Flory Bidunga Heads To Gainesville For Official Visit

The Gators may not have a game this weekend but it doesn’t mean it’s not a big couple of days for Florida basketball as they are hosting a big name in the 2024 class–Flory Bidunga.


Bidunga is a post player who is currently the 4th ranked player in 2024, and his trip to Gainesville is significant news for a Florida staff who wants to make a major recruiting splash. 


Originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Bidunga was identified by an NBA camp which took him to Indiana where he now plays at Kokomo High School. Florida has sent staff members to watch him on multiple occasions and Bidunga returning the favor by heading to Gainesville should be a good sign that he’s interested in what the Gators are offering. Carlin Hartman is thought to be the lead recruiter for Bidunga, but multiple staff members have travelled to see him play. 


This is an official visit, one of the first the Gators have hosted–though they have had a large number of elite 2024 kids already come to campus on unofficial visits. 


Standing at 6’9” and 215, Bidunga is a dynamic post player who will first wow you with his athleticism but also impress with his skill set that is rapidly growing. When he first came to America he was mostly a high-motor, run and jump center but he’s already shown since then that he can handle the ball a bit, drive, and hit the mid range jumper. Given how smooth the midrange is you’d have to think that the three-point shot could be in his arsenal by the time he gets to college and if so he’ll be even more dangerous. 


Right now the team considered to be in the lead for Bidunga is Cincinnati, to the point where there was even a crystal ball on 247Sports placed for Cincinnati months ago. Days after that crystal ball was placed the Gators travelled to Indiana to offer Bidunga in person, so it’s safe to say that Todd Golden and company aren’t going to be intimidated in recruiting and they weren’t going to be phased by the perception that Bidunga was going to Cincinnati. At the time Bidunga also said he was potentially close to making a decision–perhaps something that was pushed by Cincinnati who was hoping for the commitment–but it’s now months later and he hasn’t made his choice and is booking official visits so it seems his recruitment is open. 


Adding to the conversation surrounding Bidunga’s commitment are rumors that he would be open to reclassifying to the 2023 class. It’s unknown whether or not the Gators would push for that, but it’s certainly a possibility that it would be Golden’s preference. The Gators are set to graduate Colin Castleton which would leave a massive hole in their frontcourt and they could sell Bidunga on a featured role on the inside. There will be a whole lot of points and rebounds available when Castleton leaves, and if Florida wants Bidunga in 2023 they could sell him on the vision of him claiming that production.


Bidunga is rapidly getting better, but a reclassification is always a bit of a gamble and he might be best served to stick to the 2024 class. He is known to take his academics very seriously, something that will weigh into both his reclassification decision as well as his choice of what school he’ll attend. 


The official visit for Bidunga will go from December 31st to January 2nd and he isn’t considered to be on commitment watch, as he’s likely going to schedule more official visits to other schools. 

Eric Fawcett
Eric is a basketball coach and writer from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. His work has been found at NBA international properties, ESPN, Bleacher Report, CBS Sports, Lindy's and others. He loves zone defenses, the extra pass, and a 30 second shot clock. Growing up in Canada, an American channel showing SEC basketball games was his first exposure to Gator hoops, and he has been hooked ever since. You can follow him on Twitter at @ericfawcett_.