Support Local Journalism

Over the past two weeks or so, the Utah State women’s basketball program has lost a key contributor, but has also gained a potential difference maker.

Last weekend, Southern Utah University forward Jessica Chatman announced on Twitter she would be spending her final season of eligibility at USU. Chatman spent her freshman season at BYU before transferring to SUU.

“I’ve decided to grad transfer to utah state for my last year of basketball + finish my masters,” Chatman posted on Twitter. “grateful to coach @Kayla_Ard and @USUWBasketball for the opportunity! #geauxaggies.”

A week before Chatman declared her decision, the Twitter account “NCAA WBB Transfer List” posted that USU sophomore guard Steph Gorman had entered the transfer portal. Gorman’s name has since been removed from USU’s online roster at utahstateaggies.com.

Gorman started all 30 games she played in as a sophomore for the Aggies, who finished the 2019-20 campaign with a 8-23 record, including a 2-16 mark in Mountain West play. Gorman led Utah State in assists (2.8 per game), steals (59) and 3-point baskets (68) and also ranked third on the squad in scoring (10.7 points per game).

The native Australian scored in double figures in 17 contests and also chipped in with 3.7 rebounds an outing. The 6-foot guard came up big in USU’s upset victory over San Diego State in the opening round of the Mountain West Tournament as she contributed with 17 points, seven assists and five rebounds.

As a freshman, Gorman made 20 starts and appeared in USU’s other 12 games. She averaged 6.8 ppg, 2.2 rpg and 2.1 apg, and paced the Aggies with 52 treys.

Gorman is the fifth Australian to leave the program over the past four seasons, joining Funda Nakkasoglu, Eliza West, Olivia West and Shannon Dufficy.

In Chatman, the Aggies will be obtaining the services of an athlete who started in 37 games during her two seasons at SUU. As a redshirt junior, the 6-0 forward played in all 31 games and made 24 starts for the Thunderbirds, who went 18-13, including 11-9 in Big Sky Conference play. The Thunderbirds were eliminated in the quarterfinals of the Big Sky Tournament by Idaho State.

No. 24 averaged 6.4 ppg and 4.9 rpg this past season for Southern Utah. Chatman, who knocked down 39.6 percent of her field goal attempts, ranked third on the team in rebounding and sixth in scoring. She posted double-doubles against Sacramento State and Idaho, and near double-doubles against Cal State Fullerton (15 points, nine rebounds) and Eastern Washington (11 points, nine boards).

As a redshirt sophomore, Chatman, an academic all-conference selection, appeared in 23 contests and chipped in with 6.9 points and 4.2 rebounds an outing. SUU upset BYU that season.

During her lone year in Provo, Chatman, a true freshman at the time, saw limited playing time in 19 contests and averaged 0.6 ppg and 0.4 rpg. Chatman was a two-time first-team all-state selection at Union (Washington) High School and averaged a double-double (16.0 points, 10.5 rebounds) as a senior.

Chatman’s older brother, Jordan, played two seasons at BYU before transferring to Boston College as a graduate transfer. He scored 12-plus points per game for the Eagles as a junior and senior, and currently plays professionally in Romania.

Chatman’s father, Jeff, was a standout forward for BYU in the mid-1980s. Jeff Chatman, a three-year starter for the Cougars, averaged 19.6 points and 7.6 rebounds an outing en route to earning honorable mention All-America accolades as a senior.

Jason Turner is a sports reporter for The Herald Journal. He can be reached at jturner@hjnews.com or 435-792-7237.

Please be aware that Cache Valley Publishing does not endorse, and is not responsible for alleged employment offers in the comments.