Player Spotlight: Duquesne F Ovie Soko

Story posted December 9, 2013 in CommRadio, Sports by Mark Leskovansky

Not too many athletes in sports don the jersey number “0”. When it comes to terms of performance on the court, Ovie Soko is a rarity beyond his number.

For Soko, putting up big numbers comes second nature.  Soko has made his mark on Duquesne’s basketball program since arriving a year and a half ago.

His great forward play, athleticism and physicality has proven to be a dynamic factor for the Dukes. In a 2013 strength and conditioning test, Soko posted a 40.5” vertical jump and a 300-pound bench press.

Born in England and raised in Bethel, Virginia, Soko began his college career at UAB. He transferred to Duquesne in May of 2012.

At Bethel High School in Hampton Roads, Virginia, he was a McDonald’s All-American nominee. Soko had an impressive career at UAB, improving upon his numbers each year.

In two seasons, (his sophomore and junior year) he scored in the double-digits 28 times and posted 11 career double-doubles.   Soko was a starter both seasons, starting 29 of 30 games as a sophomore and averaging 9.1 points per game.

As a junior he played in 30 games and started 24 of them.  In terms of play, this was his best year.  He led the team in steals, was second in assists and posted eight double-doubles. 

He posted 17 points and 15 rebounds against Alabama A&M making it one of his top games yet.  Soko’s first season at Duquesne hasn’t been much different.  In a matchup against the Pittsburgh Panthers in late November, he led the team with 17 points.

Soko will prove to be a test when Penn State returns to the city of Pittsburgh next Wednesday, for a matchup with Duquesne.

Mark Leskovansky is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism.  To contact him, email

Photo Credit: (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)