"It works because when you come off a mission, you aren't ready, and it helps to have guys like Lee, Jimmer or guys who have been in the program, or JC guys who can contribute right away," said senior Jackson Emery, who has been part of Rose's success from the start.
"It's not like he has a farm and has to plant seeds and wait for it to grow. It's the perfect storm where you're going to have these guys to build on for several years and then have guys come in who don't have to contribute right away. Then you figure the pieces and make them fit."
Rose has gambled that a guy like Emery can leave, return, and still be good.
He's also avoided emotional meltdowns that kill chemistry, like you see on squads with out of control egos in shorts.
Emery said, "The hardest thing is dealing with the scholarship thing, seeing who is coming off missions, who is going, what position is needed now, what is needed later. All those variables make things complicated but I think coach is really good. Where some plan year to year, here at BYU you have to recruit pretty much a four- or five-year plan. It puts a pretty big twist on the recruiting process."
According to Emery, Rose uses great communication skills with players, and it avoids creating drama as year to year the Cougars change faces more than other schools may.
If you leave a player in the dark as to his role, it can cause expectations that aren't reality. And Rose nips that quickly, said Emery. He did it with Plaisted and Cummard, and has done so with Tavernari, Emery and Fredette.
"The player knows what he has to live up to, not only this season but the next," said Emery. "At BYU, you recruit not only good players but good people. You have to be a good person as far as work hard in school, live the honor code, et cetera, et cetera. With those type of high class people you know there is going to be less drama because they are understanding and willing to work together and I think that is a pretty big factor in why we get along."
Like at Air Force?
"Exactly. At Air Force, their players are good guys. They are disciplined, and they understand their roles and are happy to be on the team and be playing. It's a similar position to what we have, although, I think they have to endure more discipline off the court in school."
What if Tyler Haws was not in the Philippines right now?
"Yeah, I think about it," said Emery. "But what if Lee had gone on a mission? This would probably be his last year. There are always what-ifs; what-if Plaisted had gone on a mission, what would this year be?
"You can think about what-ifs with everything. How good would we be with Mike Loyd right now, if he was still here?
"But that's just basketball. You can't worry about it. Michigan State went to the Final Four and kicked off four players the next year. You can only worry about who you have."
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