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Seneca Knight receives waiver to play for BYU men’s hoops

By Staff | Sep 24, 2021

Former San Jose State guard Seneca Knight has had his waiver approved by the NCAA and can play immediately for the Cougars. (San Jose State Courtesy Photo)

The last piece to the BYU men’s basketball roster puzzle has fallen into place.

Former San Jose State and LSU guard Seneca Knight, who signed with the Cougars this summer, has received a waiver for the NCAA to be able to play immediately.

The NCAA hasn’t been denying a lot of transfers due to a ever-fading lack of power and the pandemic, but BYU fans were still gripping a little until official word came down from Knight himself on social media.

Knight averaged 17 points, six rebounds and 2.4 assists per game in 2019-20 at San Jose State with 30-point games against UNLV (30), Nevada (34) and Colorado State (37), all on the road. He opted out of the 2020-21 season after just four games due to concerns over the COVID-19 virus and entered the transfer portal, eventually choosing LSU.

Knight never played for the Tigers and re-entered the transfer portal over the summer.

Knight has been practicing with BYU for more than a month. His height (6-foot-7) and skill set (guard/forward) gives the Cougars plenty of versatility no matter where he plays. Knight can get his own shot and attempted more than 200 free throws during his full season with San Jose State in 2019-20. As a long defender, Knight can provide the perimeter defense BYU lacked last season, especially in its first round NCAA Tournament loss to UCLA.

The makeup of the Cougars 2021-22 roster is interesting. Nine different players from last season have moved on: Matt Haarms and Brandon Averette will play professionally overseas; Connor Harding transferred to Utah Valley; Wyatt Lowell transferred to Snow College; Kolby Lee transferred to Dixie State but ended up leaving the team; Jesse Wade retired from the team due to injury; walk-on Cameron Pearson entered the transfer portal; Brandon Warr gave up basketball to concentrate on academics and redshirt Townsend Tripple left on a church mission.

Senior and leading scorer Alex Barcello decided to return for an additional year and will be joined by returnees Caleb Lohner, Gideon George, Spencer Johnson, Trevin Knell, Gavin Baxter and Richard Harward.

In addition to Knight, BYU also signed former Illinois and Milwaukee guard Te’Jon Lucas. The incoming freshmen class includes Wasatch Academy’s Fousseyni Traore, Tanzanian native Atiki Ally Atiki and American Heritage guard Paora Winitana.

Timpview’s Nate Hansen, Pleasant Grove’s Casey Brown, Olympus’ Jeremy DowDell and American Fork’s Trey Stewart are all returning from church missions, which brings the number of players new to this season’s roster to nine.

That’s quite a bit of change-over and a challenge for Pope and his coaching staff to continue claiming the “best locker room in America.”

The Cougars begin fall practice next Tuesday with their first game an exhibition against Colorado Christian on Nov. 4.

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