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Beejay Anya Brings Blue Collar, Shot-Blocking Game

Beejay Anya (Photo credit: USA Basketball)

In an era of above the rim mixtape videos, featuring high-flying aerial theatrics, 6’-9”, 275 pound center Beejay Anya is relatively grounded. But with an innate ability to block shots, and a forceful post presence, Anya knows who he is on the floor – a feared defender and true interior standout.Despite not being an elite leaper, Anya used tremendous timing and long arms to establish himself as perhaps the best shot-blocker at the USA Basketball 17U mini camp. He establishes dominance in rebounding his area, and sent more than his fair shots of shots away from the hoop.

He’s been a known prospect since his freshman year at DeMatha Catholic (MD), where he played heavy minutes at the famed program. Despite that, he’s keeping his recruiting options open, as he told that some of the programs he’s interested in includes Georgetown, NC State, Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Kansas, UCLA, Seton Hall, DePaul and Maryland.

Additionally, Anya noted that his longtime teammates at DeMatha, and on the AAU circuit for Team Takeover, James Robinson and Jeramie Grant are headed to Pittsburgh, and Syracuse, respectively. Anya said that he considers Robinson and Grant “like brothers” and he loves playing with them. Anya also has Pittsburgh and Syracuse among his options, along with the aforementioned list.

As for the factors that will influence his college decision, Anya told that he is most concerned about the campus feeling like home, with the opportunity to play early.

While some of the players at mini-camp had to be pushed to get to the intensity level promoted by the coaching staff, Anya already plays for one of the coaches, Mike Jones, at DeMatha, and brought a competitive spirit to the camp.

While he acknowledged his skills on the defensive end, Anya is working on developing a complete game, and stated that he has improved his ability to score in the paint, and rebound as of late. While he’s still working to get into ideal physical condition (he recently lost 30 pounds) for his considerable size, Anya is a unique talent, and a potentially elite defender wherever he decides to play college hoops.

About K.J. Hassenstab

K.J. Hassenstab is the publisher of the College Basketball Newcomers Guide book and He founded in 2009, and has contributed to SlamOnline, Dime Magazine's, and, along with other publications in the past. Hassenstab has covered grassroots, high school and basketball recruiting for over a decade. Follow on Twitter, @Hoopniks.

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