LARAMIE – Tyler MormAn played multiple positions on the football team in high school, and also was a pitcher on the baseball team.
He didn’t start playing basketball until he was in the 10th grade.
“I wasn’t as good as everyone else, so I was told to play hard, play my role, and I will develop into everything else. I’m still developing my game,” MormAn said.
Fast-forward about five years, and the 6-foot-9, 220-pound MormAn is experiencing what life is like as a Division I basketball player at the University of Wyoming. MormAn is one of five newcomers to the Cowboys’ 2019-20 roster.
MormAn is from Mableton, Georgia, and played the last two years at Florida Southwestern State College in Fort Myers. He will have two years of eligibility with UW.
The Cowboys needed size, and they got that in MormAn, who said he played defensive end, linebacker, safety and wide receiver in high school.
MormAn’s body looks Division I ready, and fourth-year UW coach Allen Edwards said MormAn looks “chiseled, but could still add some muscle.”
Edwards also said MormAn needs to help UW this season, especially on the boards. UW was outrebounded by nearly seven per game last season, and averaged only 30.7 rebounds per contest. Among UW’s returning big men, none averaged more than 2.9 rebounds per game.
“He is relentless about defending and rebounding,” Edwards said. “He doesn’t have an ego. He’s like, ‘play me coach and I will play hard.’”
That’s encouraging, but as UW continues with summer workouts for the entire team, first comes some learning.
“All of these new guys are trying to impress us with how hard, but they have to learn first, and Tyler more so,” Edwards said. “He needs to slow down to go fast. Once he gets the concepts down, he will be able to speed up.”
Added MormAn: “(The learning) gets frustrating sometimes, but at the end of the day they are trying to help me get better. My time in junior college helped me a lot and prepared me.”
In 33 games last season at Florida Southwestern, including 11 starts, MormAn averaged 4.4 points, 4.7 points and 12.6 minutes per game. MormAn’s team finished fifth at last season’s NJCAA Tournament. MormAn had scholarship offers from nine other Division I schools, and “looks from a lot of others.”
When asked what he thinks his role will be for UW this season, MormAn said it ranged from rebounding, defense, hitting outside shots when open and to be an enforcer in the paint.
That’s a lot for a first-year player, but nonetheless, MormAn will have a role for the Cowboys this season.
“That is definitely welcomed,” he said. “I’ve been dealing with that since I started playing the game back in 10th grade. It is nothing new.
Robert Gagliardi is the WyoSports senior editor. He can be reached at email@example.com or 307-755-3325. Follow him on Twitter at @rpgagliardi.