Collins Achimpong has played nine organized football matches at any level.
two years ago.
However, the lack of experience for this 6-foot-8, 230-pound athlete from Vermont Prep Academy in Anaheim, California, didn’t frighten any of the college recruits.
Certainly not those from the University of Washington.
It made them even more intrigued by this teenager from Ghana in West Africa.
On Monday, Achimbong received an offer for a football scholarship from the Kalen DeBoer Husky crew, giving him six in all. Others drawn to the big kid from halfway around the world are UCLA, Utah, Colorado, San Jose State, and San Diego State.
Achimbong has not played any football or basketball until three years ago. While his basketball career continued uninterrupted, he only wore a helmet and shoulder pads at Vermont Prep as a freshman because the COVID pandemic forced his small private school in Orange Country to dissolve its program.
Acheampong is still taking enough shots in the 2020 season for people to notice. He accumulated 51 passes, including 15 tackles for losses and 9 sacks, and forced a confusion.
He knew right away that American football would be beneficial to him.
“Well, I always knew I was going to be a football-playing monster,” Achimbong told 247Sports. “I have never raised [weights] So far I know for sure that no one at 6-8, 230lbs can move as fast as they can.”
He is the second African athlete to have recently arrived in the United States and received a UW scholarship, to join Baye Gobe from Senegal. Joby is a 6-foot-5, 215-pound prepped for Christian Community School in Norman, Oklahoma.
On the basketball court, Achimbong transformed himself into a powerful striker who played for the high school and Al Ain University teams. While he averaged 9 points per game at Vermont Prep, he had a strong run earlier this month scoring 31 against San Juan Capistrano High. All this happened fairly quickly.
“It was tough because I started both sports basically from scratch, so every year in this country I started to understand things better and got better,” Achimbong said.
UCLA was the most aggressive of his recruiting, encouraging him to come play football and basketball with the Bruins. His footballing contact is outside the line-back coach Ikeka Malloy, assistant coach and former Husky player. The young African was already on campus for a visit and attended the basketball game at Pauley Pavilion.
Vermont Prep has yet to retake his football program, but Achimpong says he wouldn’t consider attending another school in Southern California in his senior year. He will only participate in football camps and 7v7 competition to stay himself against the talent scouts.
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