Best, worst-case scenarios for BYU, Utah and USU basketball

Published: Friday, Oct. 25 2013 12:16 p.m. MDT

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BYU immediately grabs national attention after beating Stanford on the road during the ESPN Tip-Off Marathon. The Cougars win a thriller against Iowa State in the Marriott Center and roll past Texas in the College Basketball Experience Hall of Fame Classic to face Wichita State in the finals. However, BYU can't quite hang with the Shockers — the Cougars fall on a buzzer-beater.

Head coach Dave Rose uses this loss as a motivator and BYU destroys Utah State at EnergySolutions Arena.

Then against archrival Utah, Tyler Haws pulls a Jimmer and drops 42 points on the Utes. BYU fans start chanting, "You got Haws-ed!" ESPN and the rest of the national sports media pick up on it. Ute fans have to watch Haws' phenomenal game over and over on all the major networks.

The Cougars then head into Oregon and move to 3-0 against the Pac-12. BYU is an unstoppable force in the WCC as the Cougars finish 15-1, their lone loss coming at Gonzaga on Jan. 25. BYU wins the regular-season title and rolls through the WCC tournament to earn a No. 3 seed in the NCAA tournament.

Then, coach Rose and the Cougars roll to the Elite Eight before falling out of the tournament, and they are the only in-state team to go to the Big Dance.

The Pac-12 calls and tries to get BYU to replace Utah in basketball. Rose wins Coach of the Year and Haws narrowly misses out on Player of the Year, but he's a leading candidate headed in 2014-15.

*Note: These are not predictions — they’re exaggerated and fictional scenarios.
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Spanish Fork, UT

Most likely scenarios:
BYU closer to worst case, but good enough to go to the NCAA tournament but not far. Too many new parts playing inconsistently but Haws carries.

Utah midway in best-worst case. Maybe 7th in PAC12. Needs more seasoning but will breath hope into a fan based that's deserted them.

USU a bit better than worst case. Enough to make the tournament as one of the last teams in and first out. Needs better players with more seasoning.

Weber St. should be good and make the tournament.

sherlock holmes
Eastern, UT

The Utes worst-case scenario is a loss to one of those preseason teams they play. The opposing teams are all small colleges, and every game is at home.

Will T.
Salt Lake City, UT

Here's a prediction for ya'll: Utah will be the best team in state this year. Utes will beat BYU in the JMHC, and will finish 5th in the Pac-12. Cougars will be solid, but will lose 5 non-conference games (Stanford, Wich St, Iowa St, Utah, Oregon), and then will lose 4 conference games. They will need a couple wins in the WCC tournament to make the big dance, but will fall short for the second straight year.

Utah St will struggle with their transition into the MWC. They will finish 6th in the league, and will play in the CBI.

Those who are saying I'm crazy with the Utah prediction... go watch this team play before you judge. There's some real talent up on the hill, for the first time in a long time. Delon Wright will be all Pac-12 this year. He will flirt with a triple double multiple times this year. Loveridge, Taylor, Tucker, and Olsen are all improved from last year. Onwas is as athletic a wing as Utah has had. Ogbe has NBA potential. 2014-15 will be a HUGE year for Utah basketball.

Bookmark this post

Spanish Fork, UT

What is with people who say "Bookmark this post" or "write it down." Are you really that insecure. Just state your case...and for the most part you did. Preseason is all about hype so your guess is as good as mine.

What the Utes have going against them is too many parts are unproven and haven't played together. That's usually a formula for early season loses. If Coach K can keep them together and keep them working with each other, the Utes could do okay.

But, none of the teams in the state have enough firepower and cohesion to expect big things. Haws is as big as it gets from the state and he's pretty darn good. So, typically, the team with the best player usually gets the nod. But the other parts of BYU are either unproven (Mika and the other freshman center), streaky (Carlino) or having to work themselves into shape (KC).

And don't mark it, write it or anything else. Who really cares? It's a game that means nothing but entertainment.

West Point , UT

Will T:
I love your enthusiasm, and who knows maybe your future predictions come true. This year you're way off though. I won't argue with you, I'll let your Utes losses speak for themselves this year. BYU is the best team in the state until someone proves otherwise...and I'm talking to USU & weber state...the 2nd & 3rd best teams in the state. Sorry not worried about Utah until they give me a reason to be.

Veritas Aequitas
Fruit Heights, UT

Yep, that was fun.

BYU and USU have a shot at the dance. Utah, after a great preseason, will finish in the PAC with a losing record.

How much fun is that?

Go Utes, but I would feel better with Tommy Connor leading the Utes.

Two of the three teams have great head coaches.

Santa Monica, CA

Will--love your enthusiasm buddy, but I'm electing to not bookmark your post. It'll just have me on pins and needles all season.

OC Fan
Orange County, CA


I'm not marking anything down, bookmarking anything, or even stating my case - I'm just going to sleep.

See you in the AM - and to honor your excellent post I'm not even going to set my alarm.

Frisco, TX

Most likely scenarios - plus or minus a win or two.

BYU - 25 wins.
Utah State - 20 wins.
Utah - 15 wins.

BYU has an incredible 1, 2, 3 punch; but doesn't have the front court firepower for a special season.

USU will be solid, but Broncos, Lobos, Rebels and Aztecs look better this year.

Utah will get excited against a weak non-conference, but will struggle to get more than a few wins in the PAC. Definitely more talented, but this is the first rebuild year in Krystowiak's tenure. Look for Utes to be improved next year.

Highland, UT

@will t

LOL! Thanks for the belly laugh, that was some good stuff. Nothing like reading a utah "fan" declaring a program that hasn't had a winning season in half a decade, has lost to BYU 7 straight times and 11 out of 12, as the best team in the state.

Then declaring some freshman that has never played in anything more than an intra team scrimmage as having "NBA potential", LOL, and other deluded stuff. You just can't make this stuff up, except that you actually did.

Sure I'll bookmark your post, this one will definately be brought up in the future.


Real Bass
Idaho Falls, ID

Stopped reading after the first senerio. That's the only realistic choice. Utah can't compete in a church league and the ags will be good but will not compete in the better than pac MWC .

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