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Hooray for Zay

Hooray for Zay

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - - Former Belmont University men's basketball standout Amanze Egekeze ('18) has agreed to a professional playing contract with PAOK Thessaloniki in Greece, as first reported by Eurobasket Sunday.

Egekeze averaged nearly 15 points and seven rebounds per game last season in time split among three professional teams in Japan.

The Lake in the Hills, Illinois native scored 1,350 career points, 10th on Belmont's NCAA Division I era scoring list. Egekeze was a mainstay in 89 Belmont victories, including three Ohio Valley Conference championship teams.

The 6-8 forward started in the Bruins' 2015 NCAA Tournament near-upset of No. 2 seed Virginia, and was part of signature victories over Marquette, Georgia, Vanderbilt and nationally-ranked Murray State, among others, during his career.

As a senior in 2018, Egekeze led Belmont and ranked fifth in the OVC in scoring at 16.8 points per game. He posted 26 double figure scoring games en route to All-OVC First Team honors.

Egekeze, who earned his bachelor's degree in business administration, finished sixth among all active NCAA Division I frontcourt players in career 3-point field goals made (222).

Belmont University men's basketball has earned postseason invitations 13 of the last 14 seasons, including eight berths to the NCAA Tournament. The Bruins have won 17 conference championships since 2006 - third-most nationally over that span (Gonzaga, Kansas). Belmont is one of only six NCAA Division I programs outside the Power 5 to post Top 100 RPIs nine consecutive seasons (BYU, Gonzaga, Saint Mary's (CA), San Diego State, Wichita State). Belmont is one of only nine NCAA Division I programs to win 19 or more games 14 consecutive seasons (BYU, Duke, Gonzaga, Kansas, Louisville, Michigan State, North Carolina, San Diego State). Belmont University men's basketball boasts an NCAA-leading 17 CoSIDA Academic All-America selections since 2001 and is the only NCAA Division I program to make the NCAA Academic Progress Rate (APR) Honor Roll every year of existence.