Jake Toolson is officially a Cougar.
Toolson, who graduated from Utah Valley University this month, will enroll at BYU as a graduate transfer and be eligible to play in 2019-20.
Of all the moves new Cougar coach Mark Pope has made since taking over the job a month ago, this one might be the biggest. The 6-foot-5 Toolson was an Associated Press Honorable Mention All-American and the Western Athletic Conference Player of the Year for the Wolverines last season.
Toolson played his first two seasons at BYU (2014-16) before opting to transfer to UVU and play for Pope early in his sophomore year.
He joins a guard line that will include senior T.J. Haws — the team’s leading returning scorer — and Gonzaga transfer Jesse Wade.
“I’m out of my mind hyped,” Pope said. “I’ve been incredibly blessed to have the honor of coaching Jake Toolson for the last several years. I’ve watched him grow from a talented young player to one of the most efficient offensive threats in the country. As one of the most highly sought-after grad-transfers in America, Jake turned down the likes of Duke and Virginia to come here and put on a BYU uniform. As the reigning WAC Player of the Year and an All-American, and most importantly a great teammate and leader, Jake is going to leave his mark at BYU — in the locker room, in the classroom, in the community and on the court.”
The 2019-20 Western Athletic Conference Player of the Year averaged a team-best 15.7 points while adding 4.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists while leading the Wolverines to a record of 25-10 in 2018-19. The Gilbert, Arizona, native was one of the most efficient shooters in the country last season as he shot 53.7 percent from the field, 44.8 percent from 3-point range and 85.1 percent from the free-throw line. According to Kenpom.com, Toolson was top 50 in the country in effective field goal percentage (36th at 63.1 percent) and true shooting percentage (16th at 67.3 percent).
Toolson hit a 3-pointer in all but four games in 2018-19 and hit a career-best 6 of 9 against Chicago State. He scored a season-high 26 points in home wins against New Mexico State and Seattle.
As a sophomore in 2017-18, Toolson averaged 10.9 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.9 assists while shooting 49.6 percent from the field, 35.7 percent from 3-point range and 84.6 percent from the free-throw line. He scored a career-best 27 points on 12 of 15 shooting in a win at Idaho State. Following the season Toolson was named to the WAC All-Newcomer Team.
Toolson played his first two collegiate seasons at BYU. In 36 games, he averaged 2.8 points and 1.5 rebounds while posting a shooting line of 43.4/39.0/100.0.
Prior to BYU, Toolson prepped at Highland High School in Arizona where he played for Derrick Donaldson. He scored 2,007 career points as a four-year letterwinner. As a senior at Highland, Toolson earned first-team all-state honors while averaging 27.3 points, 12.1 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.6 steals per game.
Toolson and his wife Sarah have a son Gus who was born in September 2018.