Bul Kuol

Australian basketball player

Bul Kuol
Kuol with the Cairns Taipans in 2022
Sydney Kings
PositionShooting guard / small forward
Personal information
Born (1997-01-10) 10 January 1997 (age 27)
NationalitySouth Sudanese / Australian
Listed height201 cm (6 ft 7 in)
Listed weight94 kg (207 lb)
Career information
High schoolLake Ginninderra (Canberra, ACT)
NBA draft2022: undrafted
Playing career2015–present
Career history
2015–2016Canberra Gunners
2021Knox Raiders
2021–2024Cairns Taipans
2023Le Mans
2024–presentSydney Kings
Career highlights and awards

Bul Kuol (born 10 January 1997) is a South Sudanese-Australian[1][2] professional basketball player for the Sydney Kings of the National Basketball League (NBL). Born in Sudan, he moved to Australia when he was nine years old and grew up in Canberra. He played college basketball in the United States for five years, four at California Baptist and one at Detroit Mercy. He joined the Cairns Taipans in 2021 and played three seasons for the club. In 2023, he had a stint with Le Mans of the French Pro A.

Early life and career

Born in Sudan,[2][3][4] Kuol grew up in a small village next to a military base that backed on to the jungle.[5] He and his family also spent time living at Kakuma, the world's biggest refugee camp located in Kenya.[6] He moved to Australia in 2006 when he was nine years old,[2][3][4] when his uncle, mother, three brothers and two sisters fled from war-torn South Sudan.[5] Kuol's father stayed in Africa to look after the rest of their family.[5]

Living in Canberra, Kuol took up basketball as a 13-year-old after a growth spurt forced him to give soccer away.[5] He attended Lake Ginninderra Secondary College and led the school to back-to-back Australian Schools Championships. He also led the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) team to a fifth-place finish at the U20 National Championships, averaging 15.6 points and 8.1 rebounds per game.[3][4]

Kuol debuted in the South East Australian Basketball League (SEABL) for the Canberra Gunners in 2015, averaging 6.0 points and 1.6 rebounds in 18 games. The following year, he averaged 8.6 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 22 games for the Gunners.[7][8]

College career

As a freshman at California Baptist in 2016–17, Kuol played in all 31 games and averaged 3.0 points and 2.2 rebounds in 14.0 minutes per game.[3]

As a sophomore in 2017–18, Kuol played in all 34 games for the Lancers with 32 starts and averaged 6.7 points and 4.0 rebounds per game. He earned Academic All-PacWest honours.[3]

In the 2018–19 season, Kuol played in 10 games to begin the season – California Baptist's first season in Division I – and then did not play again after 17 December[9] due to a back injury.[10] He made seven starts and averaged 6.3 points per game.[3]

Kuol was considered a redshirt junior in the 2019–20 season, playing in 16 games for the Lancers from 2 January onwards.[11] He averaged 5.6 points and 3.1 rebounds in 18.4 minutes per game.[3]

After graduating from California Baptist, Kuol transferred to Detroit Mercy in May 2020.[12]

In the 2020–21 season with the Titans, Kuol finished 13th in the Horizon League in regular-season scoring with 15.5 points per game, including 16.4 points in conference games. He scored in double digits 17 times in his 20 regular-season games with four 20-point outings and was subsequently named third-team All-Horizon League.[4] On 26 December 2020, he scored a career-high 28 points in a 77–75 overtime loss to Oakland.[13] On 5 February 2021, he set a new career high with 29 points in an 82–72 win over Purdue Fort Wayne.[14] He scored a team-high 20 points against NKU in the quarterfinals of the Horizon League tournament.[4] He started all 22 games for the season and averaged 15.6 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.3 steals.[15][16]

Professional career

In April 2021, Kuol joined the Knox Raiders of the NBL1 South.[17] In nine games, he averaged 18.2 points and 4.9 rebounds per game.[18]

On 13 August 2021, Kuol signed a two-year deal with the Cairns Taipans of the National Basketball League.[19] He entered the 2021–22 season having been told he was not guaranteed to be part of the rotation or receive any minutes, but due to numerous injuries to his back-court teammates, he was thrust into the line-up and quickly became one of the Taipans' most important players thanks to his defensive intensity and energy. He subsequently put himself in the Rookie of the Year discussion.[20] On 5 February 2022, he scored 26 points with eight 3-pointers in a 102–94 win over the Brisbane Bullets,[21] becoming just the third player in Taipans history to record eight 3-pointers in a game.[22] For the season, his 64 3-pointers set an NBL record for most 3-pointers by an Australian rookie and he became the first rookie in NBL history to finish inside the Top 5 for 3-pointers in a season.[22] He also finished the season with a team-high 26 starts and recorded the team's second-most minutes played over the season.[22] He was subsequently named the NBL Rookie of the Year.[23]

