This past offseason, Thomas Akyazili decided he wanted to bring a few reminders of home a little closer to his life in Boulder.
Fans of the Colorado Buffaloes men's basketball team will note a new look for Akyazili, who added a number of tattoos to his upper left arm.
Akyazili said most of them are reminders of his home in Belgium. The others are, "Things important to me, that keep me working."
So far, head coach Tad Boyle has lauded Akyazili's offseason progress. Not only did Akyazili endure the typical freshman growing pains a year ago, but he did so while also adjusting to life in an entirely new country and social environment.
"It's going to be a big, big difference because I know what to expect now," Akyazili said. "I know what I had to work on this summer and it's going to be a lot easier for me to play, I think. Also, there's a mental thing. You're not new anymore. Last year, the team was already a team and you have to find your role. Now you're part of that team. I'm looking forward to the season and I can't wait."
Akyazili averaged 3.7 points while appearing in 33 of 34 games for the Buffs last year, and he spent much of the offseason working to improve the .288 mark (17-for-59) he compiled from 3-point range. For the second consecutive year, Akyazili competed with Belgium's U20 team at the European Championships over the summer.
Brady's new home
Former CU guard Brett Brady has landed on the roster at Division II Colorado Christian, which competes in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference.
Brady spent four years as a walk-on in the Buffs' program, appearing in 10 games last year and 20 total over the past three seasons. With one year of eligibility remaining Brady, a Highlands Ranch native, wanted to spend his final season at a school where he might enjoy increased playing time.
The Buffs were working out at the Coors Events Center Wednesday morning when reports began spreading across campus of the machete-wielding intruder at the Champions Center, a person who later was fatally shot by responding police officers. The Buffs were unaware of the incident until practice ended...CU will take Thursday off before resuming preseason workouts on Friday morning.