One year later, former Snow All-American lineman Isaiah Jatta lands at BYU

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PROVO — Immediately following the conclusion of spring practices, BYU offensive coordinator Aaron Roderick admitted that the Cougars would look to the transfer portal for capable additions along the offensive line.

"We're a little bit low at O-line right now. We like the guys were have, we're just down, numbers-wise," he said. "If we can find an O-lineman or two, we will."

Following the addition of Austin Leausa, the 6-foot-5 addition from Southern Utah, the Cougars added another with power conference experience this week. But the newest lineman is plenty familiar with BYU, as well.

A little over a year ago, the Cougars recruited Isaiah Jatta after an All-American career in Ephraim. But the 6-foot-6, 300-pound offensive tackle signed with Coach Prime himself, Deion Sanders, and Colorado before the former No. 9 junior college transfer by 247Sports appeared in 11 games for the Buffaloes in 2023 with one start.

When the big man from San Diego opted for the transfer portal following the season, BYU was — in many ways — already on his list. The prior relationship was there, as was familiarity with a school 74 miles from his junior college days.

He committed Monday afternoon.

"Jatta was great for us," Snow College head coach Zac Erekson told of his former All-American tackle. "He will fit in great in Provo and BYU. He's a great kid with a lot of upside."

Had the Cougars begun recruiting Jatta earlier, they may have landed him on the first go-around, opined Erekson, the former Springville High star who played at then-Dixie State and BYU. By the time he received an offer, though, he had already received interest from South Carolina, Auburn, Oklahoma State, Illinois and Syracuse.

Jatta eventually committed to the Buffs, who are joining BYU in the Big 12 beginning this summer. A year since parting ways in recruitment, his path has led him to Provo with one season of eligibility remaining after his stop at Colorado, two seasons at Snow, and a redshirt campaign in 2020.

He joins a transfer portal group that includes Leausa and quarterback McCae Hillstead, to say nothing of the midyear transfers like former Baylor quarterback Gerry Bohanon.

Jatta played tackle at Colorado, but was used at both guard and tackle at Snow. He also played on both sides of center, making him a versatile trench technician to fill in alongside returning starters Connor Pay, Caleb Etienne, Brayden Keim and Weylin Lapuaho, among others.

"He could be a really great get for BYU," Erekson said. "I'm glad he is back in Utah."

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