Kentucky Wesleyan adds two coaches and transfer to Men’s Basketball Program

July 31, 2021 | 12:04 am

Updated July 30, 2021 | 4:53 pm

Graphic by Owensboro Times

The Kentucky Wesleyan Men’s Basketball Program has announced the addition of AJ Youngman to the basketball roster, as well as two new assistant coaches in Tyler Bezold and Travis Owsley.

Youngman comes to KWC by way of the University of Idaho, where he played four games in 2020-21 before opting out of the season due to Covid-19. Prior to his stint at Idaho, Youngman played a year at Otero Junior College, averaging 9.7 points and 3.5 rebounds per game on 45.8% shooting from three. Youngman started his career at Eastern Kentucky University, where he played in all 28 games for the Colonels as a freshman, starting in six.

“I chose Kentucky Wesleyan College because of their rich basketball tradition,” said Youngman. “The alumni base is heavily involved and they really care about the current students and their futures.”

The 6’5″ shooting guard played his high school ball at Peoria Manual high school in Peoria, Illinois, where he helped lead them to a third-place finish in state in 2015.  

“AJ is a prolific shoot that will add even more size, strength, and experience to that position. He eats, sleeps, and breathes basketball,” said head coach Drew Cooper. “With his size and strength, we have a chance to field a team with long, polished wings that will hopefully give us a physical advantage.”

In addition to Youngman, KWC alumni Tyler Bezold and Travis Owsley have both been named to the 2021-22 coaching staff.

Bezold graduated from KWC in 2020 and played two seasons for the Panthers. Head Coach Drew Cooper is very high in Bezold, saying “Tyler is going to be a great college coach. He always had an extremely high basketball IQ and was very vocal as a player. Coaching is in his blood, and I’m thrilled we are able to help him get his career going. I know he’ll be great for our program.”

Bezold played in 40 games during his two years at Kentucky Wesleyan, starting in 24 of them. “I’m extremely honored and excited to come back to a school with such a great history and a bright future,” said Bezold. “I had a great two years playing for Wesleyan and can’t wait to be back on the sidelines with coach Cooper.”

Just like Bezold, Travis Owsley also played two seasons for the Panthers. Coach Cooper stated that “you can’t find one member of the Kentucky Wesleyan or Owensboro community who doesn’t know Travis. He is enthusiastic, appreciative for everything, and did great as an assistant for Owensboro Catholic. Everyone who knows him has something good to say about him. Travis is a proud alum with a good basketball mind who will be a great mentor for our players.

The Owensboro native graduated in 2011 after playing in 62 contests with six starts. “I’m extremely excited to have the opportunity to coach and give back to my alma mater, the most historic Division II powerhouse in the nation,” said Owsley. “This is an absolute dream come true for me and I’m proud to be a part of Kentucky Wesleyan College.”

July 31, 2021 | 12:04 am

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