BYU hoops

LLOYD: Sharp's dunk pleases Tipoff crowd but improvement of JC transfers important for team

2012-10-25T14:15:00Z 2013-11-06T21:45:27Z LLOYD: Sharp's dunk pleases Tipoff crowd but improvement of JC transfers important for teamJared Lloyd - Daily Herald Daily Herald
October 25, 2012 2:15 pm  • 

The most crowd-pleasing highlight for the BYU men's basketball team in the 2012 Cougar Tipoff Wednesday night at the Marriott Center took place when BYU sophomore forward Josh Sharp received a pass on the right side, drove past freshman center Ian Harward and went hard to the basket.

Sharp took off and threw down a powerful one-handed jam right over junior forward Agustin Ambrosino, who was coming over to help out on the play.

Did you miss it?

If so, don't worry … I'm sure it will be coming soon to a Cougar basketball poster near you.

Cougar head coach Dave Rose said he regularly sees two or three good dunks in practice but "that one tonight was pretty nice."

The BYU players watching it certainly thought so. Senior center Brandon Davies and sophomore guard Anson Winder exploded off the bench right in front of me to celebrate for a good 30 seconds after Sharp hammered it home.

"Sharp's always been that guy," said Davies, an athlete who knows a little bit about slam-dunking over people. "If he catches you sleeping, he'll put one on your head."

Davies asserted that Sharp hasn't done that to him because the senior is "smarter than that" but said every once in awhile Sharp will catch someone in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Wednesday night, Ambrosino was that guy.

How unfair is life? The transfer from Salt Lake Community College plays for the first time in front of the fans at the Marriott Center, scores 17 points on 8-of-15 shooting and grabs seven rebounds.

But what will be watched over and over is Sharp going right over him when he was just a half-step late on the defensive rotation. BYUtv already has a video showing six different angles of it.

Welcome to Provo, Agustin.

In the long run, though, Ambrosino's performance (as well as that of fellow junior college transfer Raul Delgado) will be far more important than a dunk in the Blue-and-White game, regardless of how sick the throw-down was.

Each had a chance to show the coaching staff some of the things they can do during the Tipoff exhibition.

"I saw two guys out there who are really confident in their ability to play," Rose said. "They are still trying to learn our system but both came in and made shots. Both made a lot of offensive mistakes and defensive mistakes, but they are confident in their ability to attack and score."

Delgado was also efficient, scoring 14 points on 5-of-10 shooting including three 3-pointers. He also added three assists and a couple of steals.

Those are exactly the type of contributions Rose needs from Delgado and Ambrosino.

"That's the beauty of junior-college guys," Rose said. "They can come in here and make the transition a little bit quicker. We'll need them to do that."

Scoring will be a nice addition, but to overcome the losses of Noah Hartsock and Charles Abouo to graduation, Demarcus Harrison deciding to transfer and Chris Collinsworth and Stephen Rogers to lingering injuries, the Cougars have to get well-rounded efforts from the duo — as quickly as possible.

Defense, rebounding, hustle plays, passing, those will be the most important things they can bring when they get on the floor.

Davies pointed out that since this was the first chance for the transfers to shine under the bright lights of the Marriott Center, he thought they represented themselves well.

"Both of those guys aren't really used to this type of arena," Davies said. "Our fans are amazing and we had a great turnout. They haven't had that when they've played in smaller gyms but they handled it well. This kind of helps get rid of some of those first-game jitters while still making sure they are having fun."

They certainly aren't where BYU needs them to be yet — but it's coming for them.

Sharp's dunk might dominate the highlight reel, but I thought watching Delgado and Ambrosino seek out Rose and assistant coach Mark Pope on the sideline for instruction during the game will be much more beneficial.

Plus maybe getting a little more guidance will help Ambrosino get to where he will avoid being the defender on a dunk poster in the future.

Daily Herald sports editor Jared Lloyd can be reached at 801-344-2555 or jlloyd@heraldextra.com. He can also be followed on Twitter at @JaredrLloyd.

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