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Utah men's basketball is bringing back another former Ute to serve as its director of basketball operations.
The Tribune has learned that Chris Jones will be formally announced as a hire no later than Friday and possibly as soon as Thursday evening. Chttp://www.cachevalleydaily.com/sports/article_b0954b86-632e-11e6-8b3e-8bf18fa2ba3a.html">ache Valley Daily reported earlier in the week that Jones was expected to take a job with the Utes after spending the last eight years at Utah State.
Jones played for the Utes for two seasons (1993-94) under Rick Majerus. He previously served the director of ops and an assistant with the Utes for a stint between 2005 and 2008, and was also a video coordinator between 1995-97.
He has strong ties to Utes assistant Tommy Connor, playing under him and serving on staff with him at Utah and later at Westminster.
Jones served under USU coaches Stew Morrill and Tim Duryea in Logan. While a director of operations role limits on-road recruiting, Jones handled much of the Aggies' in-state recruiting during his tenure.
It may be important to note that the Utes are recruiting Jones' son. A guard in the 2019 class, Rylan Jones was recently ranked a top 150 prospect in his age group by 24/7 Sports. http://bit.ly/WZ7syu">The Utes offered him in 2014 when he was entering the eighth grade, and https://twitter.com/trevorphibbs/status/766093678959919105">Tribune colleague Trevor Phibbs recently reported that Jones was joining Olympus.
The Utes generated some controversy last season by taking in Utah State transfer David Collette, who will become eligible to play after the fall semester. Now to replace Phil Cullen (http://bit.ly/2ajrdeH">who left to join the San Antonio Spurs), the Utes bring in another Aggie this time on staff.
The Utes are scheduled to resume their men's basketball series with Utah State in the 2017-18 season as part of the Beehive Classic if there's any hard feelings between programs, perhaps they will be settled on the court.
Other items of note, particularly in light ohttp://espn700sports.com/interviews/larry-krystkowiak-utah-basketball-head-coach-8-18-16/">f an ESPN 700 interview coach Larry Krystkowiak did on Thursday morning with Bill Riley:
• Sedrick Barefield won't be able to play until December. The Utes were hoping http://bit.ly/1Q6hLJd">to get a waiver from the NCAA late in the game, but have also planned for this scenario. Said Krystkowiak: "He's going to be available around Christmastime and he'll be ready to roll when we start conference play, but he won't be able to start the season with us."
• Krystkowiak talked a bit about Chris Seeley, http://bit.ly/2b6IN31">the program's most recent signee. He's expected to add depth at the 4-spot for the Utes. "Extremely athletic, tough-minded kid. Had a great summer. He brings a different dimension to our team in terms of athleticism and some of the things he can do above the rim. Maybe not as skilled and polished, but I know he's excited." The Utes will officially announce his addition when classes start.
• Jakub Jokl is finally in town. http://bit.ly/1XnTVLJ">The 6-foot-11 Czech national spent the summer playing internationally and hence wasn't among the Utes who came in during the summer to condition and work out together. He's joining the team for their first big team event as school starts, which is ...
• Navy SEALS training is this weekend. The Utes sound like they're intensifyinghttp://bit.ly/1DJDKQQ"> their SEALS experience into a whole weekend, doing the standard on-campus drills they've done the last few years, but also heading off-campus to a ranch for more than they've done in the past. "They're going to be sore for a while. … We're going to head to a private ranch to camp out and kinda take them into some survival stuff build a fire, tie a knot, that sort of thing and have some fun along the way. We're kind of graduating into a new territory."