Former men’s basketball coach Dave Rose may have retired from BYU, but the Cougars still found their way back to him.
Rose will again be a bench boss as he takes on the role of coaching Team Fredette in The Basketball Tournament, an upcoming tournament with a $2 million dollar winner-take-all purse. The first round will take place in eight cities across the United States and feature 64 teams, with the first games in Salt Lake City scheduled for July 25. Any professional basketball player from around the world is permitted to play in the event, as long as they are not on an NBA contract.
Rose was approached by Jimmer and TJ Fredette about coaching Team Fredette, an offer he said he couldn’t refuse after checking his calendar and noticing he had yet to schedule anything on the days that the tournament would be played.
Rose will coach Team Fredette alongside Jimmer, who recently signed a professional contract with Panathinaikos in Greece, along with TJ and BYU Hawaii alum Paul Peterson. The team has yet to have any practices, though Rose didn’t seem to be too concerned about the state of the team.
“I think these guys all understand that spacing is the key to be able to score, and we’ll figure out the best way that we can find space for the scorers,” Rose said. “I don’t think it’ll be real complicated.”
Jimmer won’t be the only familiar face for Rose as Team Fredette will also feature Tyler Haws, BYU’s leader in career points scored. Haws comes to the team after playing professionally in Spain, Poland and Canada. Despite the lack of practices as a team, Haws shares a laid-back attitude with Rose, and said having everyone on the same page will be the toughest task, but that’s a task every team must face.
Rose compared coaching Team Fredette to a team he coached during the 2011 NBA lockout. At the time, Jimmer and NBA superstar Kawhi Leonard assembled an “All-Star Game” that took place in the Marriott Center on Sept. 22, 2011. Jimmer and Leonard had both been drafted in that year’s NBA draft — 10th and 15th, respectively — and decided they would create a game to showcase young talent.
“I coached Jimmer’s team and Steve Fisher coached Kawhi’s team and that’s about what it feels like,” Rose laughed. “It’s got about that much attention.”
The game featured many future NBA players, including Leonard, Kemba Walker, Tobias Harris, Isaiah Thomas, Kenneth Faried and Bismack Biyombo. Rose coached Team Jimmer, and compared this to where he currently finds himself because of the similarity of having a team of unfamiliar players playing in a game with little preparation.
Aside from coaching Team Fredette in the tournament, Rose has still been able to keep himself busy. Though the tasks in his life have changed, the business of his schedule hasn’t, and the general feel of his life has stayed the same despite not coaching full time. Rose is keeping his eyes on Panathinaikos’ and Barcelona’s schedules in hopes that he can see Jimmer and another former BYU basketball star, Brandon Davies, when they play one another in the EuroLeague.
There was a lot of speculation surrounding Jimmer’s status for The Basketball Tournament now that he is no longer on a contract with a NBA team, but Haws and Rose both think Jimmer will just take on the coaching role for Team Fredette, not a player role. With a newly signed contract with Panathinaikos, it seems as if Jimmer is wanting to play it safe by staying on the sidelines and not risking injury.