BYU basketball: Cougars knock off Mercer, advance to NIT quarterfinals

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  • Cougars1 Bluffdale, UT
    March 26, 2013 9:27 p.m.

    Please tell me that you are smarter than to think that the 68 teams in the NCAA Tournament are the top 68 teams in college basketball. If the selection committee has a 15 seed in the sweet 16, then I am sure there are plenty of teams that should be in the Tourney but aren't. Because of the way the selection process works, it is impossible to select the best 68 teams.

    That said, based on the comments here, Cougar fans are really not under the allusion that they belong in the Tourney. Playing well in the post-season does not mean you belong in the Tourney; you have to earn it in the regular season or conference tournament.

    I am also not sure that they "should" beat Southern Miss. They are a tough team at home.

  • esodije ALBUQUERQUE, NM
    March 26, 2013 3:26 p.m.

    To our resident pedant: "Unnerve" also means "to cause to become nervous," which pretty aptly describes how I (and others, evidently) react to watching a game announced by Bill Walton. Seriously, last night I felt so embarrassed for the guy that I had to stop watching the game at several junctures. I, too, like personality in "color" commentators, but I'd much rather hear Steve Vail say "Wow!" a hundred times during a volleyball match than to listen to Walton run off at the mouth.

  • flatlander Omaha, NE
    March 26, 2013 3:05 p.m.

    Glad their playing well but these teams are not equal to big dance teams. Look at the sweet 16, no WCC, no MWC teams left. Y is clearly one of the better teams ranked around 70 so they should beat these other teams.

  • NevadaCoug Overton, NV
    March 26, 2013 1:32 p.m.

    It was definitely an exciting game. The Marriot was loud to start the game and loud to finish. On the post-game radio show, one of the Mercer players said he will look back a year from now and be grateful he got to play in such a great environment.

    I've been a critic of Zylstra, but he certainly stepped up last night. I don't remember him taking a bad shot, and his defense was usually pretty good. He wasn't afraid to foul either. Usually we are blasting guys when they get in foul trouble, but I feel that Zylstra's 4 fouls were committed by being aggressive in the right spots. I don't think any of them can be called silly fouls.

    It seems strange to see that Haws scored 24 points. He had a 'quiet' game.

    Davies is making the most of his extra time. Keep it up, please!

    And overall the team just really impressed me with the intensity last night. One of the biggest roars from the crowd came on a scramble for a loose ball. No quit in these guys. Play like this on Wednesday and hold your heads high, win or lose.

  • LindonMan Lindon, UT
    March 26, 2013 1:07 p.m.

    BYU still playing, lil' sister still pouting!

  • Jon from PA Ligonier, PA
    March 26, 2013 1:03 p.m.

    Nice Win! They have been playing great.Hope the Cougars can keep it up for a few more games and carry it into next year!Carlino has looked great the last 60 min of game time. This will be something to build on for next year.

  • HP in Georgia Atlanta, GA
    March 26, 2013 12:10 p.m.

    Congratulations to the Cougars. What a fine team and program. Most Mercer folks I know hope the NIT trophy for 2013 ends up in Provo. Our Bears have had a great season as well, and we Mercer grads look forward to next year. We are also pulling for our conference rivals playing in the NCAA, Florida Gulf Coast University. College basketball is good and exciting nationwide.

  • SlopJ30 St Louis, MO
    March 26, 2013 10:47 a.m.

    Our friend in NM found Walton's commentary "unnerving"? Really? Like, it made you lose courage and confidence? Hmm. Well, I enjoy Bill. He's definitely his own thing, like Dickie V. I want personalities announcing, not just some guy with a smooth voice telling me what I'm seeing on screen and making obvious points aimed at people who've never watched a game before.

    I'm unsure about Calvert. He doesn't lack for confidence, but the kid's shot is crooked. 20% on threes for the year. Yes, it's a limited sample size, but 20% is 20%. We'll see, but he clearly isn't ready now.

  • trentster TUSTIN, CA
    March 26, 2013 9:50 a.m.

    Ditto on the Bill Walton call. It is the most entertaining call I can remember him doing on a game. Over the past few years I have found him annoying, but tonight he was informative and fun to listen to. He is the greatest college center I have witnessed playing. Portland would have won a few more rings had he not suffered all those foot injuries. The NIT version of the cougars is far removed from the regular season guys. What gives? Carlino has stopped being a turn-over machine, Zylstra is playing defense and hitting timely threes, Davies is not committing stupid fouls, and Haws is Haws. What could have been had they all figured this mess out earlier. Keep it up!

  • So. Cal Reader San Diego, CA
    March 26, 2013 9:45 a.m.

    @ esodije: I couldn't agree with you more about Walton. I've always liked the guy and his analysis work in the past, and he's a local guy to us in San Diego County. However, he is horrible! I actually muted the audio the last 3 minutes of the game. ESPN can do much, much better.

  • So. Cal Reader San Diego, CA
    March 26, 2013 9:45 a.m.

    Good job, Cougs! I've been very critical of the team during the season. But they've been very solid the last two games against very good completition. I think this is the level of effort & results we all were looking for and expecting. Keep it going. As much as we wanted another Tourney birth, better to be playing NIT than not playing at all. Carlino, keep rubbing that rabbit's foot. It's working!

  • JayDee West Jordan, UT
    March 26, 2013 9:41 a.m.

    How about we add one to the mantra...

    Harline is still open.

    George is still running.

    BYU is STILL playing.

  • byufan1993 Provo, , UT
    March 26, 2013 9:21 a.m.


    What about Kyle Collinsworth? He's a guard isn't he? Or was he a shooting guard? I can't remember...

  • esodije ALBUQUERQUE, NM
    March 26, 2013 9:16 a.m.

    Is there a more "stream of consciousness"-style commentator than Bill Walton? The guy literally says whatever pops into his head at any given moment, which I find unnerving and, finally, annoying. He paid a lot of compliments to BYU basketball and to Utah in general, but I couldn't make much sense of it. This game showed, once again, that as goes Matt Carlino (and, to a lesser degree, Brock Zylstra), so goes BYU. The Cougs can lose to practically anyone if only Haws and Davies are scoring, but they can beat good teams with a third scorer.

  • Cinci Man FT MITCHELL, KY
    March 26, 2013 9:11 a.m.

    Great surprise from the Cougars playing two good games in a row. Let's try for a third and really knock the lights out Wednesday! Go Cougars!

  • CougFaninTX Frisco, TX
    March 26, 2013 9:08 a.m.

    Cougs are in fire! Hopefully they'll stay hot playing outside the Marriott Center. I'd love to see them in NYC.

    Davies, Haws and Carlino are stealing the headlines, but Austin and Zylstra are playing better than I've ever seen them play and making significant contributions.

    Calvert is not ready to be a starting PG, but I'm very impressed with his play. It will be an interesting battle in 2015 between he and Emery for the starting PG role. Both should be outstanding!

  • Danish American Payson, UT
    March 26, 2013 8:38 a.m.

    I think that playing the way they played last night, they could have even beat Utah. Right, ChrisB?

  • dutgut Saint George, UT
    March 26, 2013 8:30 a.m.

    How does hitting "a" 3-pointer with a 5 pt lead take the lead into double digits? 5+3=8 last time I checked.

  • thebigsamoan Richmond, VA
    March 26, 2013 8:27 a.m.

    Winning is always fun! Let's keep it going Cougs! But like metamoracoug, I too wondered where the heck have you been all year long. This could've been an NCAA run, but, we'll enjoy this just as much and hope it will last as long as it takes. This sure is fun!

    Go Cougars!

  • Steve Michaelis KAYSVILLE, UT
    March 26, 2013 8:00 a.m.

    How is that attendance number a record?

    March 26, 2013 7:50 a.m.

    Wow, two complete games in a row, if the Cougars can do it again for a third game they have a good chance at beating Southern Miss. Go Cougars!

  • metamoracoug metamora, IL
    March 26, 2013 7:41 a.m.

    It was a fun game to watch, but I'm still wondering where this team has been hiding all year. Looking forward with the match up against USM. One more game to get to the Garden!

  • Pa. Reader Harrisburg, PA
    March 26, 2013 6:47 a.m.

    A very entertaining game was made even more so by having Bill Walton on the microphone for ESPN.
    His tributes to great Cougars of the past were wonderful. He was clearly having fun calling the game and he made it more fun for this Cougar fan! Thanks Bill.

  • hobbes1012003 Kaysville, UT
    March 26, 2013 6:16 a.m.

    I hope this intensity and sharp shooting continues at southern Miss! lets go Cougs!