Jarred DuBois, the transfer from Loyola Marymount who had a fairly quiet season for Utah, chose the best time to get the ball rolling.
Down by three points to Cal, DuBois dribbled the ball around to the left side of the arc, two men on him, stepped back into a long contested 3-pointer and drained it. After sending the game into overtime, he continued to inspire to a 10-point victory.
In the game before that, three minutes remained in the game with USC closing the gap. DuBois took the game in his own handsby hitting back-to-back jumpers, one being a 3-pointer, and then finding center Jason Washburn for a dunk to end a 12-0 USC run and regain some distance.
“I was just trying to make plays,” the senior guard said following the USC game. “I think it’s important as a senior that you try to do whatever you can to win.
“Early in the season I don’t think I did a good job of that, so I’ve tried to do a better job of either getting a rebound, a stop, a charge, or tonight it was make a big play by scoring or getting the open guy the ball.”
Utah fans will remember these plays and the unexpected playoff run for years to come. Despite the lack of national attention during the Utes’ Pac-12 tournament victories, Ute followers know the impact the final push their team made has on the future of Utah basketball.
This being a push that would have been hard to come by with out the play of DuBois.
Ute coach Larry Krystkowiak admitted that he believes DuBois put in the most time away from practice out of anyone on the team and he is pleased to see that work paid off for the senior guard.
“There is not a kid, if there is a kid in college basketball, that puts more time in away from practice in terms of shooting, repetition,” he said. “I’m talking hundreds and hundreds of shots a day. So when you give yourself an environment like this, I’m a firm believer in the basketball gods. It’s pretty special knowing the kinds of hours he puts in.”
Sadly DuBois struggled, like the rest of the team, against Oregon in the Pac-12 semifinals, a game that sealed their 2013 campaign fate.
Despite not making it to the Pac-12 Tournament finals, Utah finished the season on a roll and the Runnin’ Ute seniors left everything they had on the court.
There’s no shame in the season and the way the Utes competed to the end.