In his five-year tenure at USF, Jamaree Bouyea finished first in all-time games played, third in steals, third in assists, sixth in three-pointers made, and fifth in points scored — and he hasn’t taken his foot off the gas. In July, Bouyea signed an Exhibit 10 contract with the Miami Heat, who made it to the Eastern Conference Finals last season and made an NBA Finals appearance in 2020. His contract will allow him to compete for a roster spot with the main team, while still maintaining eligibility to play for their G-League affiliate team, the Sioux Falls Skyforce, according to the Miami Heat.
After the 2021 March Madness tournament, Bouyea had 14 NBA workouts and ultimately ended up with Miami. “After the draft, [Miami] was the first team I went to… I know Miami has a great track record with players that are undrafted and unsung heroes so that was definitely the first spot I wanted to go to,” he said.
According to ESPN, four of the Heat’s top five players last season were undrafted players. In a statement to the Foghorn, Heat team captain Udonis Haslem, who has played 19 seasons in the NBA, spoke highly of Bouyea. “He came to the right place for underdogs. We value the have-nots. Here he’ll have a legit chance to showcase his talents and make an NBA roster. Just check our resume.”
In two games in the Las Vegas Summer League, Bouyea averaged 8.5 points, 4 rebounds, 3 assists, and 1.5 steals in 22 minutes of play per game. Bouyea’s aggressive defense and offensive poise shined during games.
Bouyea and fellow Don, Frankie Ferrari, matched up against each other at the California Summer League at Chase Center. Bouyea and Ferrari played together for two seasons from 2017-2019 and came full circle when they matched up professionally in the Sacramento Kings vs. Miami Heat game. “That’s my brother, man, so to be able to share the court, in the Warriors arena, with all our friends and family there, was something special,” Bouyea said. “It’s a moment I’ll have in my life forever and I have that picture of us [playing] together on the wall in my house, it’s something very special.”
As the 6-foot-2-inch point guard enters his rookie year, he’s applying much of what he’s gained on the Hilltop. “Coming into USF as a freshman no one knew who I was, I didn’t play much, and I had to work my way up,” he said. “I was getting better and improving every year and that’s what I’m trying to do in Miami. I just want to make my way up the ladder and keep improving and have a lasting career in the NBA.”
With training camp approaching, Bouyea is looking to put his best foot forward and fit into whatever role the team needs him in. “As time goes on, I want to be in the NBA for a very long time and I’m just really trying to make this roster right now,” he said.
Bouyea expressed the love and gratitude he has for the fans on the Hilltop. “Those are the best fans I’ve seen at USF in a long time. Seeing War Memorial Gym sell out games again is very special and I’m very appreciative [of the fans],” he said. “They should do the same for this upcoming season, we got a good team and they’re going to make it back to the tournament.”
The Miami Heat start their training camp on Sept. 27 in the Bahamas. Final roster cuts for the NBA regular season are due Oct. 17.