November 15, 2006John
Here’s some quotes from after BYU’s loss to #6 UCLA.
“We got disoriented in the second half with running our stuff,” second-year BYU coach Dave Rose said. “Their pressure late in the game didn’t allow us to get the ball where we wanted on the floor.”
“This was like an NCAA (tournament) game, except we were at home,” said coach Ben Howland, who is 4-0 in season openers at UCLA. “I have no doubt BYU will be in the tournament at the end of the year. I hope we don’t have to play them.”
“That’s a great team,” Young said. “We came to see where we were with the big teams, and we were with them.”
Read these 2 quotes and tell me if you believe what Jimmy Balderson and Dave Rose are saying about the game against UCLA tonight.
“It’s a historic building, it’s a historic team,” said senior guard Jimmy Balderson. “You dream about playing in games like this when you’re a kid. This is exactly how we want to start the year. We want to play the best because we want to be the best. We have high expectations and we want to play a good team.”[emphasis added]
“The first game out, I think we need to play someone that will challenge us and we can find out where we’re really at,” Rose said. “This will be a challenge. It’s a situation where we have a lot of work to do. We’ll be a lot better team in December than we are right now. But it will give us a pretty good idea of where we are.”[emphasis added]
Can you really believe that BYU wants to play the #6 team in the nation for their first game? Look at the following 2 scenarios.
Scenario 1 – BYU Loses
Losing is never good for a team. Sometimes teams make the most of it, but losing your first game of the season after working so hard all off season in my book will never be a good thing. In fact, losing the first game can be depressing for a team. Even against an opponent that is much better than you, a loss is still depressing. I would suggest that losing to a great time is even harder because it can totally kill your confidence. It can make a team feel like they are even worse than they really are. Either way, I dont’ think this is “exactly” how you want to start the season or that you “need” to play someone that will be a challenge for your first game.
Scenario 2 – BYU Wins
Of course this is the preferred scenario of the 2. I know I would enjoy this and I have to admit that it is possible that a win like this could give a team a lot of confidence for the rest of the season. However, it also sets a tough standard for the rest of the season. If we later go on to lose to a mediocre team like Utah (I had to throw that jab in there) then everyone will say what happened to the team that beat UCLA? A win against this team tonight will make us think that we have a team that’s going to go far in the NCAA tournament. However, being realistic that only sets us up for disappointment. Without a miracle, I think the best we can hope for this year is a win or two in the NCAA tournament. Anything more and I’ll be calling it a miracle and getting some more food storage.
Someone please help me understand why BYU fans will spend hours posting comments on message boards like CougarFan and CougarBoard and yet hardly anyone comments on my BYU sports blog. Quite honestly I don’t know why people aren’t as outspoken on blogs as they are on the message boards. I don’t know if people see it as a matter of respect because this is my website and not a forum where everyone is talking. Maybe people just absolutely agree with everything I say and so they have nothing to add or take away from what I’ve said. We know how mythical that is.
Please someone explain it to me!
I’m considering putting a big virtual sign at the bottom of my posts saying: “PLEASE COMMENT! I promise it won’t hurt you” Do people really need encouragement to comment on my blog? I’m sure that a lot of people that read my commentary don’t agree or can help point out errors in my thinking. In fact, I encourage people to do it. There are so many people out there that know more about BYU sports than I do and I value their feedback. In fact, I’m still open to having other people participate in this blog if someone’s interested. I know I enjoy having this as an outlet for me to talk about BYU sports. It’s my platform to say whatever I want. I just wish that more people would comment on what I say.
I don’t think I could heap enough praise on Jeff Judkins. I’m not just saying that because I’ve followed him since he was at Utah since he was my high school friend’s uncle. She always kept me informed. I’m saying he’s great because he’s done marvelous things with BYU women’s basketball. I think they’ve been successful and overachieved ever year that he’s been a part of BYU women’s basketball. He’s brought some fantastic wins and BYU’s win over Stanford is just one more example.
I’m not sure what Jeff Judkins does, but it works. Now he just needs to do one more thing for me. Make women’s basketball interesting enough for it to be on TV so I can watch it. I really enjoy watching women’s basketball. My sister instilled that in me, but honestly you can’t compare watching a women’s game with a couple hundred fans to a men’s game with a packed house. I’m not sure what can be done for the women’s game, but I feel bad that it still sits in obscurity compared to men’s athletics.
The past couple years I’ve read way too many articles completely denigrating the special teams for not playing well. People have hemmed and hawed about how special teams killed BYU and could have been the difference between a win and a loss.
Well, how come this year I haven’t read any articles about the special teams giving them credit for not choking? Well, we could write about the missed field goal at Boston College, but otherwise special teams has been solid this year. Unfortunately, no one really cares because BYU has been taking care of business and so special teams hasn’t been nearly as important this year. Sorry special teams, but you don’t get credit. You only get responsibility if something goes wrong.
On second thought BYU special teams did get some credit last week with the 2 nice kick returns. However, they still haven’t gotten nearly the praise they should be getting. Which for a BYU fan is a good thing.
Looking at the schedule ahead for BYU football it looks like we need a bunch of ranked teams to lose in order to help our ranking. We only have New Mexico and Utah ahead and I don’t see wins in both of those games helping BYU’s rankings in any way. All we can hope for in the rankings is for other ranked teams to lose so that BYU can move up. Of course, BYU does have to take care of business against New Mexico and Utah, but don’t expect BYU to move too much farther up the rankings with those 2 games.
Looking forward to the Las Vegas bowl, I don’t see a win against a low ranking Pac 10 team helping us either. If BYU football breaks the top 20 in the rankings, then I’ll be very happy.