On 16 May 2022, Kuol recommitted to the Taipans for the 2022–23 season.[22] He averaged 10.3 points and 3.7 rebounds per game.[24]

On 28 February 2023, Kuol signed with Le Mans of the French Pro A for the rest of the 2022–23 season.[24]

On 9 June 2023, Kuol re-signed with the Taipans for the 2023–24 NBL season.[25] He averaged a career-best 12.7 points, 1.7 assists and 0.5 blocks per game, to go with 3.1 rebounds and 0.7 steals.[26]

On 30 April 2024, Kuol signed a three-year deal with the Sydney Kings.[26]

National team career

In 2022, Kuol was selected to play for the South Sudanese national team in the FIBA World Cup Qualifiers.[1][27] He played for South Sudan in further qualifiers in February 2023.[24]

Kuol missed the 2023 FIBA World Cup due to a wrist injury.[28] He was named in South Sudan's 2024 Olympics squad.[29]


  1. ^ a b "Kuol Not Wasting Surprise NBA Chance". NBL.com.au. 22 June 2022. Retrieved 23 June 2022.
  2. ^ a b c "Bul Kuol". Taipans.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "Bul Kuol". cbulancers.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  4. ^ a b c d e "Bul Kuol". detroittitans.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  5. ^ a b c d Gaskin, Lee (18 January 2014). "For Sudanese refugee Bul Kuol, basketball offers huge opportunities". smh.com.au. Archived from the original on 19 January 2014. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  6. ^ Moodie, Anthea (17 July 2023). "From a refugee camp to qualifying for the Basketball World Cup, the Cairns Taipan's Bul Kuol is at the top of his game". abc.net.au. Archived from the original on 19 July 2023.
  7. ^ "Bul Kuol". australiabasket.com. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  8. ^ "Bul Kuol". SEABL. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  9. ^ "Bul Kuol 2018–19". sports-reference.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  10. ^ Robin, Brian (4 November 2019). "Cal Baptist men's basketball tries to follow up last season's successful D-I debut". pe.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022. Kuol, one of the most versatile and athletic players in the conference, played only 10 games last year due to a back injury.
  11. ^ "Bul Kuol 2019–20". sports-reference.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  12. ^ "Source. Cal Baptist grad transfer Bul Kuol has committed to Detroit". twitter.com/JonRothstein. 5 May 2020. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  13. ^ "Oakland gets first win, an overtime thriller against Detroit Mercy". detroitnews.com. 26 December 2020. Archived from the original on 16 May 2021. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  14. ^ "Davis carries Detroit over Purdue Fort Wayne 82-72". foxsports.com. 5 February 2021. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  15. ^ "Bul Kuol". sports-reference.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  16. ^ "Bul Kuol 2020–21". sports-reference.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  17. ^ "Bul Kuol returns to Knox after college stint". NBL1.com.au. 14 April 2021. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  18. ^ "Bul Kuol". NBL1.com.au. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  19. ^ "Taipans Complete Roster with Bul Kuol". NBL.com.au. 13 August 2021. Archived from the original on 1 January 2022.
  20. ^ Pike, Chris (12 February 2022). "Bringing Defence, Energy Will Let the Rest Flow for Kuol". NBL.com.au. Archived from the original on 12 February 2022.
  21. ^ "Kuol, Deng Fire Snakes to Big Win over Bullets". NBL.com.au. 5 February 2022. Archived from the original on 5 February 2022.
  22. ^ a b c d "Taipans retain both league award winners". Taipans.com. 16 May 2022. Archived from the original on 16 May 2022.
  23. ^ "Jaylen Adams Crowned MVP". NBL.com.au. 27 April 2022. Archived from the original on 27 April 2022.
  24. ^ a b c "Bul Kuol, final piece of the MSB puzzle". msb.fr (in French). 28 February 2023. Archived from the original on 2 March 2023. Retrieved 2 March 2023.
  25. ^ "Kuol commits to Cairns". Taipans.com. 9 June 2023. Archived from the original on 9 June 2023.
  26. ^ a b "Kings make free agency splash with Bul Kuol signing". SydneyKings.com. 30 April 2024. Archived from the original on 30 April 2024.
  27. ^ "Bul Kuol laps up whirlwind NBA opportunity en route to South Sudan". ESPN.com.au. 22 June 2022. Retrieved 24 June 2022.
  28. ^ Pender, Kieran (17 August 2023). "'Where the real wins are': basketball's rising star Bul Kuol on the other World Cup inspiring a nation". theguardian.com. Retrieved 18 August 2023.
  29. ^ Woods, Dan (8 May 2024). "Family behind Kuol's Olympic drive". NBL.com.au. Retrieved 9 May 2024.

External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Bul Kuol.
  • Cairns Taipans profile
  • NBL1 profile
  • California Baptist Lancers bio
  • Detroit Mercy Titans bio
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