  He scored 30 points and had 18 rebounds at Arkansas, becoming the first UK player to achieve those numbers on the road against an SEC foe since Dan Issel in 1970. Tshiebwe had 17 points, 16 boards, and three blocks in the come-from-behind win at home vs. LSU.  He scored 21 points and added 14 rebounds at home against Alabama and tallied 27 points and 19 rebounds at home against Florida.  Tshiebwe produced 17 points, 14 rebounds, and four blocks at Kansas and had 21 points and 22 rebounds in the overtime win over Mississippi State.  He logged 30 points and 13 rebounds at Vanderbilt and scored 29 points and contributed 17 rebounds against Georgia.  Tshiebwe posted 13 points and 20 rebounds in the SEC opener against Missouri. He had 14 points and the record-breaking 28 boards against Western Kentucky and combined for 48 boards in a two-game stretch.  He had three straight games of 20 or more points against Central Michigan, Southern and at Notre Dame.  Tshiebwe logged 24 points and 16 boards with three blocks against Mount St. Mary’s and had 14 points and 20 boards in his UK home opener against Robert Morris.  He scored 17 points and had 20 rebounds in the Champions Classic against Duke.  Those rebounds were the most in the history of the event and the most ever in a UK debut.

Follow Oscar on Twitter:  @Oscartshiebwe34 | Follow Oscar on Instagram:  @oscar_tshiebwe

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