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Gonzaga's loss sets up even more intrigue in WCC

Published: Saturday, Feb. 18 2012 9:21 p.m. MST

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ManInTheMiddle
SANDY, UT

The WCC is a joke. Dave Rose and the Cougars deserve MUCH MUCH BETTER. Coach has put together another great squad that has huge upside in the next few years. We need to find him a much better conference. We are lying to ourselves if we think the WCC is worthy of our talent. It's not even one of the 10 best conferences in the NCAA. Perhaps the Big 12 would take us for basketball only???? I don't know the solution but at least I'm willing to be honest and admit that BYU participating in the WCC is a big problem.

Rational
Salt Lake City, UT

ManInTheMiddle, and whatever the rest of your pseudonyms are, what the WCC lacks in depth (and that it does), it makes up in quality at the top.

If, for example, the WCC and the PAC were to merge, 3 of the top 4 teams would be WCC teams.

If the WCC and MWC were to merge, the WCC would have 3 of the top 5 teams.

If all three conferences merged, the WCC would have 3 of the top 6 teams.

Of course under ANY scenario Utah would be the worst.

Now to your point, if the WCC did have more depth, the RPI of all three top WCC would be likely be better, however.

I Bleed Blue
Las Vegas, NV

It has been a great ride this year with how young this team is. Having them on TV all the time makes it even better. Thank you ESPN and BYUTV.

ClarkHippo
Tooele, UT

@ManInTheMiddle

I would say you're half correct. Take away BYU, Gonzaga, Saint Mary's and Loyola Marymount and the WCC is about as good as the bottom of the Ivy League.

Gonzaga and Saint Mary's could easily compete with schools from the PAC 12, Big 12 and Big 10, and Loyola Marymount could compete well in the Mountain West Conference, Conference USA or WAC.

Go Cougars !

Utah'95
FPO, AE

ManInTheMiddle,

Saying the Cougars "deserve MUCH MUCH BETTER" and suggesting the WCC isn't "worthy of our talent" won't win you many friends. And remember, BYU chose to join the WCC, it wasn't thrust upon them.

Rational,

If the quality at the top of the WCC "made up for" the conference's lack of depth, it wouldn't be rated lower as a conference than the Pac-12, which is currently in its worst season in recent memory.

Sagarin says: MWC #6, Pac-12 #8, and WCC #11.

The computers reward depth. Gonzaga, BYU, and St. Mary's are all solid teams, but none of the remaining 5 teams are rated in the Top 100. The Pac-12, on the other hand, has 8 teams ranked in the Top 100.

Regarding strength of schedule, only 1 team in the WCC (Pepperdine) has played one of the 100 most challenging schedules. In the Pac-12, 9 teams have played Top 100 schedules.

It's true that the Utes are unfortunately the lowest rate team in the three conferences you mentioned. That shouldn't be surprising since this is the worst Utah season in its history!

Your final statement - "if the WCC did have more depth, the RPI of all three top WCC would likely be better" may not be true. With the addition of some better teams, there would be an increased risk for losing games.

Bottom line - good luck, Cougars, finishing strong in the conference that you decided to join. Don't lose to anyone in your conference other than Gonzaga or St. Mary's and you should be fine.

thebigsamoan
Richmond, VA

@ManInTheMiddle, What's your definition of a joke? Is it because the WCC mostly play in so called high school arenas compared to other conferences? Let's face it dude, compared to the highly over rated Pac 12, I would have no problem figuring out which conference is the real joke. The problem is you and your overheated ego. BYU is fine where it's at and until something better comes along,(and I'm not holding my breath) I think they should stay put where they are and enjoy the company of those who WANT them in their conference.

Go Cougs!

CO Ute
PARKER, CO

@rational
Comments don't equate to your screen name. I will ignore the PAC 12 this year because they arent't very good, although the RPI conference ratings are higher than the WCC. Look at the recruiting class for some of the schools next year (especially AZ) and it appears the conference will soon be strong again.
Regard the rest of your supposed mergers ... how do you get 3 of the best 5 teams from the WCC if that conference merged with the MWC? NM,SDSU,UNLV, Gonzaga, St M, would be the best by far. But at least you got to make a comment about Utah that had nothing to do with the article. Hope that makes you proud.

