Basketball

Q&A: New Iowa State commit Osun Osunniyi

Mar 20, 2021; Bloomington, Indiana, USA; St. Bonaventure Bonnies forward Osun Osunniyi (21) dunks for a basket against the Louisiana State Tigers during the second half in the first round of the 2021 NCAA Tournament at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. Mandatory Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports

The following is a Q&A conducted with St. Bonaventure big man, and new Iowa State transfer commit, Osun Osunniyi prior to his commitment announcement on Friday.

CF: Why Iowa State?

Osunniyi: They built a great relationship in the entire process from the moment I got into the portal. They reached out, reached out to my family and just built a great connection with all of us.

CF: What’s been their recruiting pitch? How do they see you fitting into the program?

Osunniyi: They see me as one of the main guys on the team, one of the go-to guys they’re gonna play through. Giving me confidence, they’re gonna allow me to not play through mistakes, and also at the same time prepare me for the next level.

CF: What role did St. Bonaventure teammate Jaren Holmes play in your recruitment?

Osunniyi: He played a decent role. I played with him for three years. So, you know, we have chemistry, but at the same time, for me, it just felt like the right place and plan they set out for me.

CF: What did you take away from your visit last weekend?

Osunniyi: Just the atmosphere. Just how everything felt, and just meeting all the coaches in person. Just actually getting down to campus and seeing everything, just kind of made me feel like that’s the right place to be.

CF: Was there anything specifically that really stuck out to you?

Osunniyi: I think what stuck out was just Coach Otzelberger’s energy, and just how he was just talking to me when we were meeting and just the faith he has in me.

CF: How would you describe yourself as a player?

Osunniyi: Right now, I see myself as a defensive anchor. I feel like I’m one of the best defensive players in the country, especially with shot-blocking, and I feel I can bring that to Iowa State and help protect the rim at a really high level. Like I said, the coaches’ plan for me is to not only just be a defensive player but to help build my game on the offensive side.

CF: How much did you know about Iowa State before they really started recruiting you?

Osunniyi: I knew Izaiah Brockington because he used to go to St. Bonaventure. So I kind of kept an eye on him when he was at Penn State and then he ended up at Iowa State. So I was watching throughout the year and just seeing how he was playing throughout the season.

CF: What’s it like to be a player in the transfer portal right now?

Osunniyi: For me, it was crazy. The moment I went in, it was just phone call after phone call for like three days straight. It was a lot, but it was a great experience, especially after playing for four years at St. Bonaventure. Just seeing the people that called and schools that reached out was just kind of like a great experience.

CF: Is it a relief to have it over now?

Osunniyi: Yeah. I feel happy. I feel comfortable and I’m happy where I’m at and I’m just ready to get down there and get to work.

Jared Stansbury

administrator

Jared a native of Clarinda, Iowa, started as the Cyclone Fanatic intern in August 2013, primarily working as a videographer until starting on the women’s basketball beat prior to the 2014-15 season. Upon earning his Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from Iowa State in May 2016, Jared was hired as the site’s full-time staff writer, taking over as the primary day-to-day reporter on football and men’s basketball. He was elevated to the position of managing editor in January 2020. He is a regular contributor on 1460 KXNO in Des Moines and makes regular guest appearances on radio stations across the Midwest. Jared resides in Ankeny with his four-year-old puggle, Lolo.