SALT LAKE CITY — Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak acknowledged that the Utes are looking to make a high-profile addition to their non-conference home slate next season.
“We potentially have one game left to schedule and we’re looking to try to find the right game,” he said. “We’d like to find a marquee home game.”
Krystkowiak noted, however, that when trying to schedule a home-and-home series, everybody wants to play at home first. There are several teams Utah is talking to, including Georgetown and other programs with connections Krystkowiak has around college basketball.
Although Utah’s final non-conference schedule won’t be announced until later this summer, a home game with Tulsa and road games at Missouri and Kentucky are already set. So, too, is a meeting with BYU in the Beehive Classic at Vivint Arena, as well as participation in the Wooden Legacy tournament in Fullerton, California. The latter includes a field featuring Fresno State, Grand Canyon, Hawaii, La Salle, Miami, Northwestern and Seton Hall.
The Utes will have plenty of new faces in 2018-19, with eight players from last season’s team that reached the NIT championship game no longer with the program. Graduation losses include Justin Bibbins, David Collette, Tyler Rawson and Gabe Bealer. Kolbe Caldwell, Jake Connor (Westminster) and Chris Seeley (Fresno State) have transferred to other schools, while Jakub Jokl requested his release.
Krystkowiak noted they have a lot of kids coming back (including Sedrick Barefield and Donnie Tillman), a big grad transfer in center Novak Topalovic (Idaho State), a nice freshman class, and a highly sought-after junior college standout in Charles Jones, Jr.5 comments on this story
“I think it’s a nice combination — some good kids coming in and a nice nucleus to build off of,” Krystkowiak said. “It’s a new chapter.”
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Utah men’s basketball current roster
Seniors: G Sedrick Barefield; C Novak Topalovic; G Parker Van Dyke
Juniors: F/C Jayce Johnson; F/C Brandon Morley; F Marc Reininger; G Beau Rydalch; G Charles Jones, Jr.
Sophomores: G Christian Popoola; F Donnie Tillman
Freshmen: F Timmy Allen; F Riley Battin; G Naseem Gaskin; G Vante Hendrix *; G Brooks King; G Kevin Kremer; F Lahat Thioune
* Formerly Devante Doutrive (undergoing a legal name change)