Meet the Candidates

Updated: Apr 5, 2019

The question on the mind of many BYU fans is who will be the successor to Dave Rose. Coach Rose had led the BYU basketball program for 14 years until his retirement last week. Coach Rose led the Cougars to 348 wins and 8 NCAA tournaments in his 14 years. Cougar fans hope that whoever is hired can build on that and take the Cougars to new heights. So lets get to know the candidates.

Mark Pope

  • Played 2 Years at the University of Washington before transferring to Kentucky (1991-1996)

  • Won an NCAA championship at Kentucky (1996)

  • 2nd round pick by the Indiana Pacers (1996)

  • Played in the NBA and Europe (1997-2005)

  • Georgia, Assistant Coach (2009-2010)

  • Wake Forest, Assistant Coach (2010-2011)

  • Hired by Dave Rose to be an assistant at BYU (2011-2015)

  • Utah Valley, Head Coach (77–56)(2015-Present)


  • Has head Coaching Experience

  • Understands BYU

  • Known as a great recruiter for high school players and transfers


  • Looking for a bigger job

  • Similar style to Coach Rose, wouldn’t bring a big change.

  • Hasn’t had as much success as anticipated at UVU (No NCAA Tournament or NIT appearances)

Mark Madsen

  • Played at Stanford (1996-2000), led them to a final 4 in 1998

  • Selected 29th overall by Lakers in 2000

  • NBA titles in 2001 and 2002

  • Utah Flash NBA D League, Assistant Coach (2009-2010)

  • Assistant at Stanford (2012-2013)

  • Head coach of LA D-Fenders D League (2013)

  • Promoted to player development (2013)

  • Lakers Assistant (2013-Present)


  • NBA experience, can be used in recruiting

  • Would be great at relations with boosters and fans

  • Player Development


  • Only has spent 1 year as a head coach (D League)

  • Limited recruiting experience

  • Has only spent one year as a college coach

Barret Peery

  • Played at Southern Utah & Snow College (1991-1995)

  • Southern Utah, Assistant Coach (1995-96)

  • Snow College, Assistant Coach (1996-97)

  • Utah Valley, Assistant Coach (1997-98)

  • Southern Utah, Assistant Coach (1998-02)

  • Portland State, Assistant Coach (2002-03)

  • College of Southern Idaho, Head Coach (2005-08, 85-19), Assistant Coach (2003-05)

  • Utah, Assistant Coach (2008-11)

  • Indian Hills CC (IA), Head Coach (2011-14)

  • Arizona State, Assistant Coach (2014-15)

  • Santa Clara, Associate Head Coach (2016-17)

  • Portland State, Head Coach (2017-present)


  • Has coached and has connections all over

  • Considered a good recruiter

  • Has always been a winner (217-59 head coaching record)


  • Limited connections to BYU

  • Hasn’t stood out at Portland State

  • Would his style (Up-tempo and full-court defense) fit at BYU

Quincy Lewis

  • Played 2 years at Dixie College, and 2 years at Wagner (1989-1993)

  • BYU-Hawaii, Assistant Coach (1995-97)

  • Utah Valley State College Assistant Coach (1997-02)

  • Southern Utah Assistant Coach (2002-03)

  • Lone Peak High School Head Coach (2003-15)

  • BYU Assistant Coach (2015-present)


  • Already has a relationship with the players

  • Won a National Championship at Lone Peak

  • Could recruit well in Utah


  • Limited experience outside of BYU

  • Fans want to see a change in the program

  • Not a flashy or exciting hire

Kevin Young

  • Played at Middle Georgia and Clayton State (2000-2004)

  • Shamrock Rovers (Ireland), Assistant Coach 2006-2007

  • Utah Flash NBA D League, Assistant Coach (2007-2010)

  • Utah Flash, Head Coach (2010-2011)

  • Iowa Energy NBA D League, Assistant Coach (2011-2013)

  • Delaware 87ers NBA D League, Assistant Coach (2013-2014)

  • Delaware 87ers, Head Coach (2014-2017)

  • Philadelphia 76ers, Assistant Coach (2017-Present)


  • Head Coaching experience

  • Player development

  • NBA experience is a recruiting tool


  • No college experience

  • No connection to BYU other than being LDS

Alex Jensen

  • Played at University of Utah (1994-2000)

  • Played in Europe (2000-2007)

  • Saint Louis University, Assistant Coach (2007-2011)

  • Canton Charge NBA D League, Head Coach (2011-2013)

  • Utah Jazz, Assistant Coach (2013-Present)

  • German National Team, Assistant Coach (2015-Present)


  • Rising star in the coaching world

  • Great offensive mind

  • International connections

  • NBA experience is a recruiting tool


  • Likely not interested

  • Limited college experience

  • Unknown as a recruiter

These six candidates all have different strengths and weaknesses, and while the pool of potential head coaches at BYU is always limited, there are many candidates who could do a great job. The coaches in the NBA, Madsen, Young and Jensen, are all very intriguing, but does being an NBA assistant translate into being a good college head coach? The three candidates currently in the college game, Pope, Lewis and Peery, are all very different. Coaches Pope and Peery have both consistently won in their current positions, but neither has led their team to a conference championship and the NCAA tournament. Coach Lewis was a very accomplished High School Coach, but is he qualified to be the head coach at a school like BYU?

With each coach there are questions, and with each coach there is potential. Whoever BYU hires needs to surround themselves with the right assistants to get the job done and start winning. I think in the right situation each of these candidates could find success, hopefully Tom Holmoe and Brian Santiago are able to hire the coach who is ready to win now.

Follow @bluebrethren on twitter to stay up to date on the cougar coaching search

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