Quantcast

BYU basketball: ESPN's Andy Katz has BYU among the rising teams in college basketball

Published: Sunday, July 5 2015 1:53 p.m. MDT

BYU's Tyler Haws is stopped by Weber State's Jordan Richardson as BYU and Weber State play Friday, Nov. 8, 2013 in the Marriott Center in Provo.  (Scott G Winterton, Deseret News) BYU's Tyler Haws is stopped by Weber State's Jordan Richardson as BYU and Weber State play Friday, Nov. 8, 2013 in the Marriott Center in Provo. (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!"

Brigham Young Cougars' Matt Carlino (2) drives around the defense of Colorado Mesa's Michael Melillo (32) during a game at the Marriott Center on Saturday, November 16, 2013. (Matt Gade, Deseret News) Brigham Young Cougars' Matt Carlino (2) drives around the defense of Colorado Mesa's Michael Melillo (32) during a game at the Marriott Center on Saturday, November 16, 2013. (Matt Gade, Deseret News)

This week, BYU got some more love as it picked up six votes to come in at No. 29 during ESPN's week 3 power rankings. Katz voted the Cougars No. 20.

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.

Collinsworth, Kyle 02MP5506

BYU's Kyle Collinsworth (5) scores in BYU's win over Mount St. Mary's. 

BYU-108
MSM-76

13-14mBKB vs Mount St. Mary's

November 15, 2013

Photo by BYU

Copyright BYU Photo 2013
All Rights Reserved
photo@byu.edu    photo.byu.edu (BYU, ) Collinsworth, Kyle 02MP5506 BYU's Kyle Collinsworth (5) scores in BYU's win over Mount St. Mary's. BYU-108 MSM-76 13-14mBKB vs Mount St. Mary's November 15, 2013 Photo by BYU Copyright BYU Photo 2013 All Rights Reserved photo@byu.edu photo.byu.edu (BYU, )

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: justingiles@deseretnews.com

Copyright 2015, Deseret News Publishing Company