After a very long wait and considering his recruitment options for some time, the wait is finally over for Chaparral High School's 6-foot-8 senior post Michael Saba. The hard-working and determined Saba went through a long recruiting process that was blurred by the COVID pandemic, and, as a result, he had to wait for college suitors. After the long wait, Saba now has signed a national letter of intent with Azusa Pacific University, one of the top Division-II programs in the country.
Saba had a signing party this weekend and inked the NLOI with his new college home, which was a breathe of fresh air for Saba.
"It was all in God's plan for my future," said Saba. "I feel everything worked out the way it was supposed to."
It was thought that Saba might attract loads of Division-II programs in his college recruitment, but when that did not happen for him, Saba kept his head up and kept working.
"I always like to work hard," said Saba. "Regardless of what happens, I am always going to work."
In the end, Saba's hard work and potential for the future, on and off the court, was the deciding factor in his college recruitment, as Azusa Pacific came in late and decided to offer a scholarship to Saba and his family.
"This is what we were looking for," said Saba's mother Kimla. "They have strong academics and also have a good basketball program. It was a great fit.
This past season, Saba had his best season of his young career - averaging 15.7 points, 9.3 rebounds and 1.7 blocks per/outing. Unfortunately for Saba, his Chaparral team struggled to win games this past season, and so the team losses completely overshadowed his performance and numbers. Saba was a bright spot for the struggling Firebirds, and he will only continue to develop over time, as he continues to mature and develop.
Saba is a unique prospect in Arizona high school basketball, as he is very mature, on and off the court. He plays with a purpose and is very fundamentally sound. He has a very advanced skill level with superior footwork and an ability to score inside and out. He has a nice shooting stroke with some range and is consistent out to the arc. He also has a very good jump hook and a strong ability to score from mid-range at the high post or from the wing. Saba is a complete offensive performer that should only continue to improve over time, as he matures and continues to get physically stronger and more explosive. He is also very unselfish and is a great teammate that is always clapping it up for his teammates on the floor.
Saba runs the floor hard and is a strong finisher in the open court. He is a good overall finisher and is able to beat most post bigger post players down the floor. He is a goof passer out of the post and also outlets the basketball to the guard to start the break. He is an active rebounder that rebounds outside of his area. His best attribute is his ability to block and change shots, which he does quite well as a result of his length and timing. He also plays with very good intensity.
Saba is also an excellent student and achieved an amazing 29 on the ACT.
Congratulations to Michael Saba and his family on this amazing accomplishment, and good luck to him in the future from our staff here at Arizona Preps.