BYU defeats SDSU

BYU has won two games against teams that were in the Dance last year and likely again this year. Obviously, 3 point shooting must improve. But, rebounding and free throw shooting has been excellent. The aggressive play of BYU is getting these wins. And, the crowd at the Marriott Center helps a lot. See what happens in away games.

Yeah, good win.

But you know what is more interesting? I was checking out the basketball roster and noticed that BYU has 4 brand new freshman guards (and one sophomore guard) between 6’1" and 6’3" for a total of 5 small players from the 17 man roster that are from high schools within a 40 mile distance of the BYU campus.

I love Pope but I thought the idea was to recruit outside that footprint somewhat. How do fans/people expect BYU to improve significantly, especially when they are headed to the Big 12 very soon, on the level of talent they currently have? None of these guys is making an impact so is the idea to have the local HS kids on the BYU team to cheer the transfers on?

Is the move to the Big 12 going to improve this ongoing situation or not?

With Barcello and the new transfer, none of them are going to play much on a 16 man roster. But, they are there for the team to push the ones playing a head of them. I would think next year Pope would be looking for transfers. I’m surprised the 4star is going on a mission first seeing he’s NBA material :joy:

I watched those bench warmers in the exhibition games. They can shoot and aren’t bad. If our 3 point shooting doesn’t pick up, I wouldn’t be surprised to see them get some time.

Johnson can play. He is good off the bench and I think next year he will play more. But, our bigs have lots of potential. That block of Fousse could have only been done by someone 6’6” with a wingspan of 7’2”. To get close enough to the player without fouling and his arm long enough to not get stuffed by the basket was insane. He reminded me of Wes Unseld being a center at 6’6”.

Two of the five (Dowdell and Brown) are walk ons. The question is do Nate Hansen and Hunter Erickson have a long future at BYU. I think one or both could transfer.

I believe the move to the Big 12 has already improved the recruiting. Landing a top 30 HS player whose family had U of U loyalties would seem to indicate that. Chandler is from Farmington, Utah which is outside the 40 mile radius but not by much. I suspect that Chandler would be committed to the Utes if not for the Big 12 invite.

I don’t see the problem with 5 Utah kids who won’t play much on a 16 man roster. Of the nine guys who are in the rotation right now most of them aren’t from Happy Valley. Several aren’t scholarship players and all are expendable. Sorry to sound so cold but a 16 man roster is pretty bloated. I remember many BYU teams with only 12 on the roster. Realistically only about 9 guys are going to play a lot of minutes. The way things are now with it so easy to transfer some of those guys are going to leave. It is the way of college basketball now days. Pope is doing very recruiting the transfer portal so I can’t complain.

Traore and Lohner played HS ball within the 40 mile radius but both escape the stigma of being local recruits because Lohner played 2 years at Flower Mound, Texas and was born in Dallas and Traore was born in Africa.

yeah, the real question is: Where are our starters from?
Barcello- Az transfer
Lucas-Minn transfer
Lohner- Tx
George- Africa
Traore- Africa

If the 3 point shooting doesn’t improve it won’t matter. So far, the other teams aren’t very good from distant either.

Thanks for the replies and perspective. I am feeling like it is a result of the “kid who always dreamed of playing basketball at BYU” thing and they are just happy to be on the team. If they push the core group of players in practice and make them work hard then that is a good thing. Team players are always a plus.

Wasatch Academy is located in farm country down by Ephraim Utah. This High School does not even play the Utah HS’s. They travel around the country playing ranked teams, and like Bishop Gorman High, in Las Vegas…they are a farm team for D1 colleges. Every single kid that plays there gets offers to play D1 ball.

How ‘Fouss’ Traore became the 3rd starter from No. 2 Wasatch Academy to sign with BYU basketball in one year |

Big credit also goes to Pope, who famously made a recruiting trip to Mali while recruiting Sissoko but kept a scholarship open for Traoré as he followed his recruiting. That scholarship paid off Thursday in the 6-foot-7 big man’s pledge to BYU.
Sissoko ended up signing at Kansas (I believe). Pope trusted the coach from Wasatch Academy when he said that Foos was a good and to recruit them both.

Let me comment on a couple of the Utah prep players:

Erickson–he was a major recruit. Committed to BYU pretty early and was a firm “mission first” kid, which turned off several schools. But he was rated 88 by 247 Sports, 50th best SG in the USA, and 2nd best player in Utah. He was a legit recruit and is a high level athlete and Pope has big plans for Erickson when AB and Te’jon move on.

