One Team All Green

Former Oklahoma State Guard Commits to UVU

Tulsa World

UVU men’s basketball head coach Mark Pope has turned the program into Transfer U. The 2017-18 roster had just three players who weren’t transfers. Zach Nelson came straight from Yuba City High School. Joonas Tahvanainen came from Finland. And Richard Harward came from Orem High School. 

Everyone else is a transfer. Three BYU transfers, three Salt Lake Community College products and a mix of other schools fill the roster. On April 18, Pope announced another transfer, Casdon Jardine of Boise State, committed to the Wolverines. And, now, UVU is picking up another transfer in former Oklahoma State guard Brandon Averette. The sophomore guard averaged 6.3 points and 2.9 assists for the Cowboys as he played in all 36 games.

According to a source, Averette is very similar to UVU guard Brandon Randolph saying that Averette is “a Brandon Randolph on steroids type of guard.”

“I think he’s probably faster than a cheetah,” said UVU head coach Mark Pope. “He will continue the extraordinary legacy of point guard play at Utah Valley. Brandon has a calm, hungry demeanor that is going to translate into some tremendous leadership for our team. His athleticism is unparalleled in college basketball. I couldn’t be more excited to coach Brandon. He’s incredibly talented. Our expectation is that Brandon will help us continue the upward trajectory that our team has been on over the past three years. I really believe that he can help us take it to another level.”

Due to transfer rules, Averette will have to sit out a year but will take his redshirt so he will have two years to play in Orem. 

Averette had some really positive things to say from his official visit over the weekend of April 27 and why he committed to UVU.

“It was really everything. It felt like everything was genuine,” Averette said. “And really, everybody wanted me to be there. I just pictured myself being there and being really successful. Everything played a part in it.”

One thing that may have played a huge role in Averette’s decision is having Ben Nakwaasah on the roster. Averette and Nakwaasah played together at Richardson High School in Texas.

“I knew about Utah Valley because Ben Nakwaasah, me and him played together in high school, so I kind of watched and kept up with him … being up there with him, working with him during my redshirt year, helping him get better every day will be real fun.”

Here is a potential starting lineup for the 2019-20 season: Brandon Averette, Jake Toolson, Wyatt Lowell, Casdon Jardine and Baylee Steele. Pretty crazy to think about. Either way, Pope has pulled out all the stops and picked up another prized possession. 

And with two weeks left in the signing period, there may be more news out of the UVU camp. For now, UVU added a key piece of the puzzle for the 2019-20 season. 

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