Three Things Caleb Lohner Would Bring to BYU Basketball

Casey Lundquist

Caleb Lohner
Getty Images

Caleb Lohner signed with Utah as part of the 2020 recruiting class. Reports surfaced yesterday that Lohner asked to be released from his NLI (national letter of intent) because he wanted play for BYU. UteZone was the first to report the news. Lohner was recruited by the likes of Kansas State, Texas, Baylor, and Texas A&M.

It's unclear whether Utah will release Lohner from his NLI. If they do, Lohner will be eligible to play for BYU this season. If they don't, he would need to transfer and apply for a NCAA waiver to play for BYU basketball next season. Assuming Lohner ends up in Provo, here are three things Lohner would bring to the program:

1. Shooting

Like many recruits BYU has prioritized, Lohner would immediately bring outside shooting to the floor. Lohner's shooting stroke is as pure as it gets - he's got a quick release and his 6'6 frame (listed at 6’6 on 247 Sports, 6’9 on high school website, probably around 6’8) helps him shoot comfortably in traffic.

2. Facilitating

Lohner doesn't possess the ball skills of a Point Guard but he's able to bring the ball up the floor and start the offense. In the system that BYU runs, it's helpful to have multiple guys who can bring the ball and create different offensive sets. Lohner sees the floor well which BYU will be able to utilize.

3. Good Athleticism

Evaluating Lohner's athleticism is unique - he prefers jumping with both feet. He's very athletic off two feet but his vertical substantially decreases when he jumps off only one foot. Jumping off two feet is slower so some players that prefer jumping off two feet can struggle to get their shot off around the rim. Lohner possesses the athleticism to be a solid finisher when he has the time and space to jump off two feet.

Lohner will need to improve his lateral quickness to defend at the next level. There's a lot to like about Lohner's game - he has the potential to make an immediate impact for BYU.

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Comments (4)
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Casey Lundquist
Casey Lundquist


Welcome! Appreciate your comment, I think you provide a great perspective.

Honestly I can see both sides. Utah's staff would have every right to be upset about this. In theory, they could have filled Caleb's spot with another player but didn't.

On the other hand, I can understand Caleb's perspective. He has more information about the trajectory of both programs than he did when he signed with Utah. Coach K has done a lot for Utah basketball but the attrition rate at Utah is alarming. Utah has lost key players for multiple years in a row.

I'd love to hear Caleb's side of the story here - I'm sure we will in the coming weeks/months. I understand your recommendation to keep your word and commitment - I think our society in general needs more of that. My only problem with that is that it's lopsided in college sports. Coaches are allowed to move jobs without penalty but players are forced to sit a year.


I can see why Caleb might re-think his commitment, with the enthusiasm around Coach Pope, etc. I certainly hoped he would have signed with BYU at the time, but wisdom might suggest he give Coach K at least a year:

  1. Too little emphasis is placed by parents and society on keeping one's word and/or commitments. Consequently, individuals of every generation are becoming moral cripples. I've taught both of my children (who are close to Caleb's age), "Your integrity and reputation are money in the bank." Because something seems convenient or expedient, doesn't always make it right.
  2. Coach Pope did great his first year. Sure, I want his success to continue, but to assume he'll automatically have as great a 2nd year might be premature.
  3. Coach K is a good coach and has shown what he can do with good players.

I don't care for everything Coach K has said or done, but I DO respect him. He's the first Utah Men's Basketball coach in a couple decades, who's made me fear Utah Basketball again. That's a good thing for all of college basketball in the state.

The glee of a few BYU fans of "sticking it" to Coach K might be a little short sighted.


His offensive game and body type reminds me a lot of Mekeli Wesley. Big and solid, 4 type build but great hands and a jumper as soft as butter. If he ends up having to sit a year that would be great because there will be a log jam of players trying to get time in the 3 and 4 spots.

The year off would give him time to work with BYU S&C coaches to better develop lateral quickness. They have done wonders with BYU players that past several years since we hired that NBA guy to oversee that for us.

If he does end up coming he will be a really nice addition and anytime we can stick it to 80K and the Uties that’s awesome!