Tolu Jacobs Yaffa announced on Twitter this afternoon that he will be taking his talents to Happy Valley to climb with Penn State basketball next season. The 6’11”, 270 pound power forward hails from Kingman Academy of Learning in Lake Havasu City, Arizona.
Great day to be Nittany lion 🦁 pic.twitter.com/3xyNKcDfkH
— chairmanofdaboards (@toluyj) November 3, 2017
Yaffa is the third commit Pat Chambers reeled in for the 2018 recruiting class, joining guards Rasir Bolton and Myles Dread. He will be an addition to a deep front court next year that is only expected to lose Julian Moore due to graduation after this season.
247 ranks Yaffa as a three-star recruit. He also received offers from Butler, California, Stanford, and San Diego State, but chose to don the Blue and White for his college career. He is truly a large human being — which a team can never really have enough of — but he is definitely a raw talent.
He does appear to have a high motor from the video, which generally is a good sign of a coachable player. Yaffa also seems to run the floor extremely well for a player his size. He also doesn’t seem to be afraid to get on the floor for a loose ball or shoot a little mid-range jumper. He’s an alright finisher at the rim who has the potential to throw down some monster jams with his raw power.
Yaffa does need to clean up the foot work in the post a little bit and be stronger with the ball in his hands. A couple of times in the video he was stripped by a smaller player because of bringing the ball down to low. A lot of this can be cleaned up by the time he reaches Happy Valley, but there are encouraging signs with this player.
You can’t teach size, and Yaffa sure does have a lot of it. At 270 pounds, he would be the heaviest player on Penn State’s roster right now — and Yaffa still has his senior year at high school to potentially grow even more.
In the meantime, the 2017 Nittany Lions will be taking the court for two exhibition games this weekend to kickoff the new campaign. On Saturday, the team will take on Lafayette, followed by a matchup against Bloomsburg in the Bryce Jordan Center on Sunday. The regular season starts on November 10 against Campbell University here in Happy Valley.