The VICE Guide to Right Now

This Star High School Basketball Player Turned Out to Be a 30-Year-Old Man

Jonathan Nicola, who hails from South Sudan, has been posing as a 17-year-old basketball prodigy for the past six months and living with his coach.

by VICE Staff
Apr 21 2016, 2:54pm

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Jonathan Nicola has an amazing jump shot. He's a 6'3", 200-plus pound monster who can absolutely posterize anyone dumb enough to try to block his path to the hoop. He's also a star basketball player at Catholic Central High School in Windsor, Ontario, and his coach believes he's got a good chance of going pro.

There's just one problem—turns out Jonathan Nicola is a 30-year-old man.

Nicola, who hails from South Sudan, has been posing as a 17-year-old basketball prodigy in Canada for the past six months and living with his basketball coach, Pete Cusumano (no relation to Tony Soprano's neighbor).

According to the Windsor Star, the Canadian government has figured out that the guy in size 16 sneakers dunking on children is not a child himself, and he has been arrested for violating the Immigration Refugee Protection Act and will remain in custody with the Canada Border Services Agency until a hearing scheduled for next week.

As Deadspin reports, this is far from the first time someone has lied about his or her age to join a prep school team. But it's certainly one of the most brazen.

Last January, Nicola spoke to the Star about how much nicer life in Canada was compared to his home country. "A few of my friends [at school] know of my background, how we live over there," he told the Star. "I don't know how many of them have a clue of how it is in Africa."

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