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BYU’s Mark Pope Shoulders Blame For Loss Of Ques Glover Over NIL

Aug 11, 2023, 9:06 PM

BYU Basketball, Mark Pope, NIL...

BYU basketball coach Mark Pope said he takes the responsibility for the loss of Ques Glover to an NIL deal. (Nate Edwards/BYU Photo)

(Nate Edwards/BYU Photo)

PROVO, Utah – BYU basketball coach Mark Pope has shown he can get high-level prospects to come to Provo. Look at former Purdue center Matt Haarms spurning Kentucky for BYU in 2020.

But that was before Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL).

Since the NIL era kicked in on July 1, 2021, the recruiting game has changed–especially in college basketball.

Pope is entering his fifth year at BYU, his first as a Power Five head coach. He’s guiding BYU into an unprecedented situation in the Big 12 Conference that will feature matchups with National Championship contenders Kansas, Houston, and Baylor, to name a few.

Along with an unprecedented new league home, Pope is navigating the unprecedented challenge of losing a transfer that never played a game for him.

Mark Pope explains why Ques Glover left BYU

Last week, former Samford guard Ques Glover abruptly left BYU during two-a-day practices in preparation for a foreign trip to Italy and Croatia. Glover had signed with BYU three months prior. Why the sudden departure? NIL.

“It was all NIL,” Pope said on Friday about why Glover left BYU.

“I was super sad about it. He’s a beautiful young man, a perfect fit for BYU, enormously talented player with a ton of miles. So we’re really sad to lose him, for sure.”

Glover was projected to be a pivotal piece to BYU’s backcourt along with sophomore Dallin Hall, junior Jaxson Robinson, and senior Spencer Johnson.

Last season at Samford, Glover averaged 14.7 points, 2.1 assists, and shot nearly 40% from three-point range. Before two years at Samford, Glover played two seasons in the SEC at Florida. He’s in his final season as a collegiate athlete.

During an interview with KSL Sports in May, Glover said he picked BYU because of his “relationship with the coaching staff.” He noted that Coach Pope and him FaceTimed a lot through the recruiting process, and when he ultimately visited BYU, “it felt like home.”

Where did the Ques Glover NIL deal go sideways?

Fast forward to Friday, when asked for a follow-up if the NIL issues with Glover were with BYU’s official collective, The Royal Blue, or an agent, Pope said the following:

“So that’s where things get really complicated. It was a very simple NIL issue,” said Pope.

The fifth-year coach then explained his role in working close to BYU’s collective, The Royal Blue.

“So my job, what the rules allow, the rules allow me to fundraise on behalf of a NIL entity. The rules allow me to connect current student-athletes with NIL entities. They actually allow me to provide space for them to meet. I can’t do any of that with prospective student-athletes. But I can do it with current student-athletes and I’ve got to do a better job right now.”

35-40% of Mark Pope’s day is spent on NIL

The loss of Glover leaves BYU with two scholarships available on the 2023-24 roster. A slight worry compared to the rigors of navigating the NIL space.

“It is probably 35-40% of my day is trying to win over the hearts and minds of anybody to listen in terms of helping us with this collective,” Pope said. “Tom [Holmoe] and Brian [Santiago] have done an unbelievable job of giving us guidance on that. I’m not getting the job done in terms of rallying the troops. It’s my job. So I’m taking it really seriously. So I’ll probably elevate the amount of time I’m spending on it because it is a defining feature of college basketball right now.

“It’s the new challenge that we’re facing and it’s my job. So I’ve got to do a better job. You want to point the finger at why Ques Glover is not here, it’s on me because I didn’t get the job done. The job I can [do], that’s the job I need to do.”

BYU will have three more days of two-a-day practices before leaving for Italy and Croatia on August 18. The trip will conclude on August 28.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow Mitch’s coverage of BYU in the Big 12 Conference on Twitter/X and Threads: @Mitch_Harper.

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BYU’s Mark Pope Shoulders Blame For Loss Of Ques Glover Over NIL