BYU basketball: ESPN's Andy Katz has BYU among the rising teams in college basketball
Scott G Winterton, Deseret News
Just two weeks into the college basketball season, some teams are already making a big splash.
Michigan State is now the No. 1 team in the nation after beating then-No. 1 Kentucky 78-74.
Iowa State pulled off one of the biggest upsets in the young season after beating then-No. 7 Michigan 77-70.
But the biggest upset of all came when the Belmont Bruins beat the North Carolina Tar Heels 83-80 in Chapel Hill.
While BYU hasn't pulled off a major upset, it has been polishing its resume with an undefeated 4-0 record, including an impressive 112-103 road victory over Stanford as part of ESPN's Tipoff Marathon.
After that game, ESPN college basketball analyst Andy Katz tweeted about BYU's impressive performance. Seth Greenberg, who was calling the game broadcast on ESPN2, talked about BYU's big win, saying, "The Cougars are for real!"
After two weeks of college basketball, which teams are making the biggest noise?
"For me, it's Iowa State," ESPN analyst Dana O'Neil said. "The Cyclones are fairly young but with a healthy Melvin Ejim, they proved against Michigan that they are a team to keep an eye on. Fred Hoiberg has done a terrific job rejuvenating the program in Ames and it looks as though he's not finished yet."
Katz went a different direction, saying, "Iowa State is the easy choice. But I'll offer up BYU. The Cougars were such an entertaining watch against Stanford that they made a strong enough case to be included. This team could end up being one of the top scoring teams in the country."
It just so happens these two teams play each other Wednesday night. BYU and Iowa State also played each other last year, when the Cyclones easily took care of business, winning 83-62.
While BYU has made some noise early in the season, it still has a tough road ahead. BYU head coach Dave Rose talked about this when he spoke with Greenberg and Katz this week on ESPNU's basketball podcast.
“Scheduling is the hardest thing we do," Rose said. "What you want to do is challenge each team, but you don’t want to get them in a position where they can’t handle it.
“You don’t want to over-schedule, but you don’t want to under-schedule, either, because that leaves your team a little bit short."
Iowa State is (5-0) all-time against BYU and will look to keep that streak going Wednesday night. The Cyclones have never played in the Marriott Center, where the Cougars are 120-11 during the Rose era.
A win here for either team is shaping up to be vital come March, as teams across the nation battle it out for top seeds come NCAA tournament time, the Cougars and Cyclones included.
Justin Giles is a recent graduate with a bachelor's degree in communications with an emphasis in journalism and sports communication. Twitter: Justingiles22 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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