Keena Young leads the team and is seventh in the MWC in field goal percentage after tying his career high with 16 points against Wyoming. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
GAME #16 FAST FACTS
BYU COUGARS (10-5, 2-2 MWC)
SAN DIEGO STATE AZTECS (11-6, 4-1 MWC)
Saturday, Jan. 21, 2006
Cox Arena (12,414)
San Diego, Calif.
7:00 p.m. PST
BYU, Dave Rose (10-5 in first year; same overall)
SDSU, Steve Fisher (92-103 in seventh year; 276-185 in 15 years overall)
BYU leads 38-18 after the Aztecs swept the season series last year for the first time since 1985
SportsWest -- KSL, channel 5, in Utah, Cox, channel 4, in San Diego, and ESPN Full Court pay-per-view (Tom Kirkland, play-by-play; Steve Lappas, game analysis)
KSL Newsradio (102.7 FM/1160 AM) and the Cougar Sports Network (6 p.m. PST pregame show -- Greg Wrubell, play-by-play; Mark Durrant, game analysis)
Live audio and live stats broadcasts are available at www.byucougars.com/basketball_m/
BYU TRAVELS TO SAN DIEGO STATE SATURDAY
BYU (10-5, 2-2 MWC) hits the road again for a contest at San Diego State (11-6, 4-1 MWC) Saturday at 7 p.m. PST (8 p.m. MST). The game is a SportsWest production available in Utah on KSL-TV, channel 5, in San Diego on Cox, channel 4 and nationally via ESPN Full Court with Tom Kirkland and Steve Lappas calling the action. The radio broadcast can be heard on KSL Newsradio (102.7 FM/1160 AM) and the Cougar Sports Network with Greg Wrubell and Mark Durrant calling the play-by-play action.
BYU returns home for a Wednesday night matchup against league-newcomer TCU. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m. The game will be tape-delay broadcast Thursday, Jan. 26 on BYU-TV at 10 p.m. MST and on KBYU at 11:30 p.m. MST.
COUGAR QUICK HITS
-- Coming off a disappointing 9-21 season after five straight postseason appearances, BYU looks to return to the ranks of conference contenders and postseason invitees under the direction of new head coach Dave Rose, who served the past eight seasons as Steve Cleveland's lead assistant.
-- BYU is 10-5 overall, including 8-1 at home, and has won eight straight in the Marriott Center. The Cougars are 1-4 away and 1-0 at a neutral site. BYU averages an MWC-leading 76.7 ppg, and shoots .475 from the field (third in the MWC), including .372 from long range and .698 from the line, second in the league. Cougar opponents average 68.5 points on .425 shooting, .325 from three and .723 from the line. BYU pulls down 35.7 rebounds per game, 2.4 more than its opponents. The Cougars dish out an MWC-leading 17.1 assists per game.
-- Redshirt freshman forward/center Trent Plaisted leads BYU in scoring (12.5), followed by senior guard Brock Reichner (10.0). Junior forward Keena Young is the top Cougar rebounder (5.6), followed by Plaisted (4.7). Junior point guard Rashaun Broadus is the MWC's top assist maker (4.6), followed by junior combo guard Austin Ainge (3.1), who is sixth. Eleven Cougars are logging 10 minutes or more per game.
-- Among BYU's returning players, honorable mention All-MWC guard Austin Ainge was the team's second-leading scorer and top assist man last year, and forward Keena Young was BYU's leading rebounder. Other returners with starting experience last year include swingman Jimmy Balderson, who led Canada in scoring at the World University Games this summer; center Derek Dawes, who made 13 starts in the middle last year; and guard Mike Rose, who made seven starts last year and averaged 7.7 points while making a team-leading 56 treys. Lone senior Brock Reichner made two starts late last year after mostly limited action during the season.