CougarBlue
Heber City, UT

ManInTheMiddle your comments show glaringly your lack of knowledge of basketball and the weaknesses of other leagues. 12 leagues are better than the WCC. The PAC-12 surely is not one of them. Get a life and study basketball, then come back and make some comments with credibility. Right now you lack credibility based on your comments.

Mountainman56
Alpine, UT

ManInTheMiddle, Do you think that the 3 teams that beat BYU in the WCC feel that they are worthy of being in the same conference as BYU? How about S.F. who we barely squeaked past and who just beat Gonzaga? This is a very good conference and with the television coverage that BYU and the conference gets, it a much better situation for BYU than the MWC. There will likely be at least 3 NCAA bids from this 9 team league and maybe even a 4th if someone other than the top 3 wins the conference tournament. On the other hand, the mighty PAC 12, has little to no chance of getting more than 1 of its 12 teams into the big dance. From any semi-objective view point, the WCC is a quality conference with a few weak teams like all conferences have but a very high level of competition in the top half of the league.

ManInTheMiddle
SANDY, UT

Right now the RPI has BYU's schedule strength as 108. What's so hard to figure out here????? 107 schools have a stronger schedule. I'm tired of watching our guys play terrible basketball teams.

Last night we won on the road by 15 points and our RPI rank fell from 41 to 48. Being in this league is a waste, a complete waste. The numbers don't lie.

Right now the WCC is the 11th ranked conference. That means that the Mountain West (ranked 5), Atlantic 10 (ranked 7), Missouri Valley (ranked 8), and Conference USA (ranked 9) are all ranked higher. Even the Pac 12, who everyone will agree is TERRIBLE this year is ranked higher than the WCC. Can you even tell me who is in the Missouri Valley Conference, yet their conference is ranked 8 and ours is ranked 11. You can talk all you want about how the "top of the WCC is good" but the facts are the facts. The conference is terrible. Maybe if we beg the Mountain West would let us back in for basketball only???

What a joke to have our guys travel to gyms that are the size of Utah high school's gyms. It's pathetic and I'm disappointed more Cougar fans aren't saying that this emperor has no clothes. Get out of the WCC now.

Where's Stockton ???
Bowling Green, OH

BYU and thier national draw of loyal fans with thier wallets helped build the Mountain West and the WAC...so why would it be any wonder that the WCC wounldn't naturally take advantage of that as well.

Where's Stockton ???
Bowling Green, OH

MiddleMan I don't know where you have been sticking your head the last several years but the top half of the WCC especially perennial's St Mary's, Gonzaga and occasionally Loyola MM have been contenders...and along with BYU certainly this year... could all match play close with or beat most everything in the pac. You obviously haven't got a clue!!!

Where's Stockton ???
Bowling Green, OH

Co Ute....Recruiting doesn't even statistically stand unless you're in the top 5 consistently year in and year out... and in Basketball there is no better example of that than UCLA under John Wooden. Teams like N Carolina...Duke UConn..a resurging Kentucky and an oncoming Kansas team are coming close to being able to prove thier recruiting prowess statistically...but I'm sorry...the pac as a conference is by far way behind the Big East and the ACC right now so... I don't see that thier present recruiting is going to be a whole lot better unproven as recruiting always is... until these newbies actually hit the court and play a couple seasons... than what it's been for the last several years.

BlueHusky
Mission Viejo, CA

No argument that the WCC is not the ACC or Big East. But they play good hoops and this has been a fun season to watch. BYU's young team is doing well to be in the mix for the big dance. And, ultimately, the NCAA Tournament is a tournament, not a rigged beauty contest like the BCS is. If a team gets into the tournament, and wins, they are National Champions. Ever hear of Butler? How big is their gym?

You BYU haters can rant all you want, but BYU may get to the Dance. And therefore, they have a chance of winning the NC.

How many PAC12 teams will have a chance this year? Maybe Washington. Who else? The rest will have no chance to get into the Dance. But BYU has a chance, and if the do get in, they have a chance to win the NC.

Slim chance, true, but not zero. For you BYU detractors, what are the chances of your team making it to the Dance? Easily calculated: zero.

