Over the last few days, I have had the opportunity to watch the BYU Men's Basketball team scrimmage against each other. Here are a few observations I have made.
First off, Frank Bartley is going to play point guard. I'm working as a coach of the basketball camp and every time a camper asks what position he plays, he automatically answers "Point Guard." Now this may be the mindset the coaching staff wants, but this has also shown in the play of the team. He has been the primary ball handler on every team he has played on, that I have seen. He is also showing improved ball handling and court vision as he leads the quick paced offense that Coach Rose wants to use.
The second observation of note is that Chase Fischer can really shoot it. He may be the best shooter on the team. He is dangerous from almost anywhere on the court. He is also a capable passer and ball handler, but his primary use will be as a spot up shooter on the break and off kick outs from the post players.
Speaking of post players, just like last year, this could be the weakness of this team. Nate Austin is back, and we have seen what he will bring over the last three years. Josh Sharp is extremely athletic and will be effective in spot minutes like he has been in past seasons. The two freshman posts, Dalton Nixon and Ryan Andrus, both look like freshman. Both are adjusting to the speed and strength of the athletes. Andrus gets pushed around a lot, and Nixon looks like he is stuck in mud sometimes. Hopefully, as the season approaches and they both get to really work out with the coaching staff, those weaknesses will improve. I have been extremely impressed with Jamaal Aytes. He is massive! He looks more like a football player than a basketball player, but he is extremely athletic and gets up and down the floor quickly. Also, the shooting ability of Isaac Neilson is very good. He is not very strong, but his ability to stretch defenses and with defenses actually having to guard him will help free up other players on the team. Last, Luke Worthington looks much the same as he did last year except he seems to be quicker and finishes around the basket with more touch.
Lastly, Tyler Haws is going to have another great year. Sometimes it seems as if he doesn't miss when watching him in these pick up games. Hopefully with adding other shooting threats like Fischer and Neilson to the mix it will help him find some extra shots.
Future Cougar update: Frank Jackson scored 50 points in a game in Dubai last week. He played extremely well at the tournament he was attending with Lone Peak's Club team, the Utah Reign. He averaged 32 points per game in the tournament.