PROVO -- The BYU men's basketball team opens its exhibition season Thursday when the Cougars host the EA Sports West All-Stars at 7 p.m. in the Marriott Center.
Favored to win the Mountain West Conference this season, BYU returns four starters and nine lettermen from last season's 23-9 NCAA Tournament team and adds some talented newcomers, including NJCAA All-American transfer Mike Hall. The Cougars are led by two Preseason All-MWC players in seniors Mark Bigelow and Rafael Araujo.
EA Sports opens its 13-game schedule Tuesday at Pepperdine and Wednesday at UC Santa Barbara before coming to Provo. The team consists of a nine-man roster of former college players, including former UCLA standout Ed O'Bannon. In addition to UCLA, Gonzaga, Arizona, Syracuse, Clemson, UNLV and Eastern Washington are represented on the roster. The team is coached by Dudley Rutherford.
Tickets to the game can be purchased at the Marriott Center Ticket Office or by calling 378-BYU1. Tickets prices are $5 for upper bench, $10 for upper chair, $15 for lower chair and $5 for students. Students can also attend with a BYU All-Sport Card.