PROVO -- BYU plays its final exhibition basketball game Saturday when it hosts the London Leopards at 7 p.m. in the Marriott Center.
"We will be looking to see improvement in several areas, especially defensive rebounding and turnovers," BYU coach Steve Cleveland said. "We want to make sure we compete for a full 40 minutes."
The Cougars are coming off a three-point overtime loss to the EA Sports All-Stars, who defeated fellow Mountain West Conference school New Mexico Thursday, 87-81. Senior forward Eric Nielsen led BYU with 23 points against EA Sports, while sophomore forward Mark Bigelow added 22 in his return. Bigelow was the 1999 WAC Freshman of the Year before leaving to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Cleveland is expected to stay with a larger rotation Saturday in the team's final exhibition. Likely starters include Nielsen, Bigelow, junior guard/forward Travis Hansen, senior guard Matt Montague and freshman center Jared Jensen.
The Leopards are club team from London playing their third contest of a five-game November tour of the United States. The Leopards are coming off a 73-60 loss at Utah Wednesday. They opened with an 84-73 defeat at Bucknell on Nov. 2 and lost at Northern Iowa Monday, 89-74.
BYU has an 18-5 overall exhibition record against foreign touring teams. Last year BYU didn't play a foreign team because the team's tour was canceled. The Cougars will use Saturday's exhibition to prepare for the regular season opener on Nov. 17 at the University of San Diego. BYU's first regular season home game is Nov. 24 against Arizona State.