Dalton Nixon, a 6-8, 210 pound forward, will suit up for the Cougars a little sooner than some thought. BYU Basketball announced today that the Orem High School product has decided to postpone his missionary service and will be available to the Cougars for the 2014-15 basketball season.
According to Brandon Gurney of the Deseret News, Nixon will pay his own way to play for the Cougars this year.
Dalton will pay his own way this season and not take up a scholarship and then leave to serve his mission to Boston following this season— Brandon Gurney (@BrandonCGurney) June 3, 2014
BYU Head Coach, Dave Rose had this to say about Nixon in BYU release:
“Dalton will be a great addition to our roster. He had a great high school career and won a lot of games. He’s very skilled and has good size. We’re excited to have him.”
Nixon's availability to the Cougars this season gives BYU some much needed depth in the frontcourt. BYU will be without star freshman, Eric Mika, for the next two years as he serves an LDS mission of his own in Rome, Italy. Mika was an important part of BYU's offense last season, averaging 11.8 points per game as a starter for the Cougars. The remaining returning frontcourt players for BYU (Nate Austin, Josh Sharp, Luke Worthington) only combined to average 6.2 points per game last season.
The Cougars will add talented UNLV transfer, Jamal Aytes, to the roster this upcoming Fall, but due to the timing of Aytes transfer he will not be eligible to join the Cougars until mid-season. Nixon is a smart basketball player with a high basketball IQ that will be able to contribute for the Cougars right away and help the Cougars before and after Aytes becomes eligible. He has above average passing skills and is the kind of player who tends to mike the right "basketball plays".
Nixon averaged 20.2 points and 8.9 rebounds as a senior at Orem High this past season. He has the ability to stretch the floor with a decent stroke from the three-point line. He also runs the floor in transition well, which is obviously very important in Dave Rose's system. He should make a great addition to the 2014-15 Cougars.