Former Utah State Guard Steven Ashworth Sheds Light On NIL, Transfer Portal

Apr 27, 2023, 4:19 PM

LOGAN, Utah – Before settling on the Creighton Blue Jays, former Utah State guard Steven Ashworth learned a tremendous amount about the business of college basketball.

Ashworth joined Hans & Scotty on the KSL Sports Zone to discuss his transfer portal experiences on Thursday, April 27.

Even after officially entering the transfer portal on April 6, there was not a foregone conclusion he would leave Logan.

“It was something that I thought about for days before I felt like I was in a position to make this decision and go into the portal,” Ashworth said of his thought process.

“Utah State has meant so much to me and my family. Utah State was the school who gave me the chance. Who gave me the platform to be the player I am and be in the position I am today.”

Despite not being able to finish his college career at USU, Ashworth hopes he can one day return with his family.

“There’s been some great moments there as an Aggie. It’s a place I want to be able to go back and experience the Spectrum as a fan when I’m older.”

RELATED: Sprinkle Rounds Out Utah State Men’s Basketball Coaching Staff

Steven Ashworth Focused on Situation, Not NIL

With NIL cash seemingly being thrown around like Monopoly money, Ashworth, a marketing major, used the recruiting pitch from schools to filter out those that wouldn’t be a good fit for his future goals.

“There’s definitely both sides of it,” Ashworth said of the approach coaches used to woo him after entering the portal. “Schools will come with the NIL pocket first and then try to pitch, ‘Hey, we also have some good things going with our basketball program.”

“When a coaching staff led with, ‘Hey, this is how much you can make here…’, I kind of put those schools on the back burner.”

His thinking? Ashworth felt more connected to the schools that focused on the program’s goals and helping players reach their individual ceilings.

“For me personally, it was much more appealing when I think the NIL aspect kind of came secondary.”

RELATED: Utah State Names Danny Sprinkle New Men’s Basketball Head Coach

Eyes on NBA Career

Listed at 6’1 and 170 pounds, Ashworth’s NBA prospects might seem slim, but it’s his shooting ability that will determine how far his career can take him.

RELATED: Utah State Signs Idaho Vandal Forward Nigel Burris To 2023-24 Roster

Ashworth leaves USU on the heels of a First-Team All-Mountain-West season that saw him reach career-best numbers in several categories. Ashworth finished the 2022-23 season as the eighth-leading scorer in the Mountain West at 16.3 points per game. He led the league in free throw percentage (.889), three-point percentage (.450), and threes made per game (3.2). Ashworth also led USU with 4.7 assists per game, the fourth-best mark in the conference.

“I think that the way I can shoot the ball and play-make in the pick & roll, I do have a chance to play in the NBA,” Ashworth said of his goals after college.

“There are some elements of my game that I’m excited to work on this offseason. To try and prove myself in a conference like the Big East.”

KSL Sports coverage of Utah State University Athletics can be found here. 

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Former Utah State Guard Steven Ashworth Sheds Light On NIL, Transfer Portal