#58 Utah Men's Basketball 2020-2021 Preview

Utah Utes
2020-2021 Overall Rank: #58
Conference Rank: #8 Pac-12 Conference
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It was an up and down 2019-20 season for the Utah Utes as they were only one game above .500 overall and won just seven games in conference play. The signature wins for the Utes included a 69-66 win over Kentucky on December 18, 2019 along with a 102-95 win over in-state rival BYU earlier in December. Overall, head coach Larry Krystkowiak has a very good program at Utah despite the challenges of last season with a very youthful roster. Now, the challenge for Krystkowiak and his staff will be to take that next step with this young core of players and get back to winning 20 plus games a year.
2019-20 Record: 16-15, 7-11
Coach: Larry Krystkowiak
Coach Record: 171-126 at Utah, 213-146 overall
Key Departed Players:
Both Gach, Guard, 10.7 ppg
Key Returning Players:
Timmy Allen, Junior, Forward, 17.3 ppg
Rylan Jones, Sophomore, Guard, 9.6 ppg
Alfonso Plummer, Senior, Guard, 8.4 ppg
Riley Battin, Junior, Forward, 7.8 ppg
Branden Carlson, Sophomore, Center, 7.0 ppg
Mikael Jantunen, Sophomore, Forward, 6.7 ppg
Jaxon Brenchley, Sophomore, Guard, 4.2 ppg
Lahat Thioune, Sophomore, Center, 1.8 ppg
Eli Ballstaedt, Sophomore, Guard, 1.8 ppg
Brooks King, Junior, Guard, 0.8 ppg
Key New Players:
Luc Krystkowiak, Redshirt Freshman, Guard
Brendan Wenzel, Redshirt Freshman, Guard
Pelle Larsson, Freshman, Guard
Ian Martinez, Freshman, Guard
Jordan Kellier, Sophomore, Guard, Transfer from Williston State
Timmy Allen should be one of the top players in all of the Pac-12 heading into the 2020-21 season. Allen averaged 17.3 points per game last season along with 7.3 rebounds per games to lead the Utes in both categories. One area of Allen’s game that does need to be cleaned up is turnovers as he had 95 of those and just 92 assists. Rylan Jones, Riley Battin, and Branden Carlson will also return this season in the starting lineup as all three players will be looking to take a step forward with their offensive production with opposing teams focusing a lot of attention on Timmy Allen. Alfonso Plummer should continue to provide some instant offense off the bench as he averaged 8.4 points per game and knocked down 42 percent of his three-point shots during the 2019-20 season. Consistency on the defensive end of the court will have to improve for Utah in order for them to jump to the top half of the Pac-12 conference this season. If that happens then a trip to the NIT should be in play for the Utes.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NIT
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 70.9 (180th in nation, 5th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 70.3 (201, 11)
Field-Goal Percentage:44.9 (114, 4)
Field-Goal Defense: 44.0 (241, 11)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game 7.1 (196, 7):
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.5 (167, 7)
Free-Throw Percentage: 73.0 (106, 6)
Rebound Margin: 2.7 (104, 5)
Assists Per Game: 14.0 (98, 4)
Turnovers Per Game: 13.5 (211, 9)
Madness 2020 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#93 Ian Martinez