In August, senior wing Isaiah Otyaluk announced he would be transferring to Word of God Christian Academy (NC). Around a month later, he announced he would be furthering his basketball career at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, or UTC.
Chattanooga head coach Dan Earl made Otyaluk a priority, and it paid off for him in the end. “I’m their number one recruit for 2024. I love the environment there, and I will be playing good minutes; their goal is to get me freshman of the year. ” The wing says that vision and Coach Earl making him a priority are the primary reasons he chose UTC.
Otyaluk is looking forward to continuing to build that relationship with the headman once he arrives in Chattanooga next season. “What stood out about Dan Earl is he has a good, friendly personality, but he holds players accountable when need be. He was very welcoming when I came to campus.”
When he traveled to Chattanooga for his visit, Otyaluk had a feeling of home. “What I loved about the city of Chattanooga is there is a good amount of things to do, good restaurants, and nice people. It gave a very home-like vibe,” he said. That carried over to when he met the team. “The coaches and players have great personalities. They were very welcoming and work hard.”
Finding the right fit on the court is a crucial element of the recruitment process, and Otyaluk believes he has found just that. “I see myself fitting in with their fast-paced perimeter play style. Also, they are positionless, so I can still put the ball on the floor as a guard when need be and play freely.” Finding the right fit off the court is just as important. “I see myself fitting in off the court because I work hard because everyone there is a hard worker, and it’s going to be nice to be surrounded by that.”
For Chattanooga fans wondering what Isaiah Otyaluk will bring to the program, the phrase he uses is obsessed. “I would say they are getting someone who is obsessed with getting better and also a good teammate.”