LOGAN — For any college basketball team, senior night is normally a time of celebration. For Utah State, this is the second consecutive year senior night has been more about wondering what could have been.
Last year it was Brady Jardine. This year it is Kyisean Reed who will be honored despite having been lost for the season because of an injury. The senior night ceremony will take place immediately before the Aggies (20-9, 10-7) tip off against UT San Antonio in the regular-season finale for both squads Saturday night.
“My wife mentioned that last year with Brady (Jardine) and now with Kyisean, that’s two tough senior nights in a row,” head coach Stew Morrill said. “It will be tough seeing him out there, but he certainly deserves to be honored.”
Reed tore his ACL back on Jan. 17 at New Mexico State, ending what was looking to be a very promising senior season. During the 2011-12 season Reed spent as much time in Morrill’s doghouse as out of it. He was criticized for playing too soft in the middle and for letting teams beat him with their physicality.
This season Reed was a whole new player. His points per game jumped to 12.1 from 10.0 and rebounds a game moved to 6.5 from 5.1. Away from the stat sheet there is no measuring the extra energy he brought to the team with an array of highlight dunks and improved attitude and leadership.
“I was really pleased with how Kyisean approached the year as a senior,” Morrill said. “He tried to be a leader, tried to be vocal, just a whole new guy.”
Instead of worrying about Reed’s jump shot or toughness on the court, Morrill is now more concerned with his senior's life off the court.
“My main wish for Kyisean is that he gets his diploma,” Morrill said. “He’s so close to that. It’s promising that he’ll finish that up.”
No matter the outcome against the Roadrunners (8-20, 3-13), the Aggies are locked into the fifth seed at next week’s WAC tournament in Las Vegas. Utah State will match up against UT Arlington in the first round Thursday night.
Aggies on the Air
Texas San Antonio (8-20, 3-13 WAC) at Utah State (20-9, 10-7 WAC)
Saturday, 7 p.m. MST
Dee Glen Smith Spectrum (10,270), Logan
TV: KMYU TV
Radio: Aggie Sports Network
Kraig is a 2010 Utah State University graduate and regular Deseret News sports blogger. He can be followed on Twitter at DesNewsKraig.