LOOKING AT SAN DIEGO STATE
San Diego State, the preseason league favorite, is 11-6 overall and first in the Mountain West Conference with a 4-1 record. The Aztecs return four starters and six lettermen from last year's 11-18 team that finished sixth in the conference standings at 4-10. This year's team is 7-1 at home and 3-4 away with a 1-1 neutral-court record. SDSU has won its last three games with victories coming at Utah, vs. UNLV and at TCU. The Aztecs also recorded a win over Colorado State in their league-opener and have only lost at Air Force in conference play. Junior guard Brandon Heath, who was selected to the preseason All-MWC team, leads the Aztecs and the league in scoring, averaging 17.9 ppg on 42.4 percent shooting from the field in a team-leading 33.5 minutes per game. Heath, a second-team All-MWC selection last season, also adds 2.9 rebounds per game and has recorded 24 steals on the year. He is fourth in the league in three-point shooting (.426) and leads the MWC in three-pointers made with 46. Marcus Slaughter, a junior forward, averages a double-double for the Aztecs with 16.4 points on 50.7 percent shooting and 10.8 rebounds per game. Named the Top Returning Player in this year's preseason poll, Slaughter leads the league on the boards and is third in scoring. Mohamed Abukar, a 6-10 transfer from Florida, was selected as the Top Newcomer in the preseason poll and is averaging 11.4 points and 4.1 rebounds for the Aztecs. Due to transfer rules, the junior forward was not eligible for competition until mid-December but has played in seven games and started six since returning to the court. True freshman Kyle Spain is the fourth Aztec scoring in double figures as he averages 10.3 ppg to go along with 6.6 rpg, which is second on the team. A 6-5 shooting guard, Spain is shooting 50 percent from the floor, including 50 percent from three-point range. Off the bench, senior center Mohamed Camara is third on the team in rebounds with 5.2 per game and is shooting 54 percent from the floor, adding 3.6 ppg. He has also recorded 14 blocks, second only to Slaughter's 18. As a team, SDSU shoots .464 from the floor, including .404 from behind the arc, the second-best mark in the MWC, and .689 from the free-throw line, while Aztec opponents are shooting .424 from the field, .338 from three-point range and .662 from the line. SDSU outscores its opponents 71.7 - 65.4 and has a significant edge on the glass, pulling down 36.4 rebounds to its opponents' 30.0 boards per game. The Aztecs' rebounding margin leads the conference while their rebounding offense ranks third and their rebounding defense is second.
SDSU'S PROBABLE STARTERS
Pos. # Name Ht. Wt. Yr. PPG RPG
F 33 Kyle Spain 6-5 218 Fr. 10.3 6.6
F 34 Mohamed Abukar 6-10 216 Jr. 11.4 4.1
F 42 Marcus Slaughter 6-9 220 Jr. 16.4 10.8
G 1 Brandon Heath 6-4 198 Jr. 17.9 2.9
G 3 Richie Williams 5-9 158 Fr. 6.1 2.3
SDSU'S LAST OUTING -- Slaughter's Big Night Propels Aztecs Past TCU
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) - Marcus Slaughter had 23 points and 18 rebounds to lead San Diego State past TCU 76-57 on Wednesday night. Brandon Heath added 19 points and Richie Williams had 16 for San Diego St. (11-6, 4-1 Mountain West), which never trailed and won for the seventh time in nine games. The Aztecs are off to their best start since 1995. Nile Murry led TCU (4-14, 0-4) with 16 points. Judson Stubbs had 13 and Chudi Chinweze added 12 for the Horned Frogs, who lost their sixth straight. San Diego St. outrebounded TCU 44-23, including 14 offensive rebounds, as many as TCU had on defense. The Aztecs shot 60 percent from the field in the second half and held TCU to 34 percent shooting for the game.
