Former Utah Basketball Player Both Gach Transfers Back to Utes

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Kiffer Creveling

University of Utah sophomore guard Both Gach (11) drives towards the basket during an NCAA Basketball game vs. the University of Colorado at the Jon M. Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City, Utah on Saturday, March 7, 2020. (Photo by Kiffer Creveling | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Ethan Pearce, Assistant Sports Editor

 

Former University of Utah basketball player Both Gach will return to the Utes after spending last season at the University of Minnesota. Gach announced his decision to “run it back” on Twitter Thursday. 

Gach will enter his fourth collegiate season this year. Due to the extra year of eligibility granted by the NCAA to all winter athletes last year, he will have the option to play two more seasons for the Utes. He started his career at Utah and played two seasons there under Larry Krystkowiak before transferring to Minnesota for the 2020-21 season.

The Golden Gophers were underwhelming last year, which led to head coach Richard Pitino’s dismissal and some turnover within the basketball program. Gach decided to transfer away from the team, and ended up back at Utah for his second stint, this time under a new head coach in Craig Smith. 

Gach is listed at 6 feet, 6 inches tall and 185 pounds. He can play multiple positions and switches well on defense. He figures to be a key part of Smith’s rotation this year as he attempts to put together his best collegiate season yet.

Last season was somewhat of a down year for Gach at Minnesota, as his minutes, shot attempts, assists and scoring numbers were all way down from his sophomore season at Utah. This will not be the same system as he played in under Krystkowiak, but returning to his former team will allow him to channel some of what he was doing the last time he was with the Utes. 

Gach is a huge addition to a team that has lost a lot of talent over the past few months. Utah’s task to build this team through the portal has not been an easy one, but it has opened up a lot of roster spots and minutes for new players to show their skills.

The opportunity for playing time on this roster was likely attractive to Gach when picking his transfer destination, as was the familiarity. He will have the opportunity to play a lot, showcase his abilities, and improve his stock for if and when the pros come calling.

He has a chance to earn a starting job and help the Utes as they navigate this transition year in 2021-22, as well as potentially even returning for a fifth collegiate season in 2022-23.

 

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