Open Letter: Al-Farouq Aminu

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As we all know, basketball season for Wake Forest has ended. With four seniors departing, next year's roster promises to be full of fresh faces and a new brand of basketball. That being said there is one large question looming over the heads of most Wake fans regarding Deacon basketball that people would rather have answered now than later.

Click through to view an Open Letter to a very important member of the Wake Forest basketball team

Dear Farouq,

I realize that over the past couple of months you have been under scrutiny by not only ACC media, but national media and your own fans. This scrutiny has been based around two separate things: questioning of your effort (something I find to be absolutely ludicrous) and your intent with regards to entering the NBA draft. I do not intend to address either of these issues but instead wish to thank you for the two years that you have given to the team, regardless of you coming back.

Over the past two years we have watched you mature from a raw, athletic freshman on both ends of the ball, to a dominant force on both defense and the boards. Defensively you are one of the top players in the ACC, altering shots around the rim, forcing guards to give up an easy shot for a mid-range jumper or outside shot, and keeping athletic bigs off the scoreboard inside. Despite the fact that you were not voted to the ACC All-Defensive team, (another act of idiocy by the conference media) you were consistently one of the elite defensive bigs not only in the conference, but in the nation.

As far as rebounding goes, all we have to do is take a look at the stats. You were the only player in the entire ACC to average a double double on the year, averaging 11 rebounds a game. Your uncanny ability to be in the right place at the right time on the glass is unmatched by most players in the country. As one of the top ten rebounders in Division I, as well as the best offensive rebounder in the nation, you have given your team the best chance to win off of missed shots.

Many people have criticized you for your "lack of ball-handling skills" or the fact that you are still "a little raw offensively" but I feel a lot of this stems from the role that you have taken in the offense, and the fact that your wingspan is so long you just look a little awkward putting the ball on the floor in the open court. With your back to the basket, you typically get to the basket and put yourself in fantastic position to score. This is evident as you averaged 16 points a game this year.

As a selfish Wake fan I will go ahead and give the typical plea. Please come back for one more year and take us back to the NCAA tournament. With one more year (or even more amazingly two more) you can be one of the best players in college basketball and in Wake Forest basketball history. You're amazingly athletic and I think one more year could boost your draft stock into the top 3 next year. I do realize that the amount of money waiting is hard to turn down, but one more year in college with your friends and an easy lifestyle can also be pretty appealing. 

Although ESPN and most media outlets still cannot pronounce your name correctly (always saying Amino, rather than Aminu), we at Wake know your real name and your real value as a basketball player. Regardless of what you do next year you have given Wake your all each time you've been on the court and we could not have asked any more from you. You lead by example both inside the locker room and on the court, and any team in the nation would be lucky to have a player like you.

Signed,

Bart and the rest of the BSD Community

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