The University of the Fraser Valley men’s basketball team endured another departure last week, as starting centre Jasper Moedt elected to transfer to the University of Alberta.
Moedt follows former Cascades head coach Barnaby Craddock and shooting guard Joel Friesen in joining the Golden Bears program this off-season. Craddock was hired away by the U of A in early June, and Friesen decided shortly thereafter to follow him to Edmonton.
Moedt took an additional month to evaluate his options, but ultimately determined it was time to experience something new.
“When Barnaby left, it was a chance to step back and say, ‘Where am I going with my life, what am I doing,'” he said.
“Leaving UFV wasn’t easy. It’s been great going there, being in my community, and I’ve learned a lot. But at the same time, I’ve lived my whole life here now, and I feel like I need to move away for personal growth.”
Moedt, a 6’7″ centre, teamed with Friesen to help Abbotsford’s Yale Secondary Lions win the B.C. AAA high school title in 2008. Last season, he led the Cascades in rebounding at 7.6 boards per game, and also averaged 10.7 points, fourth-best on the team.
He chose the Golden Bears over Montreal’s Concordia University, and familiarity was a factor. His parents had attended the U of A, he has family in Edmonton, and he knows Craddock well.
Moedt, like Friesen, will have to red-shirt next season due to transfer rules. Both have two years of playing eligibility left.
For Moedt, sitting out a season allows him the luxury of getting completely healthy. He played with a torn labrum in his right shoulder last year, and underwent surgery after helping UFV to a fourth-place finish at the CIS national championships.
“It would pop out two or three times a game,” he said. “It would be two or three minutes of extreme pain, and then I’d forget about it for five minutes, and then it would go again.”
New Cascades head coach Adam Friesen (no relation to Joel) said the rest of the players on the UFV roster are committed to returning, and added he’s looking to bring in some new players to replace Moedt and Joel Friesen.
As it stands, there’s still plenty of talent on hand, from fifth-year stars Kyle Grewal and Sam Freeman to promising youngsters like sophomore Jordan Blackman and rookie Luke Morris.
Of Moedt, Adam Friesen said “We wish him the best.”