A Fairfield Prep senior signed a national letter of intent Nov. 13 morning at the school, formally committing to continue their athletic careers in college.

Paschal Chukwu, of Westport, will play basketball at Providence College.

Chukwu, who is 7-foot-2 inches tall and 220 pounds, is in his fourth year of playing basketball after growing up with soccer in his native Nigeria. He has lived with his guardians in Westport, John and Sheila Featherstone, since he attended Trinity Catholic in Stamford for his first two years of high school before transferring to Prep for the 2012-13 school year.

Chukwu was a reserve attacker for the Jesuits' Class LL boys soccer state finalists in 2012 but did not play this year.

But Providence College was aware of his potential in basketball -- particularly his stellar junior year -- and Chukwu's relationships with the Friars' head coach Ed Cooley and his staff helped him along in his decision.

"It's a good feeling to get this event done with before the season starts, so I can focus on basketball," Chukwu said at the ceremony in the school's guidance office. "Obviously it's a growing program.

"I'm a shot blocker and I can rebound. My offense is a work in progress."

Chukwu's abilities helped him garner many postseason honors after the Jesuits finished as runners-up to Hillhouse in Class LL last winter. He was named All-State and All-SCC (Quinnipiac Division) as well as a Hearst Super 12 Boys Basketball All-Star. Chukwu, who played sparingly at Trinity Catholic, averaged 13.7 points per game last season for Prep and added 12.1 rebounds and 6.8 blocks per game.

"He worked religiously on getting stronger," John Featherstone said, "working out four times a week. And he's worked equally as hard on his academics, if not harder." Chukwu was 7-0 and 188 pounds when he came to live with the Featherstones in 2010.

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