Remember all the late 2015-early 2016 buzz about an enormous 15-year-old basketball player dominating the U-16 circuit in Italy? If not, here’s a quick refresher course.
A year on from Bobroczky’s original international identification, the teenager is adapting to life in the American midwest, where he is attending and planning to compete for the SPIRE Institute, based in Geneva, Ohio, Northeast of Cleveland. According to his teammates and fans, Bobroczky’s height, which makes him the second-tallest basketball player in history, is just one of the things that makes him so impressive. Consider this: Bobroczky had never set foot on the court in a competitive game here in the U.S., and he’s already probably one of the most intriguing players in the country.
Of course, being one of the tallest humans on the planet at age 16 will do that for you. Yet Bobroczky aims to achieve plenty at SPIRE, an internationally focused campus which landed the Romanian teen simply by reaching out over Facebook and convincing him to come take a look at the school.
“There’s so much more to Robert than his size,” SPIRE Institute Executive Director Bobby Bossman told MaxPreps of Bobroczky’s arrival. “He’s a bit quiet at first, but he has a great sense of humor. My 9-year-old loves him and they joke around all the time. He’s very respectful and wants nothing for free. We went to the store, and he pleaded for me not to pay for shaving cream that he needed. He had five dollars waiting for me the next morning. He’s just a great kid to be around.”
He’s also a great student, apparently. The teen currently holds a 4.0 GPA at SPIRE and is already fluent in four languages, including English, Hungarian, Italian and Romanian. And he still has two-and-a-half years of high school left to go, time in which he can keep learning, adapting and further developing his jumper.
Hopefully he’ll get a chance to be a true American teenager somewhere in the process, too. We can’t wait to hear about his Chinese take out orders and pizza binges to come.