BYU basketball is 21-8 on the year, and aside from a win over Utah, the season has been underwhelming for most fans.
One problem facing the Cougar Cagers has been the lack of scoring production outside of Elijah Bryant, Yoeli Childs and the occasional moments from TJ Haws. Even when BYU was first in the WCC, they’d get bench scoring from guys like Anson Winder, Matt Carlino and Skyler Halford.
BYU has had its share of attrition and player transfers over the last several years, and many of those players have gone on to find success at their respective schools.
While a change of scenery is needed for some players, one can’t help but wonder if some of the guys listed below would have been contributors this season.
Frank Bartley, Louisiana Lafayette
The former Cougar guard had his moments in Provo, but inconsistent and erratic play left many fans wanting more. After sitting out a year, Bartley has thrived in the Sun Belt Conference as one of the top scorers in the league.
After averaging 15 ppg his junior year, Bartley has gotten even better this season. The Ragin’ Cajuns are 23-4 on the year and one of the top mid-majors in the nation. Bartley is leading his team in scoring as they look to secure an NCAA tournament berth.
Out of all the guys that left, Bartley’s departure may hurt the most. He may not have done as well at BYU as he is now, but his performance lends one to believe that he would have been a significant contributor if he was still in Provo.
Jordan Chatman, Boston College
Jordan finished his degree after his redshirt freshman year at BYU, allowing him to immediately play last year as a sophomore. Now in his second year in the ACC, Chatman has become one of the best three-point shooters in the conference. The Golden Eagles are 16-12 on the season and are in the bubble conversation.
As most already know, Jordan reportedly transferred because BYU Law School wouldn’t let him play basketball and go to law school simultaneously. That may not be the whole story, however.
Last spring, Jordan’s father and former BYU hoops star Jeff Chatman tweeted the following when speaking of his son’s transfer:
Jordan also decided to pursue a MBA rather than his law degree at Boston College.
The real story is probably a combination of the things mentioned above. It is likely true that Jordan couldn’t play basketball and pursue a law degree at the same time; and considering that Jeff is a former BYU great and Jordan’s father, his story is likely true, too.
Whatever the case is, Jordan surely would have been a contributor for BYU. With his performance in one of the best hoops conferences in the country, production in the WCC likely would have been easier.
Jake Toolson, UVU
Jake Toolson had his moments at BYU, but left the program early his sophomore season for medical reasons. The Arizona native has found a home in Mark Pope’s program as an accurate shooter and one of the leading scorers for the 19-8 Wolverines.
WIth Zac Seljaas part of the program, Toolson may not have gotten many minutes if he was still at BYU. All things considered, UVU seems like a great fit for him.
Jamal Aytes, SUU
Knee injuries derailed the career of the former BYU and UNLV ball player, but Atyes has found a home in Cedar City during his final year of college hoops.
SUU is 10-15 on the year, and Atyes is the second-leading scorer and rebounder on the team.
Aytes’ minutes were limited last season, and he probably would have had a similar role had he stuck around in Provo.
Isaac Neilson, UVU
After nearly averaging a double-double last season, Neilson has seen his minutes and production dip this year with UVU averaging 7 foot Oklahoma transfer Akolda Manyang.
Neilson may have played a role the past two years, but he plays a similar style to Payton Dastrup.
Cory Calvert, UVU
The junior guard hasn’t played much a role for the Wolverines, playing in rougly half of UVU’s game this season.
With his limited minutes at UVU, he likely would be buried on the bench if were still at BYU.