The UTEP men's basketball squad added a new piece to their already talented backcourt with the signing of freshman point guard Kezza Giffa, a product of Paris, France.

This marks the third signee in the inaugural recruiting class for first-year head coach Joe Golding. The Miners previously added a pair of JUCO players to their 2021-22 roster in center Bonke Maring (Blinn College) and guard Jorell Saterfield (Ranger College).

The French point guard, who is a lefty at 6-foot-2, received interest from the likes of Georgia and BYU. He will have four years of eligibility for the Miners after spending many years playing basketball in Paris.

The 18-year-old averaged 17.8 points in 13 games with Levallois Metropolitans U21 during the 2020-21 season in France. He is a poised shooter that shot 46.7 percent from the floor. His solid play made him a top-5 finalist for the MVP in the Jeep Elite U21 league. Giffa even brings some national basketball experience, having competed with the French National U19 team.

His father, Sacha Giffa, played nearly two decades of professional basketball in the EuroLeague. He was teammates with former Spurs star Tony Parker on the French National Team.

“Kezza’s a lefty point guard who sees the floor extremely well, and he’s a high-level passer," said Golding on the signing. "He’s got great basketball IQ, and we think he can be an elite defender. Kezza’s played a high level of international competition in France. We’re very excited to see him develop, and he’ll continue to work on his game early in his collegiate career. His dad played professionally, so he sees the game from a coach’s standpoint. Anytime we can recruit an elite-level for four years, it’s very exciting.”

More recruiting news 

Earlier this week, one of UTEP's targets in KeyShawn Feazell committed to Creighton. The 6-foot-9 forward was a star for McNeese last year, averaging 13.5 points, 10.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game. Before McNeese, Feazell played sparingly for Mississippi State (1.4 points, 1.8 rebounds in 2019-20).

The Miners have three scholarships remaining.

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