BYU owns a 38-18 advantage over the Aztecs in a series that dates back to 1941. The Cougars are 15-14 in San Diego and 23-3 in Provo. BYU has won 11 of the last 16 games, but the Aztecs swept the season series last year for the first time since 1985. Chris Walton scored as time expired to give the Aztecs a 59-57 win, their first in Provo since 1996. In San Diego, the Aztecs posted an eight-point victory. The two teams split the prior season's games with each squad winning in its home arena. SDSU defeated the Cougars 65-61 in San Diego on a last-second bucket and a disputed technical foul call. One month later, the Aztecs forced overtime in Provo, but fell 83-69 as Cougar Mike Hall blocked the game-winning shot with 2.7 seconds left in regulation and then sparked BYU on a 16-0 overtime run to seal the victory.
BYU SERIES RECORD VS. SDSU
Overall Series Record: BYU leads 38-18
BYU Record in Provo: 23-3
BYU Record in San Diego: 15-14
BYU Record at Neutral Sites: 0-1
BYU Record under Dave Rose: 0-0
BYU Record in Overtime Games: 3-2 (1-1 Rd, 2-1 Hm)
Last Overtime Game: 2004, BYU won in Provo, 83-69
Longest BYU Win Streak: 11 (1990-95)
Longest SDSU Win Streak: 3 (1941-77)
Largest BYU Margin of Victory: 40, 106-66 in 1982
Largest SDSU Margin of Victory: 19, 89-70 in 1985
Most Points Scored by BYU: 123 in 1980
Most Points Scored by SDSU: 104 in 1977
QUOTING BYU HEAD COACH DAVE ROSE ...
"Slaughter and Heath pack a pretty good 1-2 punch. They've both got experience in this league and have been scoring for a long time. They've both started since their freshman year. They've got the confidence to score at this level."
"We're going to do a lot of things to try and guard Slaughter. I don't think you can just put one guy on him and expect him to take care of him. We're going to try and make him work hard for everything he gets. We want to contest his shots. He's going to get shots. We just want to make them as tough as possible."
"San Diego State has the potential to have three guys who can hurt you. (Mohamed) Abukar is starting to establish himself. They've also got a freshman, Kyle Spain, who was the Mountain West Conference Player of the Week a couple weeks ago. They have talent, and they've been playing really well together."
"We just played the hottest team in the league with Wyoming, who had won three games before us, and now we have another team who's hot in the league and has won three straight. The preparation for both teams is very similar. They're both very athletic teams who rebound well and make plays off the basket."
LAST YEAR IN SAN DIEGO -- AZTECS TRIP UP COUGARS
SAN -- A heroic effort by senior Mike Hall was not enough to lift the Cougars past the Aztecs as BYU fell 66-58 in Cox Arena Monday night. Cougar guard Mike Hall delivered a career-high 24 points, including 4-4 shooting from beyond the arc and Jimmy Balderson added 14 points, hitting BYU's four other three-pointers in the game. It was a shaky start for both the Cougars and the Aztecs in the first half. Fortunately for BYU, Keena Young's eight first-half points and astounding play by Hall kept the Cougars on top until the eight-minute mark when the Aztecs made a run to overtake the Cougars and head into halftime with a 33-26 advantage. Early turnovers led to another rocky start for the Cougars in the second half, allowing the Aztecs to extend their lead to 12 points. BYU crawled back with a 13-0 run to take a 40-39 lead at the 14 minute mark, but the Cougar advantage was quickly taken away by the Aztecs. Hot shooting from beyond the arc by BYU kept the game within reach, but the Cougars could not recover from costly turnovers and missed free throws down the stretch. The Cougars shot 46 percent from the field, 40 percent from beyond the arc and 57 percent from the free throw line. The Cougars were also outscored in the paint by the Aztecs, 14-34. BYU has now dropped its sixth game in MWC play and is currently tied for sixth in the league standings with a 2-6 record. The Cougars return home for two games when they match up against Wyoming and Colorado State. The Cougars and Cowboys will meet Saturday at 7 p.m. while tipoff for BYU-CSU is set for Monday at 8 p.m. Both games will be televised by SportsWest Productions.
