LOGAN — Morgan Grim grew up in the Salt Lake Valley, playing for Riverton High School, where he was named Mr. Basketball for the state of Utah by the Deseret News in 2007. He was recruited to the University of Utah, where he played two years, including the Utes' 2008-09 Mountain West championship team.
However, tonight, when Utah pays a visit to play Utah State at the Spectrum, Grim will be playing for the men in blue and white.
After his sophomore season at Utah, Grim decided to transfer and he is happy about his decision.
"It's really good; I love it," said Grim, who had to sit out as a redshirt last year.
After seeing limited action in two seasons at Utah, Grim is playing 21 minutes a game, averaging 6.0 points and 5.0 rebounds, while shooting 41.2 percent from the field and 57.1 percent from the line. The 6-foot-8, 230-pound forward is one of the core group of Aggie players and he is looking forward to playing his old team tonight.
"There's a little incentive for me this week," he said.
Grim and Utah coach Jim Boylen preferred not to go into detail about Grim's decision to leave, which was a mutual decision.
"I looked at my options and this was the best opportunity," Grim said. "It was a personal choice."
Only three players remain from Grim's time at Utah, junior guard Jace Tavita and sophomores Jason Washburn and Chris Hines, who were redshirt freshmen during Grim's second year.
Washburn was actually Grim's roommate his first season and the two still talk to each other a couple of times a month.
"I have no personal vendetta against Grim," said Washburn. "It will be good to see him. I like him. He's a good guy and he's doing well up there so far."
Tavita said he's known Grim since the two played on some travelling basketball teams in junior high school.
"It'll be fun to play against him," Tavita said.
Grim believes his Utah experience should help in tonight's game.
"I played in the system and I know it pretty well," he said.
However, he may not recognize the same system when the Utes show up tonight.
The Utes still emphasize their tight, man-to-man defense, but play a more physical, up-tempo game on offense with players driving to the hoop rather than settling for 3-point shots. In just three games, the Utes have shot 40 fewer 3-pointers than a year ago and 35 more free throws.
Utah is led by JC transfers Will Clyburn, who leads the team with 20.7 points and 7.3 rebounds per game and Josh Watkins, who averages 15.7 points and 5.0 assists per game. Other starters will be Washburn (10.0), Jay Watkins (11.0 ppg) and Shawn Glover (6.0 ppg).
Utah State will counter with Tai Wesley (16.7 ppg) and Brady Jardine (6.7 ppg) inside and transfer Brocketh Paine (11.7 ppg), Pooh Williams (8.7 ppg) and Tyler Newbold (3.7 ppg) in the starting lineup. Guard Brian Green comes off the bench and has made 10 of 15 3-pointers, while scoring 15.3 points per game.
Utes-Aggies on the air
Utah at Utah State
Today, 7 p.m.Smith Spectrum, Logan
TV: CW 30
Radio: 700 AM, 1320 AM