Mory Bamba is the newest recruit to commit to play for BYU football. He announced his commitment Friday, as reported on Twitter:
— Mory Bamba (@morybamba3_) June 24, 2022
Bamba is a 6-foot-3 190-pound cornerback that is coming to BYU as a JUCO transfer from Tyler Junior College in Tyler, Texas. However, Mamba’s road to Provo didn’t start in Texas, it started way back in 2018 when he was playing football and running track at Menomonee Falls high school in Wisconsin (Athletic.net).
Going into his senior year he was just 5-foot-11 and 130 pounds. Too small to be recruited for football he focused on track and was a top hurdler and triple jumper at Menomonee.
With no D1 football or track and field offers out of high school, he decided to attend DIII University of Wisconsin-Osk Kosh (Class of 2019) where he competed on the track team (TFRRS.org).
After his freshman season (and putting on a little weight) he transferred to ASA College (Miami, Florida) to try his hand at football as a walk-on. He made the team and 2021 he managed 14 tackles, six pass breakups and an interception as a defensive back (ASA profile).
With that success he transferred this spring to Tyler Junior College in Texas where he again made the team as a walk-on. In March he clocked at 4.34 forty-yard dash at a Tyler College conditioning camp and his recruitment started to heat up.
Around that same time Tyler Junior College hired former BYU defensive back Tanner Jacobson as its new head coach.
Coach Jacobson connected Bamba with BYU an official visit was set.
“Before heading in my visit my JC Coach Tanner Jacobson gave me a heads up on the type of program BYU is and when I went, it was everything he said it would be. So when it came down to make my decision, it was a no brainer.”
Bamba visited BYU and Utah State, receiving offers from both schools.
He was also receiving recruiting interest from Auburn, Boise State, Colorado, Jackson State, Mizzou, UNLV, Utah, Washington State, and several smaller schools. But that didn’t matter.
“I didn’t bother to entertain those schools because I kind of knew that BYU was going to be the perfect fit for me, especially after coach Jacobson had nothing but good to say about BYU. So I was just waiting to take the visit and see if it was all true—and it turned out to be, so I committed on my visit.”
When I asked him what made BYU stand out he immediately talked about the coaches.
“Coach Kalani Sitake is just an electric person and most importantly a family man. With a guy like that, I know he truly cares about each player in his locker room on and off the field. On top of that I’ll be coached by Jernaro Gilford who was a former BYU player. On my visit, after meeting with Coach Gilford and learning more about his coaching style, it all just clicked and I told myself this is something I can get use to for the next few years at BYU.”
He was also impressed with what BYU is doing with NIL through their Built 4 Life Program.
“BYU isn’t just a 2-3 year decision. It is a 10-20 year decision with the academic and connections I will be making there.”
It has been a long and hard road thus far, but Bamba’s single mother has been his “why” and has helped him be patient in overcoming mental barriers he has faced as he has grown and developed as a man and as a student-athlete.
And he has grown. No longer the undersized and under-utilized athlete, Bamba now stands 6-foot-3 and 190 pounds and he has maintained his track speed.
While his mother is his inspiration, he also notes that Muhammed Ali and Kobe Bryant are two athletes he admires because of their work ethic and approach to life and sport. His favorite books include personal development best-sellers “Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable” and “The Power of Habit.”
Bamba is hopeful that his own hard work will get him into the rotation at BYU.
With all that he has been through to get to Provo it is likely to do just that.
Bamba has three years of eligibility remaining and will provide some important depth in the secondary as he enrolls in time to play for the Cougs in the 2022 season.