Trey Stewart: another 6’2" guard. Lightly recruited–several offers but only “major” one other than BYU was USU. First team all state with a 40" vertical. I was at the SDSU game early and Erickson and Stewart were putting on quite the trick dunk show just for fun. Both kids can handle the ball and both can play WAY over the rim. I honestly think this kid can be a player for BYU.

But Jim, I’m with you on some of the others–they seem to be just “roster fillers.”

I was at the SDSU game and came away very impressed. SDSU’s D is like playing against a tornado–bodies, arms, hands, feet everywhere, coming from every direction. That team will win a lot of games. It really showed me a lot about BYU’s resilience and watching live I was able to see a lot more of the off the ball stuff that you miss on TV. Thoughts:

Traore: wow. The strength and athleticism are off the charts. He got back picked twice on the baseline in the first half, showing his inexperience. But guess what? Didn’t happen again. Good learner. He also became our first option for low post inside-out play–I posted last week that I was hoping to see exactly that. Pope used Traore and Lohner exclusively in that role. Fouss scored on a couple really nice post ups—just as he had against Cleveland State. Traore is alreay a massive fan favorite and I think will be a pretty dominant player for us.

Lohner: Couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn in that game, but played big minutes because he could match the SDSU bigs in athleticism. Of course he made one of the key plays late when he elevated WAY WAY UP to high point a rebound right over a SDSU guy who had him blocked out, and the resulting putback was a game clincher. Lohner is another star in the making.

Seneca: 100% increase in confidence from game one to game 2. Seneca and Gideon also guarded SDSU’s best guy and completely frustrated him. Between them in over 30 minutes on the guy they allowed him to score only 4 (he finished with 8 including a couple baskets against Johnson, who only played a couple minutes and looked overmatched). Seneca did it all at both ends and was having a great time out there with his teammates.

Te’jon: terrible shooting, but missed about 4 contested shots at the rim after beating his guy off the dribble. Two were put back in by BYU guys. Te’jon is strong on the dribble and we will see more of him taking his guy like that. And he MANNED UP making those 4 crucial FTs (When SDSU had to foul, SDSU doubled AB on the inbounds and forced us to inbound to Te’jon).

AB: No words for how clutch that kid is. What a privilege to watch him play another year.

Roster fills are important. I had them on my teams I coached. They are very much needed. They usually didn’t hang around more than a couple of season in Frosh-Soph and JVs. But, that was okay and they were happy to just be a part of the team and get in the yearbook pictures.

Tom, Just got done watching the SDSU game.

I saw several Big differences from game one to game two:

Seneca Knight had a terrible 1st game, he was EVERYWHERE in the SDSU game. Scrappy, long and smart, Knight really bothered SDSU’s Bradley (now I know why Johnson couldn’t get floor time after his breat 1st game with Clev.) Knight just knocked knees with anyone he defended and blocked a few along the way. Very Impressed.

Lucas may have missed some bunnies but he broke SDSU’s D down anytime he wanted and THAT Wins Games!

Foos can’t be kept off the floor, he is smart, stupid timing, we get 4 years of this kid and he will be a Big 12 legend. Baxter was very efficient with his time on the floor but Foos is everywhere. What a great problem to have.

Lohner is finally the threat we knew he would become! His pic and dunks will give defenses frightmares. The 3s will fall and then it becomes hard to keep him at BYU.

Barcello is NBA ready, just a height thing at this point. So so happy he stayed. He has won 2 games so far, he will have won a dozen by the end of this season.

BYU has never defended this well, not in my lifetime. We still need one more big time scorer, Is it Lohner or is it Foos? Or is it by committee, Some Knell, Baxter, Johnson, Knight kind of thing? I do think that Seneca will get starter minutes over George going forward or am I jumping the gun.

BYU is going to beat Oregon or give them their first big test.

George is much better this year. Although, he has some brain fart moments. We will wear teams down and have the advantage at the end of games.
Wait until Atiki figures his game out and Baxter can play more.

Oregon has lots of tall guys but their bigs haven’t done much, and their guards want the shots, so I don’t fear their inside game. They start 3 guards, a beanpole and a 6’8” guy. Defend the perimeter=BYU wins the game. Let them hit 3s and the Ducks take it. No shame if we lose this one, and it won’t keep us out of the dance. But If we win this one we will have a REALLY good dancing resume.