Former UNC player Ademola Okulaja dies at 46

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Tuesday, May 17, 2022
Former UNC forward Ademola Okulaja is seen playing for Germany in the World Basketball Championships on Aug. 27, 2006, in Saitama, Japan.
Mark J. Terrill-AP

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) -- Ademola Okulaja, a former University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill men's basketball player, has died. He was 46.

Our newsgathering partners at the News & Observer confirmed his death with the university on Tuesday.

Okulaja played for the Tar Heels from 1995-99, spanning the end of iconic coach Dean Smith's career and into the Bill Guthridge era.

He was a part of two Final Four teams and counted stars Vince Carter and Antwan Jamison among his teammates.

The 6-foot-9 Okulaja was a native of Nigeria but moved to Germany as a child.

Okulaja averaged 13.9 points and 8.4 rebounds as a senior in 1998-99. He was named first-team All-ACC that season.

He later played professionally in Europe and represented Germany in two FIBA World Cup tournaments.

His cause of death has not been revealed.

Read more at the N&O.