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Bears Get Their Rim Protector, Adding Michigan State PF/C Mady Sissoko

April 29, 2024
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The Bears stayed busy on their major roster buildout in the offseason, adding their ninth portal transfer commit today in Michigan State 6/10-250 senior PF/C Mady Sissoko‍, adding the rim protector and inside presence they’ve been searching for along with his 7’3 wing span.

“I saw a lot of things on my trip that helped me know that Cal was a good place for me,” Sissoko said. “They showed me a lot of things like how I can fit in the program and how they can help me as an individual. And I liked the international flavor of the campus quite a lot.”

The Bears beat out Washington, San Diego State, Colorado and BYU for the senior center’s services, who described the role he intends to fill with the Bears.

"Just energy and definitely very, very solid defensively," Sissoko said "There's some areas offensively that I'd like to expand a little bit. I think I'm definitely an energy guy and can help the team a lot, especially just running and rebounding and protecting the rim."



Madsen’s experience as NBA veteran who also coached at the NBA level was a big drawing card for the newest Bear.

"Absolutely," Sissoko said. "He played as a high level and he's a very, very good coach. And I can see over the years what he has done with his bigs and the big improvement they've made. So I'd like to put myself in a situation to grow step by step. I think he's a guy who played that position and he's a very experienced coach who can get the most from me."

A native of Mali, Sissoko has seen the opportunity for basketball to open doors in his life, particularly in his home country where he’s established the Mady Sissoko Foundation that educates kids and provides over 200 scholarships and food from his NIL package for students from families in need. For those who wish to contribute, here’s gofundme link.

“I just want to give back and give the opportunity for those who are not in the same situation as I’m in,” Sissoko said. I want to make sure I do everything in my power to help them.”

As a junior, Sissoko shot 59.3% overall from the field and 70.5% from the free-throw line starting 26 of 35 games with an average of 3.1 points and 5.1 rebounds in 15.3 minutes when sharing the floor with four other bigs - a situation far different than he’ll see at Cal where he figures to expand his role substantially with the Bears’ in his final season.

The Bears are now down to their last roster spot where they’ll look to fill and complete their class in the next week ideally. To help contribute to the program’s Cal Legends NIL program, use this link: Cal Legends Collective

Sissoko joins center Lee Dort‍, forward Rytis Petraitis‍, wings Josh Ola-Joseph‍ and B.J. Omot‍ and guards Andrej Stojakovic‍, Christian Tucker‍, Jeff Nwankwo‍ and DJ Campbell‍ along with frosh point guard Jeremiah Wilkinson‍ in the Bears 2024 recruiting class.

Related:

Bears Add Another Big Portal Target in Air Force Forward Rytis Petraitis

Bears Add Priority Portal Transfer Guard Andrej Stojakovic

Bears Keep Rolling With Portal Transfer PG Christian Tucker

Bears Make Another Portal Addition in Minnesota SF Josh Ola-Joseph

 

Discussion from...

Bears Get Their Rim Protector, Adding Michigan State PF/C Mady Sissoko

3,250 Views | 4 Replies | Last: 19 days ago by calumnus
brevity
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The Only Colors, a SB Nation site for Michigan State fans, has an article from last year that explains the origins of the Mady Sissoko Foundation. Quoted in part:

Quote:

For those unfamiliar with his backstory by now, Mady comes from a small village in the west African nation of Mali. According to his Wikipedia page, that village is called Bafoulab, which I could find on Google Maps. According to the recent news articles I read, he is from Tangafoya, which I did not find on the map. By chance, Mady was discovered by an American doctor doing charity work in his area, and that doctor told a high school basketball coach in Utah about him. So Mady left his family, his village, and the only existence he knew, and finished his high school years in America...

Always in the back of his mind was how he could give back to his village. This most recent time back, he was there to give back in a major way.

Mady's initial thought was to just send money back to his village. Unlike his teammates, however, Mady is ineligible to receive NIL money due to the fact that he is in the U.S. on a student visa (yeah, I did not know that was a rule until I read about his project). Instead, Mady created a foundation through which he began seeking contributions. His goal was $50,000. We don't know how much he raised, because he would not say, but it was certainly more than that. And with that money, Mady helped open a school in his village.


He'll need to update the foundation's website to invite Cal fans to donate, in addition to Spartan Nation.
bear2034
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It feels like Christmas in April. Go Bears!
cal06
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Like the add, but I'm not seeing much evidence of him being a standout rim protector. 65 total blocks in 124 career games. Averages out to 1.7 blocks per 40 minutes. About the same rate as Fardaws.
calumnus
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cal06 said:

Like the add, but I'm not seeing much evidence of him being a standout rim protector. 65 total blocks in 124 career games. Averages out to 1.7 blocks per 40 minutes. About the same rate as Fardaws.


Maybe not quite "rim protector" but "interior defender" or "interior presence"? Someone to body up on opposing big men and keep them away from easy baskets and offensive rebounds.
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