USU men’s basketball signs Polish national Szymon Zapala

Szymon Zapala. Image from FIBA

LOGAN, Utah – Utah State head men’s basketball coach Craig Smith has announced the addition of Szymon Zapala to a National Letter of Intent, joining the Aggies for the 2020-21 season. Zapala, a 6-foot-11, 240-pound center played for the Poland National Team at the 2019 U18 FIBA European Championships.

Szymon Zapala. Photo courtesy of FIBA

At the tournament, Zapala led Poland to the finals, averaging 7.5 points, 5.1 rebounds and 1.0 blocks per game as his team finished second. Zapala scored in double figures in two games during the championships, logging a tournament-high 16 points against Estonia on 7-of-10 shooting from the floor. Zapala also added 10 points in the semifinals against the Czech Republic, finishing the tournament shooting 61.0 percent (25-of-41) from the floor.

Nationally, Zapala played for Trefl Sopot in the U20 Polish Cup, helping his side to the championships and earning MVP honors. At the high school level, Zapala averaged 17.9 points, 13.5 rebounds, 2.4 blocks and 2.1 assists per game for SMS PZkosz Wladyslawowo. Zapala’s rebounding numbers included 4.2 offensive rebounds per game, while shooting 58.6 percent from the floor and 47.1 percent from behind the 3-point line.

“We are thrilled to announce Szymon will be joining the Aggie family. Szymon has the unique combination of being an absolute warrior on the floor and a borderline nuclear physicist in the classroom,” Smith said. “Szymon is 6-11 and 240 pounds, and possesses great skill, physicality, and has a high IQ for the game. He has played at an extremely high level, representing the Polish National team. He has also been very well coached in Poland. Above all, he is a tremendous person with a great attitude that leaves a positive impression on everyone that he is in contact with.”

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