Dan Cosby remembers when a skinny eighth-grader named Bushman walked into his gym for the first time.
The teen was small and skinny, but the Kearns basketball coach noticed something. He saw a young player hungry to play with kids up to four years his elder — someone who wasn’t scared.
That kind of relentless style of play now is showing off for Bushman Ebet, a 6-foot-2 junior-to-be next season who will be one of the many faces of the Cougars’ program moving forward.
"I always knew his upside was tremendous," Cosby said.
If you caught any Cougar games this year, you noticed No. 1 on the basketball court. Ebet, who is athletic with a very long wingspan, picked many pockets his sophomore season, averaging 2.9 steals per game to go with 11.4 points per game.
But he’s more than an athletic wing player, Cosby said. The coach even laughed when he thought what it would be like to have more players as aggressive as Ebet.
"If only I had five Bushmans," he said.
One is enough.
Ebet’s talents will become more and more noticed as his high-school playing career progresses. He’s played varsity under Cosby for two years now and even will get some time at the point-guard position next season to work on his ball handling. That’s something the coach said Ebet must do to impress college scouts.
"Throughout the course of the year, as the season progressed, it was always there," Cosby said. "I don’t think he knows how good he can be."
In Kearns’ opening-round Class 5A tournament loss to Davis, Ebet made the crowd at the Dee Events Center jump out of their seats as he drove to the basket, using all of his 6-2 frame to slam down an emphatic one-handed dunk.
Cosby said Ebet’s father is a man of average height but added that his grandfather was a 7-footer. He said he crosses his fingers that Ebet will hit a growth spurt, which would turn a very talented, young player into a potential force.
"If he does, man, he’s going to be unbelievable," Cosby said. "I was 6-foot in sixth grade and stopped going. I hope he’s not like me."
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