LAST YEAR IN PROVO -- COUGARS LOSE HEARTBREAKER TO SDSU
PROVO -- BYU's men's basketball team lost to the San Diego State Aztecs 59-57 on the final shot to open Mountain West Conference play Saturday in the Marriott Center. The Cougars started the game strong with a lot of energy, jumping on the Aztecs with a 10-0 run. Behind quick scoring from senior Mike Hall and aggressive play from freshman Chris Miles, BYU took control of the game early, leading 28-19 at the half. However, with turnovers plaguing the Cougars in the second half and almost no offense in critical situations, SDSU clawed their way back to take the lead 42-40 with 10:31 remaining in the game. "We didn't have a real good offense tonight," BYU head coach Steve Cleveland said. "It's unfortunate that we didn't score more." BYU closed the gap, but crucial mistakes resulting in turnovers by the Cougars in the waning moments allowed SDSU to capitalize. With one second left and the scored tied at 57, the Aztecs' Chris Walton hit the falling away game-winning shot. "The players are hurting and if you've never played the game, you won't understand," Cleveland said. Hall led the Cougars in scoring with 16 points, while Jared Jensen added 10. Five different Cougar players had six or more rebounds; Jensen (7), Hall (6), Mike Rose (6), Austin Ainge (6), and Garner Meads (6), contributing to a season-high total of 47. Until this game, BYU had been 5-0 when leading with five minutes remaining in the game. "What you'll remember from this game is the mistakes in the last minutes," Cleveland said. With the loss BYU falls to 5-10 on the season while the Aztecs move to 7-7. BYU next plays Montana State-Billings to finish out non-conference action January 11 at 7 p.m. in the Marriott Center.
BYU's LAST OUTING -- Reserves Big In Victory Over Pokes
PROVO -- Playing without two key players, BYU got big performances from Austin Ainge and Trent Plaisted leading to an 80-67 victory over Wyoming Wednesday night in the Marriott Center. The win marks BYU's eighth straight home victory. The Cougars, now 10-5 (2-2, MWC), were without the services of Rashaun Broadus and Derek Dawes. Broadus, who was suspended for violating team rules, had started every game for BYU this year prior to the Wyoming game while Dawes sat out due to an injury suffered at UNLV. Ainge started his second game of the season and his first game at point guard and scored 12 points while adding two assists. Plaisted scored a team-high 17 points and grabbed eight boards. Keena Young also came up big, tying his career high with 16 points and picking up six rebounds. Defense prevailed early in the game with the two teams combining for just one point in the first 2:33. The Cowboys' (10-8, 3-2 MWC) Justin Williams had two early blocked shots, but BYU's Cummard came up with two steals that turned into five Cougar points. Offensively, each team settled in with BYU maintaining a 16-13 lead with 11:54 remaining. The two teams matched baskets with the Cougars getting hustle baskets from Keena Young, who scored four early points courtesy of two offensive rebounds in his first six minutes of play. Using the three-ball, Wyoming retook the lead 28-25 when Brandon Ewing hit consecutive triples. Ainge responded with a three of his own to tie the game as the Cougars retook the lead and clung to a 32-31 advantage with under four minutes to play in the first half. Ewing made a last second drive to the hoop to end the half, dropping in a floater to give the Cowboys a 38-36 halftime lead. Wyoming entered the game shooting 43 percent from the field. The Cowboys shot 52 percent in the first half while the Cougars managed only 40 percent shooting compared to its 48 percent season mark. BYU was led in the first half by Cummard, who picked up his career high in the first half by scoring 11. Sparked by Ainge, the Cougars came out running in the second half, jumping out of the gates with a 13-3 run to pick up a 49-41 lead. Ainge knocked down a three and a coast-to-coast layup to force a Wyoming timeout. BYU's run continued as the Cougar defense stymied the Cowboys. Wyoming missed 13 of its first 14 shots in the second half while BYU made nine of its first 15. The Cougars held the Cowboys scoreless for 6:30, a streak that ended with a free throw. Wyoming went without a field goal for almost nine minutes. BYU held the Cowboys to just 26 percent shooting in the second half. The Cougars built a 15-point lead midway through the second half and maintained the double-digit lead throughout much of the second half until, benefiting from free throws and a full-court press, the Cowboys cut the lead to eight with 3:53 left in the game. Wyoming maintained its pressure, cutting the BYU lead to 68-61 with 1:27 remaining in the game. The Cowboys would get no closer as the Cougars beat the break and made foul shots down the stretch.
