Keys to the Santa Clara Loss

1 Turnovers.
BYU shot the ball well enough to win a 43%. We hit 36% of our threes, and 17-20 from FTs. Those stats say BYU played well enough to win but that Turnover bug just is never going to change with this group.

2 Rudi Williams was our best player out there tonight, 24 points and only 2 turnovers.

3 Curious George played his disappearing act. Hate to keep picking on him but he is no ball handler and in ultra chippy games like this, you have to be able to do more than stand in a spot and shoot.

4 really, we get the NOSE reffing when the fouling is OUT OF CONTROL. The bald ref was sooo inconsistent all game. Saunders got cross blocked on the baseline, no call???
SO glad we are moving to the Big 12 and we can leave these crappy gyms, crappy ref jobs.

5 Atiki, you have been playing this game for 2 years now and you still don’t know to keep the ball high. All three of your TOs, were from bringing the ball down where they can slap at it. UGH

6 My man Johnson, 5 TOs, really bad. but you hustled and hit some big 3s

7 Thought it was a mistake to play Waterman over Saunders. Saunders will defend your kneecaps off, Waterman just wants to look good out there.

8 Our press was so bad, Stewart, Petro would just dribble through 2 BYU defenders and get an open dunk.

9 BYU crawls back into the game with a minute left and we just can create a shot, just bad decisions.

10 Slow starts and poor endings. speaks to the lack of playmakers on this team.

11 before the game, I said that the problem with SC is that they can really score and BYU may not be able to keep up with their fire powers. Justice and Steward just absolutely roasted us. If Johnson had not be guarding Podzermski, he’d of had 30, these guys are elite scorers.

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I counted 5 or 6 missed basically layups as well. Even with all this, the turnovers still are head-scratching. The Robinson sling-the-ball ten rows back into the crowd is mind-boggling. But, the consistent dribbling turnovers tells me their heads and eyes are down and they simply aren’t ball handlers. It’s like being the Washington Generals against the Globe Trotters. Protect the ball isn’t in their language. But, I’ll say it over and over, I hate the weave offense. Unless you are playing against a team who doesn’t try to steal the ball (Washington Generals) then it only works if you can handle the dribble and have great eye vision of the court. We don’t have either.

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The weave is designed to rub guys off. We are so stinkin scared of getting picked, we end up 20 further out. We really need better coaching on passing and using pics to get closer, not further.

Great write-ups.

KSL interviewed Spencer and Coach Pope after the game. Spencer was asked about the early turnovers. He said the turnovers came in a not expected way. He said it was the second or third guy along swiping that got them. He said they were able to adjust but it took them a little bit of time.

Pope said the blame was on him for not preparing the guys adequately. He said Santa Clara is a very physical team and he didn’t prepare them enough for their physicality which was also part of the early turnover equation. He said San Francisco and St Mary’s are carbon copies of Santa Clara so they have to get their act together if they’re going to survive the next two games.

Pope was asked about George’s two game slump of 0 for 11 shooting. George is experiencing something new this year. In previous years he might have been the number five or six guy opposing teams focused on. Now he is number two or number three. So he is having to learn how to adjust to extra attention.

I was glad to see that Stewart got some minutes. Unfortunate that his first play was a turnover. However, it seemed like he was the spark to overcome a deficit and push us back in later in the game. If he doesn’t get more time this year I suspect he is transfer portal material.

Well, Johnson has prepared for years on pressure like that. So have the other players. It’s called seeing the court and not watching the ball while dribbling. Good grief.

I like Stewart a lot, very athletic but Saunders can defend bigger guys and has a better shot, I hope he sticks around…

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Where do I start? Last night I texted my best friend who is in the program and he responded with “Turnovers” and a shaking my head emoji…everyone knows it, no one can stop it, and it’s no better after 22 games than it was after 10 games. It is what it is.

Responding to a few of your points:

George: Wow. Just wow.
The Nose: EVERY game he works is problematic. His dislike for BYU aside, his arrogance is just suffocating. And the body block on Saunders was a pretty unbelievable non-call. That one was just terrible and I hope the official apologized. When I was a paid football HC there were MANY times a good official would apologize to me during or after the game for an obvious bad or no call…only made me respect the official more when that happened.

I like Saunders more and more all the time. He gets regularly SCREWED and I mean ABUSED by the officials in the Rec League. He gets hit A LOT in the key but gets no calls since he’s the new kid. Supremely athletic. I see him being a star for BYU in the next couple years.

Waterman: I was wrong. Period. Dead wrong. He was GREAT the second half of last year and I thought he would be a very solid player for BYU, but he is close to a zero out there.

SJ gets a pass from me on this one. Normally so solid with the ball.

Hall, like Saunders, is getting better all the time. Love to see him being more assertive on offense.

Like the GU game, the better team won. This BYU team is just simply not very good. Not bad–just not very good. I thought we would lose 7 or 8 in conference and that’s about where it looks like we will finish.


My opinion with the turnovers is the vision of the players is limited. They don’t see the floor well enough to know when they are too close to another defender. And, their triple threat position is poor. Johnson hangs the ball out in front which is easy to knock away. What I can’t understand is Robinson’s pass to the crowd about 10 seats up. What’s that all about?

I have to be honest, 15 in the 1st half, 4 in the 2nd half! The 2nd half was even more chippy/physical than the 1st half.

If I were a stats man (you know I am) I would say, this is a lack of maturity, Focus and whatever words explain what I am seeing. Just how many games has BYU given to lesser teams because of turnovers? 5 or 6?

We have drills for this sort of thing.

The start of games have been a problem for years. Protect the ball means proper ball handling when facing defenders, dribbling the ball and passing. It’s like we think the other team is going to play along with our offense without trying to steal the ball. Watch Johnson hang the ball out in front for the defender to knock it free. They all have slow crossover dribbles. Better screens and more passing. Just pay attention where the defenders are. See the court.