Former Tribune Player of the Year Jesse Wade transfers from Gonzaga to BYU

Ex-Gatorade Player of the Year must sit out a year before playing for Cougars

Chris Detrick | The Salt Lake Tribune Davis' Jesse Wade (10) runs around Brighton's Brock Miller (3) and Brighton's Derek Devashrayee (14) during the 5A semifinal game at the Dee Events Center Friday February 27, 2015. Brighton defeated Davis 64-62.

Gonzaga’s loss is rival BYU’s gain. At least, that’s what the Cougars hope.

Former Davis High basketball star Jesse Wade announced via Twitter on Wednesday afternoon that he will transfer to BYU, GU’s West Coast Conference rival.

Wade played for the Bulldogs for one season after returning from an LDS Church mission to France. He averaged 1.3 points and appeared in 20 games, all off the bench, for Gonzaga in 2017-18.

Gonzaga coach Mark Few gave the 6-foot-1 guard an unconditional release, but Wade must sit out a year at BYU, per NCAA transfer rules.

“From Kaysville to France to Spokane, I’m extremely grateful for the places that my life has taken me and the people that I have met,” Wade tweeted. “With that being said, I am excited to say that I have decided to come home and further my basketball career and education at BYU.”

Wade’s sister, Olivia, is on the BYU women’s soccer team.

He was ranked as the No. 1 recruit in the state of Utah by ESPN.com and 247sports.com after his senior season at Davis. He averaged 17.6 points per game and led the Darts to the 5A state semifinals, where they lost to Lone Peak. He was named the Utah Gatorade Player of the Year.

BYU coach Dave Rose said last month that his 2018-19 roster already includes 15 players, but he was still pursuing a transfer or two who would have to sit out this season.

Still, Wade’s presence gives the Cougars a valuable practice player. He will be a redshirt sophomore when he is available to play in 2019-20.

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