WHAT WAS SAID AFTER THE GAME ...
BYU Head Coach Dave Rose:
-- "The key to winning the game was the first eight minutes of the second half. It was big to come out in the second half and get the crowd in the game. It really gave us a lot of energy."
-- "I'm proud of the way our guys came together. These games will all get pretty intense. Each night it will be the team that executes and puts forth the best effort."
-- "The key for our guys is confidence. You get confidence from wins."
-- "Justin (Williams) is a player. I played with a great shot-blocker in college in Hakeem Olajuwon. He reminds me of him."
Wyoming Head Coach Steve McClain:
-- "We just couldn't make shots. Steve (Leven) had a couple wide-open shots from the three. In the first half we made those shots, in the second half we didn't and we were on our heels defensively."
-- "We always talk that if you're going to outrebound somebody it can't be that close. They're a good rebounding team."
-- "Austin Ainge was All-Conference last year and I told the kids before the game he's probably going to come out and show he should be starting point guard."
BYU NOTES FROM LAST OUTING
-- Junior Austin Ainge made his second start of the season and his first at point guard in place of Rashaun Broadus, who was suspended for the game due to violating team rules. Brock Reichner, Lee Cummard, Fernando Malaman and Trent Plaisted rounded out the starting five for the Cougars. Broadus had started every game this year prior to the suspension and is the Mountain West Conference's top assist maker, averaging 4.6 dishes per game.
-- Individual Career Highs: Lee Cummard -- 13 points, 5 field goals made, 4 assists, steals; Keena Young -- 16 points (tied), 6 free throws made; Fernando Malaman -- 8 rebounds; Brock Reichner -- 8 free throws made.
-- Individual Season Highs: Austin Ainge -- 12 points, 5 field goals made.
-- Team Season Highs/Lows: Least three-point field goals made -- 3, Lowest three-point field goal percentage -- .200; Most free throws made -- 25.
-- With the win, the Cougars are now 10-5 and have surpassed last year's victory total, when they suffered a disappointing 9-21 season to end five straight postseason appearances.
-- BYU's home victory over Wyoming marks its ninth home win of the season and its eighth straight.
-- With the win, BYU is now 2-5 when trailing at the break, with the wins coming against Wyoming and Boise State. The Cougars trailed at the half for the seventh time this season with a 36-38 deficit against the Cowboys, their smallest of the year. BYU overcame that deficit by opening the second half on a 20-3 run to take a 56-41 lead. The Cougars held Wyoming scoreless for almost seven minutes of the second half as the Cowboys were 1-for-14 from the field in the first 9:15 of the period. BYU also trailed at the half against Boise State, 44-36, but opened the second period with a 23-8 run, eventually winning 80-77.
-- BYU has outscored its opponents in the second half in 13 of 15 games this season, scoring an average of 6.6 more points than opponents in the second period of play.
-- The Cougars outrebounded Wyoming 43-38 on the night. The Cowboys came into the game leading the league and ranking 34th in the nation in rebounding margin (+5.7).
-- Wyoming head coach Steve McClain received a technical foul with 5:19 left in the second half, becoming the third opponent head coach this season to receive a technical foul (Billy Tubbs, Lamar, -- 2; Greg Graham, Boise State -- 1).
-- Freshman Lee Cummard, who finished with a career-high 13 points, surpassed his previous career high with 11 points on a jumper with 1:42 left in the first half, becoming the 10th Cougar to score in double figures this season. Cummard had tied his career high (nine points) on his third dunk of the season and the team's 20th at the 14:06 mark of the first half. Cummard added his fourth dunk (BYU's 22nd) just 1:27 into the second half. His first four points of the game came off of two steals in the first five minutes as he picked off Wyoming and put the ball in at the other end on the fast break.
