Moses Byekwaso is a 23 year old 190cm guard that was born in London, England and played his first season in Germany with the ScanPlus Baskets Elchingen (Germany-Regionalliga) averaging 22,0ppg, 4,0rpg, 2,0apg and 1,0spg. He began his basketball career at Preston College (United Kingdom) and then went to the States and played at 2 different schools. He began at Northeast Community College (JUCO) playing 30 games averaging 8.7ppg, 3.3rpg, 1.2apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 44.3%, 3PT: 38.3%, FT: 75.0%. In his second season at Northeast Community College (JUCO) he played 27 games averaging 12.9ppg, 4.1rpg, 1.7apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 39.6%, 3PT: 34.7%, FT: 75.0%. he played his last season in the States at the University of Science and Arts (NAIA) playing 27 games averaging 11.0ppg, 4.9rpg, 2.1apg, FGP: 44.3%, 3PT: 36.1%, FT: 74.6%. He spoke to germanhoops.com about his basketball career during COVID-19 in 2020.
Moses thanks for talking to germanhoops.com. Where are you at the moment and how has your summer been despite the whole COVID-19 effecting the world
Thank you for having me. In terms of when covid stuck I was still in Oklahoma finishing up school there. In terms of how covid affected me, apart from the 2 months of quarantine covid didn’t really affect me. The main reason for this is because in Oklahoma I managed to find a court as well as a coach and player to workout with each day while keeping safe by sanatizing and following guidelines.
How have you experienced the whole COVID-19 crisis in Great Britain in the last months How much did the last 6 months change your life and how much of a challenge was it finding the time and places to be able to stay in shape and be able to work on your game?
I was blessed enough to not have been affected by this mainly because I wasn’t based at home in London, and only got home mid august.so I guess I managed to doge the heat of quarantine. in terms of how covid has changed my life I would say there were some benefits as it gave me a lot of time to focus on other aspects of my life apart from basketball.
You played your last game on Februry 29, 2020 in the NAIA. What did you learn about appreciate most about basketball in the time that you couldn’t compete on the floor against other teams?
The main thing I appreciated was family. like even though I wasn’t at home, I managed to take time each day just to have a conversation with my family members which was hard to do during the season because of how busy I was as well as the time difference.
How do you feel did COVID-19 make you stronger as a man?
It really just made me more hungry and was just a reminder that nothing is promised, and also help me really tune in to my hobbies/work outside the game.
Congrats on signing with German Regionalliga team ScanPlus Baskets. How excited are you about starting your professional career in Germany?
-Thank you so much, and yes I’m very excited mainly because this is a dream come true and I’ve heard nothing but good things about basketball in Germany and the market.
What do you know in general about the country Germany and it’s basketball. In the last years there have been more players coming to Germany from the UK.
Coming in to Germany I really didn’t know much but with the help of my agent and some of my own research as well as feedback from older players that have played in Germany I’ve heard that it’s a good market to play in as well as the basketball is more up tempo which suits my game perfectly.
What were the main reasons for joining this club? Do you feel like you have a very good chance of developing further as a player here?
The main reason I chose to join scanplus was mainly because they are a winning program as well as it was just a good fit for me to start of my pro career. oh 100% I can see myself developing here in Germany but will have to see what the future holds for me.
Let’s talk a bit about your game. You’re a 190cm guard. If you had to compare your game to an NBA player who would best fit the bill?
I wouldn’t say that I could compare myself to just one player mainly because I believe that my game is very versatile I would say it would be a combination of a Russell Westbrook and a prime JR smith.
You’re a guy that can score, but what other assets does your game have that makes you be successful on the court?
I would say that my defense would be my main asset apart from scoring mainly because iIcan guard 1-3 on all the teams I’ve played on.
You were a solid three point shooter in school, but not an excellent shooter. How hungry are you to eclipse the 40% mark as an outside shooter?
-I wouldn’t say it’s my goal to shoot 40% because I feel that I have the ability to shoot at 40% clip, but I 100% want to shoot over 40 this year.
Your also a solid defender. What do you feel is your best attribute on the defensive end?
my best attribute on defense would being able to guard multiple positions even at my height as well as grabbing defensive rebounds.
On what area’s of your game did you work on most this summer so your game can continue to grow as you climb the basketball ladder?
The main aspect I really focused on the season was to improve my ball handling and being able to create multiple ways to create scoring opportunities for my teammates as well as myself. As well as to keep the consistency in my jump shot.
You played the last 4 years in the States for 3 different schools with Missouri State University West Plains (JUCO), Northeast Community College (JUCO) and the University of Science and Arts (NAIA). Do you ever wonder where you might be today had you remained in the UK and continued to develop there?
To be honest I don’t think I would have stayed in the UK to develop but if I did I would say that I would be in the BBL (British basketball league) and would have a solid role there.
How beneficial do you feel it was for your game being able to play at 2 schools? How do you feel did your game develop further in the States?
I’m really thankful for the fact that I was able to go and play in the U.S mainly because I felt that it brought a different type of focus/ dog out of me mainly because over there you see how hard some players and even normal people work to get what they want.
You played 2 seasons with Northeast Community College (JUCO) averaging 8.7ppg, 3.3rpg, 1.2apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 44.3%, 3PT: 38.3%, FT: 75.0% and averaging 12.9ppg, 4.1rpg, 1.7apg, 1.1spg, FGP: 39.6%, 3PT: 34.7%, FT: 75.0%. What kind of an experience was it balling in the JUCO? Players that I interview always report that is a tough league. How challenging is it playing so many guys with chips on their shoulders?
Yeah for sure JUCO basketball is 100% the hardest basketball a player could play in (in terms of college) mainly because like you said everyone is trying to get a scholarship and make it. but for sure at first it was hard however I feel that once you find your role on your team other than scoring or even if you just spot up and shoot its definately gets easier, because anyone can have 30 on any night so as a player scoring cannot be your main focus.
You finished at the University of Science and Arts (NAIA) playing 27 games averaging 11.0ppg, 4.9rpg, 2.1apg, FGP: 44.3%, 3PT: 36.1%, FT: 74.6%. You had many good games there, but was your 28 point explosion against John Brown one of your fondest memories on the court?
Even though I did score 28 i wouldn’t say that was my fondest memory that year. In terms of overall college experience scoring 38 pts on 14/17 shooting as well as me coming off the bench in both halfs was my best memory. In terms of my last year as USAO I would say winning the game vs ranked LSUA with only 7 of are guys playing was my best memory because man did we fight for that win.
How did head coach Chris Francis give you that last push in helping groom and prepare you for a professional career?
-I would say his main effect on me wasn’t to do with basketball it was more of a life aspect as he would always tell us that nothing is promised and basketball could end tommorow.
Who won a one on one in practice you or Trevon Ellis?
me of course hahaha.
Who was the toughest player that you battled in the States or anywhere that went to the NBA?
I actually haven’t played anyone that has gone to the NBA yet but I would say as a freshman I played against two big guys one played for marshall town and another was Spanish and played for Indian hill They were definately two tough big guys.
Please list your 5 best teammates of all-time?
Thats a tough one I would say in no particular order
Please construct your personal NBA Mount Rushmore of past or present players?
What is your personal opinion between the never ending debate between Michael Jordan and Lebron James concerning who is the greatest of all-time?
I would say in terms of stats Lebron is the goat but in terms of actual game, winning and overall culture change without a doubt it has to be Michael Jordan. So Michael is the greatest of all time.
What was the last movie that you saw?
Friday which was a long time ago mainly because I’m not really a movie type of guy.
Thanks Moses for the chat.