The Basketball Africa League (BAL) has unveiled BAL Elevate, a programme that will see one NBA Academy Africa prospect join each of the 12 BAL teams set to compete at the 2023 season when the tournament action resumes in Conferences. The BAL 2023 will once again feature a total of 38 games to be played in both Sahara Conference from March 11-21 in Dakar, Senegal, and Nile Conference due from April 26 April to May 6 in Cairo, Egypt as well as the playoffs and finals in Kigali, Rwanda from May 21-27. The second BAL Elevate draft took place virtually Friday, February 24, with each BAL team president selecting one NBA Academy Africa prospect to join their respective teams for the 2023 BAL season. BAL Elevate, which was launched prior to the 2022 BAL season, provides an opportunity for top prospects from NBA Academy Africa, an elite basketball training center in Saly, Senegal, to showcase their talent on a global stage and help their respective teams compete for the BAL championship. “The inaugural group of BAL Elevate players who joined our league from NBA Academy Africa last season not only showcased their talent and potential but also contributed greatly to the improved play in season two,” said BAL President Amadou Gallo Fall. “We have received terrific feedback from the teams and coaches who worked with the players, some of whom went on to sign with NBA G League Ignite or commit to NCAA Division I schools in the U.S. We look forward to watching this year’s class contribute to their respective teams and continue their development on a global stage,” he added. The BAL Elevate player pool was made up of prospects who currently attend NBA Academy Africa. The draft order was determined by a random draw of the 12 BAL teams. BAL Elevate players will not share in the prize money awarded to the top BAL teams at the end of the season to preserve their amateur status. Several players who participated in the inaugural BAL Elevate program last year went on to sign with professional teams or commit to NCAA Division I schools in the United States Senegalese Babacar Sane signed with NBA G League Ignite from DUC, Nigerian Rueben Chinyelu committed to Washington State University from CFV Beira as Nigerian Joy Ighovodjia who previously played for Rwanda Energy Group (REG) in 2022 signed for the Oral Roberts University while Nigerian Emmanuel Okorafor committed his future to the University of Louisville from Espoir Fukash. The recent BAL Elevate draft saw Cameroonian forward Ulrich Kamka Chomche drafted to play for Rwandan representatives REG and will join the team in Dakar ahead of the Sahara Conference. The 17-year-old is regarded as one of the standout young players to watch at BAL 2023 given her incredible rise from playing for Cameroon’s basketball powerhouse Forces Armees et Police (FAP) aged just 16 before joining NBA Academy Africa. Drafted players: Sahara Conference: Joy Ighovodja (ABC Fighters), Khaman Madit Maluach (AS Douanes), Khadim Rassoul Mboup (Kwara Falcons), Ulrich Kamka Chomche (REG), Rueben Abuchi Chinyelu (Stade Malien) and Churchill Abass (US Monastir). Nile Conference: Dramane Sayon Camara (Al Ahly), Parby Kabamba Musongela (Cape Town Tigers), Segun Ezekiel Obe (City Oilers), Paul Kabenga Mbiya (CFV Beira), Seifeldin Hendaway (Petro de Luanda) and Mabilmawut Kon Mabil (SLAC).