- Austin Ainge scored a season-high 12 points against Wyoming, becoming the 11th Cougar to score in double figures this year. Only Jermaine Odjegba, who has seen limited action in five games this season, has not reached double-digits in the scoring column.
- Redshirt freshman Trent Plaisted recorded his 14th dunk of the year at the 10:41 mark of the first half and then added his 15th slam with 17:07 left in the second half, bringing BYU's total to 23. Plaisted has recorded a dunk in nine games this season. Keena Young added BYU's 24th dunk with 43 seconds left to play.
- Fernando Malaman's three-point scoring drought came to end at the 16:08 mark of the first half as he drained one from downtown. Malaman leads the Cougars in three-point percentage with a .524 mark (11-21) but had missed his last seven three-point shots prior to the make.
COUGARS IMPROVE ON LAST YEAR'S WIN TOTAL
With its win on Wednesday against Wyoming, BYU surpassed its win total from last year. The Cougars are currently 10-5 this season after suffering a 9-21 campaign last year to end five straight postseason appearances.
BYU has bounced back from each of its five losses this season with a victory, a trend the Cougars continued with their win against Wyoming on Wednesday. The Cougars have achieved three winning streaks this year -- two three-game streaks and one two-game streak.
MAGIC NUMBER: 70
BYU is 8-0 this season when holding opponents under 70 points and 2-5 when allowing opponents to surpass the 70-point threshold. Cougar foes are currently averaging 68.5 points per game. BYU is also 8-3 when scoring 70 or more points and 2-2 when falling below the 70-point mark. The Cougars lead in the league in scoring, averaging 76.7 ppg.
ON THE BOARDS
The Cougars pounded the boards against Wyoming, outrebounding the Cowboys 43-38 on the night. Wyoming came into the game leading the Mountain West Conference and ranking 34th in the nation with a +5.7 rebounding margin. The Cougars are 6-2 this season when outrebounding opponents and are second in the league in defensive rebounds (25.53).
Reserve center Derek Dawes did not play vs. Wyoming after being injured at UNLV but is probable to return on Saturday. Redshirting guard Sam Burgess has also not been able to practice while recovering from injury.
Overall this year, seven players have started while Coach Dave Rose has used four starting lineups. Junior Austin Ainge got his second start of the season and his first at point guard against Wyoming in place of Rashaun Broadus, who had started every game this season prior to being suspended against the Cowboys for violating team rules. Fernando Malaman and Trent Plaisted have started each game while Brock Reichner has started 14 games and Jimmy Balderson nine games. Lee Cummard has six starts, the last six games. The majority of BYU's starting line-ups have featured two freshmen (Plaisted and Cummard), two junior transfers (Broadus and Malaman) and one senior (Reichner). Reichner is the only one of the five to have started a Division I game prior to this season. He made two starts late last year in his first season at BYU. Five Cougars who started between seven and 23 games on last year's team (Austin Ainge, 23 starts; Jimmy Balderson, 16 starts; Keena Young, 15 starts, Derek Dawes, 13 starts; Mike Rose, 7 starts) have been coming off the bench.
BYU AMONG MWC LEADERS
BYU leads the MWC in scoring (76.7) and assists (17.1) and is second in scoring margin (+8.3), free throw percentage (.698), assist/turnover ratio (1.20), defensive rebounds (25.53) and three-pointers made (6.8). The Cougars rank third in field goal percentage (.475) and blocked shots (4.27). Individually, point guards Rashaun Broadus (4.6) and Austin Ainge (3.1) rank first and sixth, respectively, in assists and are first and third in assist/turnover ratio, with Ainge leading all MWC players with a 2.76 ratio, and Broadus recording a 1.68 mark. Keena Young and Fernando Malaman rank seventh and eighth, respectively, in field goal percentage at .565 and .562 while Trent Plaisted is ninth at .557. Plaisted is also 12th in scoring with 12.5 ppg. Young is tied for 11th in rebounding average (5.6), and Malaman is fourth in blocked shots (1.4).