Cougarista
Salt Lake City, UT

BYU's affiliation with the WCC is fine. It's called faith based education with a primary commitment to strong undergraduate scholarship. Their universities rule athletics, not the reverse. But it's not the SEC or ACC or even the PAC-12? Thankfully true.

NightOwlAmerica
SALEM, OR

Why do BYU fans continue with the inferiority complex about the PAC12?
Yeah its a down hoops season. Most likely they will get two teams, the regular season and conference tournament champion into the dance. Maybe a third team.

You are in the WCC. You know, the conference that other BYU fans are bashing for small gyms. Well don't ask to be invited to the ACC. They have small gyms as well. That has not stopped Duke from winning national titles.
The upcoming game against Gonzaga is going to be good. And yes this is coming from a Washington State fan that will be watching.

And don't look now but USF is on the way up. You barely won in another small gym. Coach Walters is building a good team in the bay area with a good crop of recruits coming in.

So keep bashing the PAC. Its having a bad year but won't be down forever.

Someone mentioned the Missouri Valley Conference. Its another WCC with good teams like Creighton, Wichita St and Mizzou St.

Utah'95
FPO, AE

According to Sagarin:

-In the last 10 seasons, the Pac 10 has been ranked higher than the MWC and WCC 9 times. The only exception was in 2004, when the MWC was #8 and the Pac 10 was #9.

-The WCC has finished third to the Pac 10 and MWC in all ten seasons.

-At this point in the season, the MWC is more highly ranked than the Pac 12, and both of them are once again ranked ahead of the WCC.

The Washington Post has a NCAA tournament database. It indicates that the Pac 10 has won 57% of its tournament games in the last 15 years. The WCC has won 41%, and the MWC has won 33%.

I am not posting this as a "BYU hater." Read my posts - in them I frequently quote objective measures (statistics, rankings, etc.), and often conclude with well-wishes to the Cougars. But it's hard for me to not respond to posts that favor loyalty and emotion over objectivity.

If you are happy as a BYU fan with your current independence/conference affiliation, I'm happy for you. But I don't believe that three top 50 teams + 0 additional Top 100 teams trumps 2 Top 50 teams + 3 additional Top 100 teams (MWC) and 2 Top 50 teams + 6 additional Top 100 teams (Pac 12).

Sagarin clearly doesn't buy it either.

We'll see how the NCAA tournament selection committee feels about this stuff in about a month. But unfortunately, it's painfully obvious that Utah won't need to wait by the phone for an invitation to the Big Dance.

phoenix
Gilbert, AZ

Utah'95

Quit hiding behind the skirts of your conference and face reality.

Sagarin buys that the Top 3 teams in the WCC are better than the Top 3 teams in the PAC 12:

#19 California
#30 Gonzaga
#31 BYU
#38 Saint Mary's
#44 Arizona
#61 Washington

BYU is one of the BEST teams in the country (Top 10%)
Utah is one of the WORST teams in the country (Bottom 15%)

Sagarin
#31 BYU
#298 Utah

During the Dave Rose era, BYU has SEVEN consecutive 20+ win seasons
overall - 182-51 (78%)
conference - 89-21 (81%)
conference championships - FOUR

During the same time span, Utah has ONE 20+ win season, and FIVE losing seasons
overall - 100-115 (47%)
conference - 46-64 (42%)
conference championships - ONE

Just as in football, the highlight of the season for the PAC 12 conference bottom dweller, was beating Utah.

Football
Colorado 17
Utah 14

Basketball
USC 62
Utah 45

3grandslams
Iowa City, IA

The fans are stepping up. This frenzy is amazing considering the incredible high with Jimmer mania last year. Certainly an incredible, passionate fan base. Go Cougars!

moderateinmagna
MAGNA, UT

Night owl america, it is not the BYU fans saying anything about how small the gyms are in the WCC it is a bunch of uTAH TROLLS saying that byu plays in small gyms , but most of them are dolts that don,t realize that Utah ,CSU,SDSU,UNLV BYU,WYOMING,&many other teams at one time not too long ago all had small gyms that they were playing in. i have seen some of the gyms in the ACC & you are correct they are not real big either, i,m lkie you i get real tired of all the trolls bashing the PAC 12 and the WCC all it does is show their ignorance or stupidity.

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