Interview: Ehab Amin speaks on recent March Madness run and his future
After finishing his final season of college basketball, Ehab Amin spoke with Malek Shafei of KingFut to discuss his career and what his future holds.
Malek Shafei: Growing up, how was life in Egypt?
Ehab Amin: Basketball and sports was everything for me and my family. I started playing basketball when I was six years old and I began playing for Alexandria Sporting Club. I began playing for the National Team when I was 14. We won Gold at the 2011 U16 AfroCup and I won MVP. I also played for the U18’s next year and won bronze. It was the latter tournament that pushed me to take basketball seriously and move to the United States. I was selected Africa U18 MVP that year as well.
MS: How was adjusting to life in the US?
EA: I moved to the US when I was 17 and played my senior year in Wisconsin. There were a lot of changes in the style of play compared to what I was used to back home. The basketball language was extremely different, also. I broke my back and missed the season, which was very hard. I ended up getting a scholarship offer to go to Texas A&M–Corpus Christi. I’m grateful everything worked out at the end.
MS: Who were your role models growing up?
EA: My older brother and father. My father is a professor of surgery and he would get up at 5:30 every morning because he loved what he did and believed in it. It made me want to work harder for what I want.
MS: You really seemed to blossom in your junior season, having a breakout season and earned Southland All-Defensive Team, first-team All-Southland, NABC all-region, and mid-major All-American honors. What do you credit your development to?
EA: I definitely have to give credit to my coaches and teammates. The summer after my sophomore year I wasn’t really pleased with where I was at as a player. I worked really hard that summer, always staying in the gym to improve on my game. I also have to thank my teammate for three years Rashawn Thomas who really helped me add stuff to my game and train professionally.
MS: Oregon reached the Sweet Sixteen during the recent March Madness run, how was the tournament experience?
EA: This was my first time playing in the tournament. Coming to the United States, I had a vision of playing at a big time program in the tournament and it was great to achieve that goal. I came really close all three years at Texas A&M to making the tournament but we were never able to. One of the main reasons I transferred to Oregon was because I wanted to play in the tournament.
MS: You were the subject of a lot of attention after you did what many would call a flop against Virginia. Do you have any comments on what happened?
EA: It was a really physical game. Virginia are a really good team and from the jump we were trash talking. We [Diakite] got close together, and I felt him headbutt me so I sold it a bit to try to get the tech. The refs reviewed it and gave both of us techs.
MS: You have represented the Egyptian National Team at youth and senior levels. How was your time with the team? And do you look to continue playing with them post-college?
EA: I’ve been playing for the national team since I was 14. It’s the biggest honor to represent my country. I hope to help the team qualify for the upcoming World Cup and Olympics.
MS: Unfortunately your college basketball career is now over. What’s next for you? Will you pursue a pro career or move away from basketball after you graduate?
EA: It’s really hard to get drafted as a fifth year senior. So i’m going to try my hardest and try to play in the Summer League. I’ll probably sign an agent in the coming weeks and we’ll see what comes next.
Who is your favorite basketball player?
Who is your favorite Egyptian athlete?
Which football club do you support?
I’m an Arsenal fan but I support Liverpool also because of Salah. Sometimes I wake up early to catch Liverpool games.
Ahlawy or Zamalkawy?
KingFut thanks Ehab for his time and wishes him the best of luck in his future endeavors.
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