BYU REDSHIRTS: SAM BURGESS, VUK IVANOVIC
Junior guard Sam Burgess is redshirting this season. The 6-foot-3 guard from Alpine, Utah, is one of nine juniors on the roster this year. Fellow junior Vuk Ivanovic will also redshirt while he sits out the season due to NCAA transfer rules.
TRANSFERRED: DAVID BURGESS
David Burgess, a 6-foot-10 redshirt freshman center, announced on Dec. 15 that he was transferring from BYU to complete his eligibility. BYU granted his request for a release. Burgess appeared in three of seven games this year, averaging 0.7 points and 1.7 rebounds. Said Burgess, "I thoroughly enjoyed my time at BYU and I think Coach Rose is an unbelievable coach but his system just isn't a good fit for me personally. When I signed, Coach Cleveland's system was a half-court offense, which fits me better as a player. I was excited for Coach Rose to be named the coach and I worked hard to lose some weight and try to prepare myself for his system but it's just not the best fit for me." Burgess has since announced he will transfer to Gonzaga.
SCORING FOR THE COUGARS
BYU is averaging an MWC-leading 76.5 ppg led by redshirt freshman Trent Plaisted's 12.5 points per game. Six different Cougars have led the team in scoring in BYU's first 15 games. Plaisted has led BYU six times (20 at USC, 13 vs. Southern Utah, 19 vs. Boise State, 15 vs. Weber State, 16 vs. Tulsa and 17 vs. Wyoming), and junior Keena Young has led the team three times (12 vs. Northern Kentucky, 15 vs. Eastern Washington and 16 at Air Force) while senior Brock Reichner (18 at Washington State and 26 at Utah State) and junior Jimmy Balderson (18 vs. Loyola Marymount and 21 vs. Lamar) have each led BYU twice and juniors Rashaun Broadus (17 vs. Utah) and Fernando Malaman (13 at UNLV) have led the Cougars once. 11 different Cougars have had a double-digit scoring outing for BYU this year (all except Jermaine Odjegba, high of 2).
With its win against Wyoming, BYU is now 8-0 when leading at the half and 2-5 when trailing. The Cougars' average halftime lead is 11.8 points, and they have led by double digits six times. BYU has also been impressive in the second half this season. The Cougars have outscored their opponents in the second period of play in all but two games this year (42-41 vs. Loyola Marymount, 45-42 at UNLV). BYU averages 6.6 more second-half points than its opponents.
BYU AT THE POINT
BYU's Rashaun Broadus (4.6 apg) and Austin Ainge (3.1 apg) rank first and sixth, respectively, among Mountain West Conference players in assists per game this season while helping the Cougars lead the MWC in team assists at 17.1 apg. Broadus and Ainge have combined for 74 assists compared to 32 turnovers in BYU's 10 wins while totaling 37 assists and 23 turnovers in the Cougars' five defeats. Broadus has 43 assists and 22 turnovers in the wins with 21 assists and 16 turnovers in the losses. Ainge boasts 31 assists to only 10 turnovers in the victories while totaling 16 assists and 7 turnovers in defeats. With his overall 47 assists to 17 turnovers, Ainge easily leads all MWC players in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.76), while Broadus ranks third (1.68). In BYU's season-opening loss to Loyola Marymount the two guards combined for six assists and five turnovers, and in the loss at USC they totaled seven assists and five turnovers. Broadus and Ainge showed marked improvement in the Cougars' win at Washington State, where the two combined to dish out 10 assists while committing only two turnovers, as each posted a line of a game-high 5 assists with only one turnover. In BYU's victory over Southern Utah, they combined for 13 assists with only one turnover, as Ainge tied a career high with 8 assists without a turnover and Broadus had 3 assists and one turnover while scoring 11 points. Against Lamar, Broadus dished out a career-best 9 assists, including an assist on BYU's first six baskets, while Ainge added two assists to help BYU achieve 22 assists for the second straight game. Broadus recorded a team-high 6 assists against Boise State and the two points combined for 7 assists (4 Ainge, 3 Broadus) and only 1 turnover (Broadus) vs. Northern Kentucky and 7 assists (4 Ainge, 3 Broadus) and only 2 turnovers vs. Weber State. Ainge had 7 assists without a turnover at USU while Broadus had 8 assists and 4 turnovers while scoring a career-best 21 points. Broadus tied a career-best 9 assists while Ainge added 4 to fuel BYU to a season-high 29 assists vs. Eastern Washington. In conference play, Ainge has 7 assists and 6 turnovers while Broadus has eight assists and 10 turnovers. As a team, BYU has made an assist on 61.5 percent of its field goals this season.
