Logan • Kyisean Reed will miss the crowd most of all.
Utah State’s lone senior says he’s thought about how it might feel to say goodbye to Aggies fans at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum one more time. He’s not sure if it will be like he imagined.
UT-San Antonio at Utah State
O At Dee Glen Smith Spectrum (Logan)
Tipoff » Saturday, 7 p.m.
TV » KMYU. Radio » 960 AM
Records » UTSA 8-20, 3-13 WAC; Utah State 20-9, 10-7
Series history » Utah State, 1-0
Last meeting » USU 71, UTSA 67 (Dec. 29)
About the Aggies » Utah State is celebrating Senior Night, but lone senior Kyisean Reed is sidelined with a season-ending knee injury.
About the Roadrunners » Forward Jordan Sims has reached double-figure scoring only five times this year, but he scored a season-high 20 points in the last meeting with Utah State.
He wishes he could play for them, the cheering fans who have helped make his short career at Utah State memorable.
"I’m appreciative for all the things this place has done for me," he said. "It was a great two years while I was here. I’m really pretty happy to come out one last time."
When he talks, Reed’s grin stretches nearly to his ears. He laces his words with deep, rumbling laughter.
But Reed will be remembered most for his sky-high dunks that rocked the Spectrum crowds. A gifted athlete who came to Logan by way of Antelope Valley Junior College in California, Reed’s brief but sometimes brilliant career as an Aggie was full of highlight-reel plays that left everyone in awe.
The Aggies will miss those moments against UT-San Antonio on Senior Night. A season-ending knee injury for Reed was all the more disheartening because of the strides the once-mercurial forward made in his game.
"I was really pleased with how Kyisean approached the year as a senior," coach Stew Morrill said. "He tried to be a leader, tried to be vocal, just a whole new guy."
At least twice in the 16 games before he was injured, Reed leapt up to intercept inbound passes. His length helped him shoot up to the No. 7 shot-blocker in school history despite playing only 52 games.
And, of course, there were the dunks. Against Santa Clara, Nicholls State and Seattle, he put on exhibitions, outrunning everyone in transition to take off for momentum-seizing slams. Averaging 12 points and 6.5 rebounds per game when he went down, he might have been in line for All-WAC honors.
Now, Reed is focused on two things: recovery and study. He’s hoping to finish his business degree this semester, but his torn ACL might not be healed until this fall. He’s hoping to get back more quickly — Reed is already walking around without a brace or crutches — to try to see if he can get a chance to play professionally, possibly overseas.
Reed said one of his favorite things at Utah State was watching intramural teams play: basketball, flag football, volleyball or whatever was going on. Being a spectator for the final games of his senior year has been much more difficult.
"I’ve been out there, and it’s been tough," he said. "But it’s still a way to support the team, so it’s something I’m willing to do."
Copyright 2013 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.