Ute women’s basketball star Daneesha Provo will have a sixth college year

Scott Sommerdorf | The Salt Lake Tribune Utah Utes guard/forward Daneesha Provo (23) shoots a first half free throw. Oregon defeated Utah 84-68, Sunday, January 28, 2018.

Utah women's basketball player Daneesha Provo has received a sixth year of eligibility from the NCAA, enabling her to play for the Utes in 2019-20 after her college career apparently had ended with a knee injury in January.

Provo played for Clemson in the 2014-15 season, so her standard five-year clock expired in 2019, counting the year she sat out after transferring. A combination of having withdrawn from Clemson for personal reasons in January of her freshman year and being injured in Utah’s Pac-12 opener last season worked in her favor in the eligibility case, the school said.

Provo’s return is a nice bonus for coach Lynne Roberts’ team that lost senior forward Megan Huff, the team’s leading scorer, and Pac-12 Freshman of the Year Dre’Una Edwards, who transferred to Kentucky. The Utes will have other capable offensive players, including freshman Lola Pendande, who played well for Spain in this summer’s FIBA U19 Women’s World Cup.

“Undoubtedly, Daneesha makes us better,” Roberts said in Utah’s news release. “But even more so, I am really thrilled for Daneesha personally. This has been such a challenging nine months for her.”

Provo said, “One thing I realized is that everything always ends up working out, sometimes even better than I can imagine.”

The native of Nova Scotia averaged 12.3 points in 2017-18 and was scorings 13.5 points last season, before being hurt. Provo was injured in Utah’s loss to Arizona State to begin conference play, after the Utes stood 11-0. The team was 18-1 and ranked No. 14 nationally before fading and eventually finishing the season with seven active players, after Edwards was injured. Roberts turned down an WNIT bid after a quarterfinal loss to Washington in the Pac-12 tournament, completing a 20-10 season, as she cited the welfare of her worn-down players.

Provo graduated from Utah in May in human development and family services and intends to pursue another degree in sociology.