Where will they land?

Where in the AP?

Now that they have won the respect of the punditry (yesterday I heard Lunardi say that when the team barely lost to SMC without Yoeli, he decided they would be a second-weekend team), and only have two weeks left of the AP regular-season polling, where are they likely to land.

First, the team only has at most two games to impress any voters that they should have been ranked higher in the first place. The voter who forgot BYU this week is an example of such voters. https://kslsports.com/429227/byu-basketball-top-25-basketball-ap-voter-john-feinstein-forgot/

So not much movement likely on that front.

That leaves teams losing ahead of the Cougs, or teams below the Cougs impressing enough to leapfrog.

The leapfrog option is possible with the Power Conference Tourneys, but given BYU’s next game is a consensus tourney team in SMC, and likely a No. 1 seed Gonzaga, the leapfrog options are limited.

To move up, the Cougs need teams above them to lose: yesterday that includes 12 Villanova, 9 Maryland, though probably too far above the 17 line to immediately affect BYU, and 16 Penn State losing.

So probable rise of two maybe three. BYU 14 or 15 in the AP this week. Possibly another couple next week, so max out in the low teens.

Where in the Dance?

This week I heard an interview with an NCAA Committee bureaucrat boasting how well they nailed the sweet 16 last year. The NET ratings were 14 of 16 accurate with a 15th right outside in the upper teens and one wild card that was the real slipper last year.

BYU’s current NET rating (https://extra.ncaa.org/solutions/rpi/Stats%20Library/NET%20Team%20Sheets%20-%20Feb%2029,%202020.pdf, as of midnight Feb 29) has BYU a 14. So the committee is likely to be seeding them into the second weekend.

If they can win out till dance invite Sunday, they may well rise as two quad 1 victories will likely be positive. Yesterday KenPom had them up to a 12 until some later calculations came in and pushed them down to their current 13th.

So probably a 4 or 5 seed and possibly a 3 seed. A 3 seed would mean the committee considers them one of the 12 best teams in the land or that the no Sunday BYU rule had the unusual effect of bumping them up one. Ceteris paribus it usually pushes them down a seed.

Where in the annals of BYUbasketball history? All-time? Recent?

Impossible to answer fully because their body of work is incomplete.

If they lose their first game in the WCC and NCAA, then their body of work ended with a high of a nine-game WCC winning streak, a no loss Feb, a beating of No. 2 Gonzaga Bulldogs at home, and a 2 seed in the conference tourney. Not a bad resume, but disappointing given the rise in expectations.

What has fed the expectations? The resume, especially the overtime loss to the Utes and the one-point loss to SanFran. Meaning that with Yoeli and Gavin providing an extra big body, the team is living up to the LP3 expectations for the first time.

I expect the team to have two more losses. WCC Tournament final and either Elite Eight or Final Four. I simply do not see the combination of having their hunger slaked and their potential opponents having the talent and hunger to assuage them until late in the dance.

It’s really difficult to predict. SMC and Gonzaga are both really good teams and a loss isn’t going to shock anyone. I was hoping BYU would draw Pacific as they tied for 3rd with SMC, but no such luck. I expect a 6 or 7 unless they win the WCC, maybe a 5 if they make it to the finals. The NCAA tourney will most likely provide a team with equal footing. As a fan, I’m just ecstatic we will return to the tournament and everything else is just icing on the cake and having an optimistic attitude for next year

The key will be once again, will Haws show up both for offense and defense? Childs will show up. Then, will the role players come through? Will Nixon be ready and can play like he was before? Will Baxter start playing again like he did during the summer?

I think this team is 2-3 years ahead of what anyone expected given the state of BYU men’s bb when Rose “retired” and I am thrilled with the atmosphere around the program. Realistically, BYU has a good shot at beating St Mary’s and not a good shot of beating GU in the WCC championship. I would expect a 4 pt win vs StM and a 12 pt loss vs GU. Not bad for a team that was minus 3 of the current starters when Pope took over. Child’s stock is rising much faster than going to Europe as a pro which is what would have happened with Rose still on the bench! Program is in good hands.

Well, had he just stayed even with Rose his stock would have been where it’s at today. The worst thing players can do is skip a year or two and play in Europe. NBA teams don’t want American quitters.

This last week
6. Florida St. (24-5) lost to Clemson 70-69.
7. Duke (23-6) lost to Wake Forest 113-101; lost to Virginia 52-50.
9. Maryland (23-6) lost to No. 24 Michigan St 78-66.
10. Creighton (22-7) lost to St. Johns 91-71.
11. Louisville (24-6) lost to No. 6 Florida St. 82-67.
12. Villanova (22-7) lost to Providence 58-54.
15. Auburn (24-5) lost to No. 8 Kentucky 73-66.
16. Penn St. (21-8) lost to No. 18 Iowa 77-68.

Between BYU and the top five
only Seton Hall did not lose a game this week.

Not only is the bubble soft, but except for top five teams (Kansas, Gonzaga, SDSU, Dayton, Baylor) and maybe Kentucky, BYU with continued improvement, and a little luck in avoiding Yoeli’s quick fouls, would not be far from competitive.

just took a look at collegepolltracker and the most common vote for BYU last week was 14, so maybe with an extra couple of votes and the losses ahead in the next couple of weeks BYU could rise to a top 10 team.
Only really important at this stage if the committee agrees, but still a nice possible addition to a resume.

New rankings are out:
AP - #15
NET - #9