The Cavaliers and Tony Bennett had recruited Mamadi Diakite for years. The 6-9 forward was originally scheduled to graduate from the Blue Ridge School in 2016, but after committing to the Hoos over the summer he was able to reclassify for the 2015 class.
While most might want Diakite to play as soon as he can, take into account that the UVa website lists the 1st year as 6'9, 195. I would bet that he might not be quite 6'9 and he probably isn't even 195. If he doesn't weigh that much right now, there is no reason for him to play in the ACC this year. As many have expected, he will redshirt this year, and should be able to come out gangbusters in 2016.
Like many before him, Diakite will work for the year under UVa's strength and conditioning coach, Mike Curtis. Curtis is known throughout the UVa fanbase for converting UVa big men into legit-ACC big men. The physical transformations that Mike Tobey, Darion Atkins, and others went through during their time in Charlottesville was wonderful for their basketball game. Just this past season, Bennett and Co. redshirted Aussie Jack Salt to work under Curtis and learn the UVa defense. Salt will come into this season at 6-11 and 250. That's a stout big man to compliment 4th year, Mike Tobey.
Even though he is going to redshirt this season, UVa fans can look forward to the 2016 season just for what Diakite can do. He's a big man that has quite a presence around the hoop and knows how to get up to slam it home......
With moves like that, Cavalier fans should be quite giddy about 2016 when the full class gets on grounds. Diakite will compliment, Small Forward Deandre Hunter Ty Jerome, Kyle Guy, and fellow big man, Jay Huff (who will also likely redshirt as he's 6'10 and just 180).