ATENEO’s Nigerian center Chibueze Ikeh is slowly but surely proving his worth with the Blue Eagles in UAAP Season 80.
For helping lift Ateneo to two big wins that pushed the Eagles win-loss record to 6-0, Ikeh earned the vote for as UAAP Press Corps Chooks-to-Go Player of the Week.
Ikeh was chosen over Adamson's Papi Sarr and the Far Eastern University pair of Ron Dennison and Arvin Tolentino by writers covering the league.
Using his height and heft advantage to the hilt, the 6-foot-7 Ikeh averaged 12.5 ppg, 11.0 rpg, 2.0 apg, and 1.5 bpg last week.
Against University of Sto. Tomas last Wednesday, Ikeh scored seven points, pulled down 11 rebounds, and had three assists and two steals as the Eagles subdued the Growling Tigers 94-84.
Three days later, Ikeh scattered a career-high 18 points to go with 11 caroms, one dime and two blocks in Ateneo's 96-83 drubbing of National U.
Ikeh has also showcased a new facet of his game when he took—and—buried two three pointers against the Bulldogs.
“Coaches have been teaching me other facets of the game such as shooting, dribbling. I just found myself open and I just had to shoot it and went in,” Ikeh said.
“I’m not feeling any pressure. It’s just a game. If I miss, that’s okay. Coaches are teaching me every aspect of the game and that’s giving me the confidence I need," he added.
Ateneo's coaching staff, led by coach Tab Baldwin, was not surprised when Ikeh tried to extend his range because they were giving him the go-signal to do so.
“We weren’t surprised. The coaches have been giving him (Ikeh) the green light to shoot if he has a good rhythm to shoot it,” assistant coach Sandy Arespacochaga said.
Ateneo goes for a sweep of the first round when they clash with defending champion La Salle on Sunday at Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay.