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Quotes: WCC Tip-Off Event

Oct 29, 2012 - Posted by Whitney Craft Jordan at 2:30 pm | Updated: October 29, 2012 3:05 pm | Permalink

BYU head coach Dave Rose and senior Brock Zylstra spent a few minutes talking about this year's team as part of the 2012-13 West Coast Conference Men's basketball Tip-Off Event. 

Coming out of the Mountain West Conference, talk about that first year in the West Coast Conference and how it looked from your point of view.
Dave Rose: I think there are way more similarities than there are differences. The biggest difference is the venue – the MWC maybe has larger venues with larger crowds but as far as the competition and excitement, it’s very similar. I’ve been very impressed. I know the players a lot better now and I know we’re in for another tough year. This is a fantastic league. One thing comforting to us, and our fans, is that we had a successful season last year – we might not have done as well as we would’ve liked but we still got to play in the NCAA Tournament. That’s a great opportunity for our program.

Brock, what about your experience of playing in both leagues?
Brock Zylstra: I think coach hit it pretty well but the routine you get in as a player – you know what hotels you’re staying in, you know the arenas – I think that has been the biggest difference. As far as everything else goes you’re still playing basketball and you’re still competing against really good teams. It’s just basketball after all that other stuff.

Talk about the experience you have on this year's team.
Dave Rose: We certainly have a more experienced team going into this year than last year. Last year we had guys who had been in the program but they weren’t frontline guys. This year we’ve got Matt Carlino and Tyler Haws who have played a lot of minutes for us and were all-conference selections. We also bring back Brandon Davies, Brock (Zylstra) and Nate Austin – we have a lot of guys on our roster who have played important minutes for us coming in. That’ll be the difference this season. There’s no question that depth is the key to any good team, but especially to a team looking to win a conference championship. We’ll see though – in this conference your team has to be good early, good in the middle and good late.

What’s been the toughest West Coast Conference arena to play in?
Dave Rose: I would say Saint Mary’s, Gonzaga – I guess I’ll just list all the places we lost. No, but really, I think if you ask our players they’d say the feel of those venues is just a little different than the MWC but they are just as exciting and emotional.

How important is senior leadership to your team?
Brock Zylstra: I think there are a few of us on the team that have been playing for a few years who will step up. We have a few new guys on the team this year and everything is new to them so they look to somebody that has been there. We’re there to lead those younger guys and do whatever we can to help them out.

Do you think this conference helps prepare you for the postseason?
Dave Rose: There’s no question it does. This conference is extremely competitive. I think the players are very talented and the coaches are very strategic. One thing we had to work on last year was, sometimes, changing our plan of attack in the middle of the game. Hopefully our experience from last year can help us be successful this year. 

Williams named to CFPA National Freshman Performer of the Year Watch List

Oct 24, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 5:22 pm | Updated: October 24, 2012 5:24 pm | Permalink

BYU's Jamaal Williams was named to the College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) 2012 National Freshman Performer of the Year Watch List today.

Williams leads the Cougars in rushing with 79 carries for 409 yards and a team-high five touchdowns. His 409 rushing yards are the ninth-most among FBS Division-I freshman running backs while his five touchdowns are tied for the sixth most among freshman running backs and 76th nationally among all players. A product of Fontana, Calif., Williams ran for a career-best 155 yards and two touchdowns vs. Hawai'i. He also has 17 receptions for 172 yards.

Here is the CFPA's complete release on this year's watch list:

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (OCTOBER 24, 2012) – College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) announced the 2012 National Freshman Performer of the Year Watch List today. The watch list is a rough guide, highlighting freshmen whose performances merit recognition. Freshmen are not preemptively eliminated from consideration, and all players are eligible for weekly, annual, and career awards at their respective positions.

Previous FBS recipients include Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller (2011), South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore (2010), and Oregon running back LaMichael James (2009).

2012 National Freshman Performer of the Year Watch List:
Amari Cooper, Alabama Wide Receiver
T.J. Yeldon, Alabama Running Back
Jamaal Williams, BYU Running Back
Cory James, Colorado State Linebacker
Davante Adams, Fresno State Wide Receiver
Todd Gurley, Georgia Running Back
Keith Marshall, Georgia Running Back
Will Gregory, Hawaii Running Back
Landon Foster, Kentucky Punter
Kenneth Dixon, Louisiana Tech Running Back
Jeremy Hill, LSU Running Back
Kevin Grooms, Marshall Running Back
Stefon Diggs, Maryland Wide Receiver
Duke Johnson, Miami Running Back
Marcus Mariota, Oregon Quarterback
Storm Woods, Oregon State Running Back
Austin Lopez, San Jose State Placekicker
Trevone Boykin, TCU Quarterback
Devonte Fields, TCU Defensive Lineman
Jaden Oberkrom, TCU Placekicker
Johnathan Gray, Texas Running Back
Johnny Manziel, Texas A&M Quarterback
Alonzo Russell, Toledo Wide Receiver
Austin Brown, UAB Quarterback
Brett Hundley, UCLA Quarterback
Leonard Williams, USC Defensive Lineman
Jordan Nielsen, Utah State Defensive Lineman
Jaime Wilson, Western Michigan Wide Receiver

About College Football Performance Awards (CFPA):
The goal of College Football Performance Awards is to provide the most scientifically rigorous conferments in college football. Recipients are selected exclusively based upon objective scientific rankings of the extent to which individual players increase the overall effectiveness of their teams.

As prominent scholars from a wide variety of disciplines note, CFPA eliminates the politics and biases that vitiate balloting-based awards. Furthermore, CFPA has received praise from both Republican and Democratic White House officials for promoting objectivity and fairness in college football.

Visit the Official Website of College Football Performance Awards: and follow CFPA @CFPerformance.

Opponent Preview: Northern Arizona & Virginia Tech

Oct 23, 2012 - Posted by Whitney Craft Jordan at 12:36 pm | Updated: October 23, 2012 12:38 pm | Permalink

Northern Arizona

Coach: Jack Murphy
2011-12 record: 5-24
Big Sky Conference record: 1-15, 9tn
Postseason: none 
NCAA tournament appearances (last): 2 (2000)


Top Returners
Gabe Roger G 6-2 SR 10.2 ppg 1.3 rpg
Michael Dunn G 6-0 SR 6.8 ppg 3.0 rpg


Virginia Tech

Coach: James Johnson, beginning his first season with Virginia Tech in 2012-13
2011-12 record: 16-17
ACC record: 4-12, 9th
Postseason: none
NCAA tournament appearances (last): 8 (2007)


Top Returners
Erick Green G 6-3 SR 15.6 ppg 3.3 rpg
Jarell Eddie F 6-7 JR 9.1 ppg 4.8 rpg

BYU and Notre Dame, fireside and Knute Rockne

Oct 22, 2012 - Posted by Kenny Cox at 6:07 pm | Updated: October 22, 2012 8:58 pm | Permalink

As usual, the BYU football team held a fireside the night before the game between the Cougars and Notre Dame. A local newspaper, Michigan City News Dispatch, covered the event and featured the fireside in detail. You can read about it by selecting the link below. 

Read the article

BYU Athletics personnel also spoke at a special Notre Dame function on campus Friday night before the game, BYU associate athletic director Duff Tittle, who oversees athletic communications, spoke to the Notre Dame Smokers, a Knights of Columbus council that supports the Fighting Irish. Tittle spoke on the history of BYU and talked about unique connections between BYU and Notre Dame over the years.

One story was of particular interest:

When BYU played its first season of football in 1922, the sport was relatively new to the western United States. In 1923, physical education director Eugene L. Roberts invited legendary Notre Dame coach Knute Rockne to Utah to run a football coaches clinic. Rockne led the Fighting Irish to back-to-back national championships in 1919 and 1920 and was considered one of the country’s great football minds.

Rockne accepted the invitation and traveled to Provo in the summer of 1923 to conduct the first football coaches clinic in the state of Utah. In order to pay Rockne for his services, BYU hired him as a professor for spring term, which means the legendary coach was actually an adjunct faculty member at BYU for a short time.

On July 16, 1923, Rockne sent a letter to Roberts thanking him for his hospitality during his stay in Utah and letting him know he would grade the final papers for the class “just as soon as I get a few minutes to myself.”

Two years later, while searching for a new head football coach, Roberts communicated with Rockne again, this time to get his opinion about C.J. Hart who he was considering for the job.

On July 12, 1925, Rockne sent a reply letter to Roberts saying that Hart “impresses me very favorably.” Rockne also invited Hart and Roberts to “come down to Notre Dame on August 15 for two weeks,” which of course they accepted.

Of that trip to South Bend, Hart related the following, “Coach Roberts and I went east to attend a coaching clinic. We studied two weeks under the famed coach of Notre Dame, Knute Rockne.” Upon returning to Provo, the two BYU coaches introduced a new style of play so distinct to the conference that it became known as the “Roberts-Hart system.”

Photo caption:
On the steps of the old BYU Academy building, Knute Rockne, famous coach of Notre Dame, was a teacher at the first football coaches school in the state of Utah, organized by Eugene L. Roberts (front row, far left) during the summer of 1923. Rockne is in the center (front row, fourth from right).

Opponent Preview: E. New Mexico & Baylor

Oct 19, 2012 - Posted by Whitney Craft Jordan at 1:17 pm | Permalink

Eastern New Mexico

Coach: Andrew Helton
2011-12 record: 14-14
Lone Star Conference record: 7-11, 6th South Division
Postseason: none
Notables: Last season, head coach Andrew Helton led the Greyhounds to their second-straight season with double-digit wins for the first time since the 2006-07 season. 


Top Returners
Devone Davis 6-1 G SR 9.0 ppg 3.3 rpg



Coach: Scott Drew
2011-12 record: 30-8
Big 12 record: 12-6, T-3rd
Postseason: NCAA tournament Elite Eight, lost to Kentucky
NCAA tournament appearances (last): 7 (2012) 
Notables: Ranked 18 in the 2012-13 Preseason USA Today coaches poll.


Top Returners
Pierre Jackson
*Big 12 Preseason Player of the Yr
*AP Honorable Mention All-American
G 5-10 SR 13.8 ppg 5.9 apg
Brady Heslip G 6-2 JR 10.3 ppg 1.3 rpg

Post-practice interviews: Oct. 16

Oct 19, 2012 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 11:07 am | Permalink

BYU basketball coach Dave Rose, senior forward Brandon Davies and sophomore guard Tyler Haws spoke with the media following practice on Tuesday, Oct. 16, the fourth official practice of the season. Practice started on Oct. 12.

Dave Rose press conference at BYU Basketball Media Day

Oct 19, 2012 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 11:02 am | Permalink

On Oct. 10, BYUtv hosted BYU Basketball Media Day. See head coach Dave Rose's press conference and group interviews with several players below.

BYU Basketball Media Day interviews part 3

Oct 19, 2012 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 10:53 am | Updated: October 19, 2012 11:00 am | Permalink

On Oct. 10, BYUtv hosted BYU Basketball Media Day and conducted interviews with all 15 members of the team. See the last five interviews below.

BYU Basketball Media Day interviews part 2

Oct 19, 2012 - Posted by Kyle Chilton at 10:48 am | Updated: October 19, 2012 11:01 am | Permalink

On Oct. 10, BYUtv hosted BYU Basketball Media Day and conducted interviews with all 15 members of the team. See the second set of five interviews below.