10 seed BYU takes on 7th-seeded Kansas in Big 12 Championship Second Round

The Cougars look to avenge two regular season losses as they face the 7th-seeded Kansas Jayhawks in the second round of the Big 12 Women’s Basketball Championship on Friday at 5:30 p.m. CT at the T-Mobile Center.

Big 12 ChampionshipBig 12 Championship

PROVO, Utah — The Cougars look to avenge two regular season losses as they face the 7th-seeded Kansas Jayhawks in the second round of the Big 12 Women’s Basketball Championship on Friday at 5:30 p.m. CT at the T-Mobile Center.

Matchup Breakdown

The only two meetings between BYU and Kansas came in Big 12 play this season with the Cougars going 0-2 against the Jayhawks. The most recent meeting came at the Marriott Center on February 17, 2024, with KU taking home a 70-64 win.

All-Time: 0-2

In Provo: 0-1

In Lawrence: 0-1

At Neutral Site: 0-0

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BYU Cougars (16-15, 6-12 Big 12 Conference)

THE FINAL RIDE FOR A BYU ALL-TIME GREAT: Lauren Gustin’s career accolades are well documented as she has become the program’s all-time leading rebounder and holds the fourth-highest mark for career rebounds in the NCAA with 1,666 rebounds and counting. The senior earned her fourth all-conference honor this week as Gustin was named to the All-Big 12 First Team.

This season, Gustin leads the nation in total rebounds (476), rebounding average (15.4), defensive rebounds per game (10.3), double-doubles (29) and is 2nd in offensive rebounds per contest (5.1). Gustin also leads the Cougars in scoring at 17.3 points per game on 51.7 percent shooting from the field and minutes played at 36.8.

THREE-POINT MARKSMAN: Kailey Woolston burst onto the scene earning Big 12 Freshman of the Week honors twice (Nov. 20 & 27) in the early weeks of the season. She was named All-Big 12 Honorable Mention this week.

Woolston leads the conference and is 3rd nationally in 3-point percentage at 45.6 percent, 2nd in the conference and 18th nationally in 3-point field goals made (78) and 2nd in the conference, 32nd nationally in three-pointers per game (2.52).

THE STARTING GUARD LINE IS CRUCIAL: BYU’s starting guard line is the silver bullet for the team’s success. As the guard line goes, the Cougars go. In BYU’s 16 wins this season, the starting guard line of Amari Whiting, Kailey Woolston and Kaylee Smiler combine for 34.4 points, 12.8 rebounds, 10.4 assists, 4.1 steals and 1.7 blocks.

In the 12 losses, the Cougar guard line’s stat line decreases in every category as the three combine for just 27.3 points (-7.1), 8.4 rebounds (-4.4), 9.5 assists (-0.9), 3.1 steals (-0.2), 1.4 blocks (-0.4).

MAGIC NUMBER...66 POINTS OR LESS: Coach Whiting prides her team on their ability to defend. Her defense has held opponents to 65.4 points per game this season and 16 of its 31 opponents to 66 or fewer points. When holding teams under the 66-point threshold, BYU is 15-1. When surrendering over 66 points, the Cougars are 1-13 on the year.

TURNOVER TROUBLE: Ball security is key to the Cougars’ success, however, BYU averages 17 turnovers per game this season. The Cougs have turned the ball over more than their opponent in all but six games this season and hold a 25-27 record when posting a negative turnover margin under Whiting. In Big 12 play, the Cougars turnover the rock 15.7 times per game and have given up 17.6 points off turnovers per contest.

Head Coach – Amber Whiting

  • Alma Mater: BYU, 2001
  • Division I Career Record: 32-32 (2nd Season)
  • Record at BYU:  32-32 (2nd Season)

Kansas Jayhawks (18-11, 11-7 Big 12 Conference)

ALL-BIG 12 AWARDS GALORE:  Four Kansas players were honored when the conference released its 2023-24 All-Big 12 Awards on Tuesday.

Taiyanna Jackson and S’Mya Nichols were named to the All-Big 12 First Team while Jackson was also named to the Big 12 All-Defensive Team for the third-consecutive season. Nichols was a unanimous selection to the Big 12 All-Freshman Team. 

Zakiyah Franklin and Holly Kersgieter were each named All-Big 12 Honorable Mention. Franklin picked up the fourth All-Big 12 honor of her career after earning All-Big 12 First Team in 2023, Honorable Mention in 2022 and the All-Freshman Team in 2020. Kersgieter was an All-Big 12 selection for the fourth-straight season after previously earning Honorable Mention in 2021 and 2023, and an All-Big 12 First Team selection in 2022.

BALANCED OFFENSIVE ATTACK FOR KU: The Jayhawks had five players average 11 or more points against BYU in the two regular-season meetings, but the other four players that saw the floor combined for just 7.0 points.

Holly Kersgieter, the all-time leader in three-point field goal makes at Kansas, didn’t play in the first meeting at Allen Fieldhouse, but scored 16 points against the Cougars in Provo to go along with seven rebounds and an assist. Wyvette Mayberry averaged 15.0 points in the two games against BYU, scoring 19 points in the second meeting in Provo. Mayberry also recorded a team-high 2.5 assists and 3.0 steals per game against the Cougars. Zakiyah Franklin finished with 14.0 per game including a Jayhawk-high 24 points in the win over BYU in Provo. 

Taiyanna Jackson averaged 13.5 points in two games, but 25 of her 27 came in the first meeting at the Phog as the Cougars held Jackson to just two points on 1-for-2 shooting. S’Mya Nichols is the final double-digit scorer for Kansas at 11.0 points per game.

ACTIVE HANDS AND SCORING AT WILL: The Jayhawks forced 26 turnovers in the two wins over BYU and scored 30 points off turnovers. The Cougars turn it over 15.7 times per game in conference play while opponents score 17.6 points off BYU's turnovers.  

Head Coach – Brandon Schneider

  • Alma Mater: Wayland Baptist, 1995
  • Division I Career Record: 526-285 (26th Season)
  • Record at Kansas: 125-147 (9th Season)

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