In order to get to a #1 ranking in all the land, you have to do a number of thing right. Above all, you have to win on the road. Gonzaga has beat Florida, Iowa State, Zona, and Tennessee on the road…Tenn. just beat Kentucky. This may well be Coach Few’s best team. They are sound in every area of the game. I want to discuss Offense/Defense ratings for just a moment to prove a point…
Ken Pomeroy back in Nov had BYU with a 112 O/96 D rating. Gonzaga 116 O/96 D rating. fairly close, right?
Jan 31/2017, BYU’s rating is 107.8 O/98.5 D while Gonzaga is 121 O/88 D
in other words BYU’s offensive rating is worse today then it was back in Nov while our defensive rating has worsened. Gonzaga’s offensive rating has steadily improved to the point that they are ranked #7 in the entire land while ranked #3 on defense out of 350 D1 programs.
SMC, top 10 offense, top 50 defense…BYU ranks 107 in offense, 72 in defense.
BYU’s dynamics would certainly be different if Bryant had been healthy rather than coming in raw in Dec. like he did. The lose of Davis is also a big factor in BYU’s demise.
If I were Coach Few, I would focus on getting Mika/Childs in foul trouble=blow out. BYU has to defend the middle to have a chance. The fact that GU is excellent at penetrating and BYU’s history of guards, well, not guarding does not look good for BYU’s chances. Remember…GU drives to dish, not to score. Its the 2nd and 3rd option that kills you, not the driver. I have written about this for years. It is a Few trait.
On defense, GU has three 7 footers, That does not bode will for Mika, just leaning on him on both D/O takes it out of you. Childs is not a big scorer so BYU’s only chance is to have an out of body night from 3 land.
On offense, GU has Wash. transfer PG Nigel Williams-Gross #5, Jr and ranked #6 nationally…he will drive and dish to wide open Josh Perkins or Jorden Mathews, who knock down 3s at a 40% plus rate, Missouri transfer, Forward Johnathan Williams knocks down 3s at a 46% rate. This guys are all Jr.s or Sr. s.
Our young team will be as lost as they were at SMC. Vegas has the game 88-74, and a 91% chance of BYU losing, In all my years of watching numbers, I have never seen such a disparity for a BYU team playing at home.