BYU’s rebuilt men’s basketball roster has already taken a big hit.
Sophomore forward Wyatt Lowell, who sat out last season after transferring from Utah Valley, announced on Instagram on Wednesday that he will undergo surgery this week for an injured shoulder.
The Cougars began practices with the coaching staff on Monday.
Lowell wrote: “Hey, y’all. I’m heading into surgery today. I tore my labrum playing basketball last week. I’m super sad but this stuff happens and I’m excited to get back with my guys asap. Go cougs!”
The 6-foot-10 Lowell was the Western Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year in 2018-19 for the Wolverines under current BYU coach Mark Pope, shooting 38% from the 3-point line (41 of 109).
After sitting out at BYU during the 2019-20 season, Lowell was expected to fight for a starting role this season. His unique skill set as a long-distance shooter set him apart from a logjam at the forward position.
Lowell’s former teammates at Utah Valley, center Richard Harward and guard Brandon Averette, are also on the BYU roster. Jim McCullough, the play-by-play radio voice for the Wolverines, praised Averette when he chose to come to Provo as a grad transfer this spring. He also had a strong opinion about Lowell.
“To be honest with you, the best player BYU picked up from UVU is Wyatt Lowell,” he said. “He has a chance to go down as one of BYU’s all-time greats. He was just starting to feel himself at the end of his freshman year at UVU (2018-19) when he was WAC Freshman of the Year. He’s had a whole year to work on his game.”
Last fall, BYU forward Gavin Baxter suffered a torn labrum during fall workouts. He was expected to miss the season but came back to play the final seven games of the 2019-20 campaign.
With Lowell out, the Cougars still have plenty of options in the post with 7-3 Purdue transfer Matt Harms, Baxter, Harward, Kolby Lee and freshman Caleb Lohner.