If BYU starts the game with the urgency that this is a game that they absolutely
have to win in order to get an NCAA tournament invite, which it is, then the
Cougars have a very good chance of beating the Matadors.
Strong starts are overrated. BYU started strong at Baylor and lost big. How
many times have you seen a game where a team scores a bunch of points in the
first few minutes, only to lose the game as it unfolds?Frank Arnold
used to say that the most important part of a basketball game is the last few
minutes of the first half and the first few minutes of the second half.
However, BYU does need to keep things close at the start of the game or risk
making a comeback impossible.
As much as I dislike the slow starts, it's better than getting an early
lead and then not being able to finish and losing down the stretch - like a team
up North. If the Cougs fall behind by double digits against Santa
Clara, Saint Mary's or the Zags; they will not be able to recover like
they've done against a couple other teams.
If I use Sagarin's Predictor from his SOS rankings I get BYU at 83.93 and
Santa Clara at 83.55 which, in the world of Statistics, means it is a toss-up!
Hopefully BYU can have a great FULL game! It should be an exciting
game to watch!