Report: Rapper J. Cole to Sign Contract to Play in Basketball Africa League

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMay 10, 2021

Rapper J. Cole performs at halftime during NBA All-Star basketball game, Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)
Chuck Burton/Associated Press

Rapper J. Cole is signing a deal to appear for the Basketball Africa League's Rwanda Patriots, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic.

The New Times first showed him in Rwanda on Sunday:

The New Times (Rwanda) @NewTimesRwanda

#BREAKING: American rapper J. Cole @JColeNC is in Rwanda and could feature for local side Patriots at the upcoming Basketball Africa League. The New Times has learned he is on the club's roster for the competition. https://t.co/mhHOBCAvhx

Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated reported that the move is expected to be announced Thursday after the rapper clears quarantine.

The team's first game is against Rivers Hoopers on Sunday. Per Charania, J. Cole is expected to play a minimum of three games for the team.

The Basketball Africa League is set to begin its inaugural season, featuring 12 teams from different countries looking to be named the best in the continent. The tournament will take place in Rwanda to limit travel amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Patriots earned their spot in the BAL thanks to winning a qualifying tournament, defeating Madagascar's Gendarmerie Nationale Basketball Club in the final.

They appear set to be getting help from J. Cole, who has showcased his basketball skills plenty of times in the past:

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

This dunk is 4 Your Eyez Only @JColeNC https://t.co/AnttMh4MwO

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

J. Cole was holding his own against Trae, Melo and JR 😈 (via @Cbrickley603) https://t.co/TMzUDtGOBf

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

.@JColeNC's got serious range 🎯 (via @Cbrickley603) https://t.co/2M5tAKhChw

The 36-year-old will have a new challenge ahead of him as he takes on some of the best professional players in Africa.