Shungu headed to Germany

Former Rice and UVM star signs with Riesen Ludwigsburg in Basketball Bundesliga
Former Rice and UVM star signs with Riesen Ludwigsburg in Basketball Bundesliga
Former Rice and UVM star signs with Riesen Ludwigsburg in Basketball Bundesliga
Published: Jul. 12, 2022 at 3:06 PM EDT
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - From dominating the Vermont high school hoops scene to six seasons as a Catamount, there’s not a whole lot Benny Shungu didn’t accomplish on the hardwood in his home state.

“Obviously six years is a different amount of time for any college basketball player,” Shungu said.

But with two degrees in tow and his eligibility expended, it came time for Shungu to move on from UVM this Summer.

“Late May, graduating. Next step for me was just figuring out where I was going to continue my professional career and figuring out where I would be able to continue my basketball career,” Shungu said.

Like most young hoopers, Shungu’s dream has long been to play pro basketball, particularly in the NBA.

“Well my goal obviously was to try to see if I could get into the NBA and see if i could get my foot in the door with one of these teams,” Shungu said.

But despite getting some looks, the first-team All America East selection didn’t get the call to play in the Summer League this year. So he had to scope out his other options.

“None of these teams really came calling, so with that, just kinda had to figure out a different avenue,” Shungu said. “An offer from overseas came up, and me and my agent talked about it, talked about the G-League, and just felt like this offer in Germany is the best fit.”

Shungu ultimately chose Germany, signing a one-year deal with Riesen Ludwigsburg in the Basketball Bundesliga.

“Going to Ludwigsburg and having that team be one of the top leagues in Germany, it’s definitely a great situation to go into,” he said. “As a kid, you don’t really know if you can just have dreams and you try to do as much as you can to follow that path and stick on that path and hopefully one day it comes to reality and so now we’re here.”

He won’t be the first former Catamount to play in Germany.

“I talked to Trae Bell-Haynes, talked to just other people that I’ve known that have gone overseas and played over there,” Shungu said. “I think just right off the bat, that mindset, mentality is really just competing at a high level and going about their business and wanting to be the best that they can.”

Shungu says he’s looking forward to getting the chance to prove himself on the pro stage and seeing what he and his new team can accomplish...but he also hopes his journey can serve as inspiration for younger Vermonters.

“Following your dreams and sticking to being dedicated,” Shungu said. “Putting in hours and hours of dedication to whatever craft you pursue is definitely something that I hope rubs off on kids in Vermont. And whoever wants to play basketball or kind of anything they want to do in life so hopefully I can be that role model for sure.”

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