BYU IN THE POST
BYU's post players are all efficient from the floor. Starters Fernando Malaman, who has made 56.3 percent (54-of-96) of his shots, and Trent Plaisted, who has converted 55.7 percent (68-of-122) of his attempts, rank eighth and ninth, respectively, among MWC players in field goal percentage. Off the bench, Keena Young is shooting a team-best .565 (48-of-85), seventh in the league, and Derek Dawes is making .486 (17-of-35). Malaman's numbers are perhaps the most impressive to date, considering the 6-foot-9 Brazilian transfer is scoring from all over the floor, including a team-leading 52.2 percent success rate (12-of-23) from behind the three-point arc.
BYU ON THE WING
Senior Brock Reichner has started the last 14 games at 2-guard and is second on the team in scoring at 10.0 ppg, including a team-high 22 threes, while junior Jimmy Balderson started the first nine games at small forward and is sixth in scoring at 7.7 ppg, with 10 treys. BYU's two freshman wings are playing significant roles. Lee Cummard has started in place of Balderson the last six games and is averaging 6.3 points in 15.5 minutes while shooting 48 percent from the floor. Cummard scored a career-high 13 points against Wyoming. Jackson Emery is shooting 42 percent from the floor and has made eight triples while averaging 3.3 points in 10.3 minutes. He has also been a solid defender for the Cougars, often helping guard the opponent's top perimeter player. Junior Mike Rose plays 10.4 minutes in the rotation on the wing, averaging 4.4 points, including 17 treys.
BYU's 76.7 points per game are coming in a variety of ways as the Cougars outscore their opponents in every statistical category on the season. BYU has scored 63 more points in the paint this season, outpacing its opponents underneath in eight games, tying in two and being outscored in five. The Cougars have also capitalized on opponent miscues in their 15 games to date, scoring 38 more points off of turnovers while outscoring foes in that category in eight games, tying in one and being outscored in six. BYU enjoys a 38-point advantage in second-chance points, partly due to the Cougars' +2.4 rebounding margin, as BYU has outscored opponents in that category in nine games. The Cougars' largest advantage, however, comes on the fast break as BYU has only been outscored on the break in three games this year, with a 164-88 margin.
BYU BASKETBALL ON KSL NEWSRADIO (102.7 FM and 1160 AM)
The "Voice of the Cougars" is KSL Newsradio 1160's Greg Wrubell. He is in his 10th season as the play-by-play voice of BYU basketball. Wrubell, also the voice of BYU football, is joined by former Cougar lettermen Mark Durrant and Russell Larson (for select broadcasts) as color analysts. Durrant has been part of the KSL broadcast team for nine years while Larson is in his first season as an analyst. In addition to live coverage of every Cougar game, the following programs can be heard each week on KSL Newsradio.
COACH ROSE ON KSL NEWSRADIO ...
-- Coach's Corner with Dave Rose
Mondays at 8:45 a.m.
-- The Dave Rose Show
Mondays from 7-8 p.m.