Hayden Koval Pledges to Cincinnati


Just over a week after his new appearance as the Cincinnati men’s basketball head coach, Wes Miller brings a confidante to Queen City when former 7-footer Hayden Koval of Central Arkansas and UNCG stepped onto the transfer portal and promised to follow his coach and adapt to the red and black next season.

(Photo: 247Sport)

The Bearcat Journal spoke to advanced statistics darling Koval about his commitment and what excited him most about joining Cincinnati. Posting elite block rate numbers in about 19 minutes per game last season, Koval is perfectly capable of stepping out and hitting 3 pointers as he’s been connected to 34% from the depths throughout his career. Koval is also a 74% free throw shooter and works as someone who can help keep the distance halfway up with his shooting, taking no liability for the free throw, flushing home lobs and passing passes and the rim and weak side with to protect his shot blocked.

“I’m proud of the defensive ending and God gave me a great ability to control and block shots, read the opponent’s hands, and keep the ball in play. Put it on the defensive and be as an anchor as possible. On the offensive, I can honestly help the team wherever coach Miller sees that I’ll get three hits with a pick-and-pop or a low-down, ”said Koval.

“Due to COVID, I am entitled to another year, am a doctoral student and have a bachelor’s degree in accounting. I’m looking at a master’s degree in taxes or accounting specializing in taxes,” said Koval.

“Coach Miller recruited me when I left the UCA and all I could say is that he is a player-coach and builds relationships with players. We can mess up on the pitch but off the pitch he really cares about his players as individuals. I’m really looking forward to coming to Cincinnati, it’s a top program in the country and I feel blessed to come to Ohio and see another part of the country and do what I love, which is basketball too play, ”said Koval.

“The American is probably one of the best conferences out there, along with the Power 5 leagues and the SoCon and Southland conference. There have been some less competitive teams, but every game in the US is very competitive. I have to realize that the competition is better, more skilled and more physical. I need to get in shape and get strong and have a whole off-season and summer schedule to develop and get stronger and be in better shape overall. I’m really looking forward to it and helping myself to develop as a player, ”said Koval.

Stay tuned for the latest news and recruiting information for your Cincinnati football and basketball teams on BCJ.