VESTAL (WBNG) -- The wait is finally over for Oneonta-native Alberto Odero. After 18 months of sitting and watching from the sideline, the athletic redshirt freshman will make his Binghamton debut against LIU Brooklyn Friday night at the Events Center.
Odero, who was forced to sit out games during the fall semester due to NCAA rules, will certainly add a new dimension to Tommy Dempsey's backcourt.
At 6-foot-4, the former all-state guard at Oneonta High School and then standout at St. John's Catholic Prep in Maryland, could be a dangerous weapon for the Bearcats during conference play.
This process was anything but easy for the 20-year-old.
"At first, I'm not going to lie, it was a struggle adjusting to the college level, college speed, but now I feel ready, very ready right now," Odero said after practice on Thursday.
Odero says he wouldn't have been able to get through it without family, teammates and the Binghamton coaching staff.
"It just feels like a big weight off my shoulder," added Odero. "Finally I get to play. I've been waiting for this for like a year and a half now. That's a long time without playing. My family is going to be [at the game Friday], so I'm just happy. I'm very happy right now."
But despite feeling ready, how much playing time can fans realistically expect to see from the Oneonta-native against the Blackbirds?
"He'll definitely get in the game, but he has to come out and earn it, too," explained Binghamton head coach Tommy Dempsey. "We've been playing well. It's my job to mix him in because he's a very talented kid. We're counting on him moving forward, but I don't think you're going to see a ton of him in game one, but we will definitely get him out there and get his feet wet."
So on a scale from 1 to 10, just how excited is the redshirt freshman in advance of his debut Friday night?
"I'm like a 20," exclaimed Odero. "I'm very excited. I just can't contain it. I don't know how to show it, but I'm very excited right now."
Odero and the Bearcats take on LIU Brooklyn Friday night at 7 p.m. at the Events Center.