GAME 15 - BYU Plays at Wake Forest Tuesday
BYU GAME #15 FAST FACTS
BYU COUGARS (11-3)
WAKE FOREST DEMON DEACONS (10-3)
Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2008
Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum (14,665)
7 p.m. ET
BYU, Dave Rose (56-21 in third season; same overall)
WF, Dino Gaudio (10-3 in first season; 78-127 in eight years overall)
Wake Forest leads, 2-1, including a 108-93 victory in the last meeting on Dec. 30, 1969
Online ACCSelect broadcast
KSL Newsradio (102.7 FM/1160 AM) and the CougarÃ¢â‚¬Ë†Sports Network 6 p.m. ET pregame show -- Greg Wrubell, play-by-play; Andy Toolson, game analyst)
Live audio and live stats links are available on the basketball schedule page at www.byucougars.com
BYU PLAYS AT WAKE FOREST TUESDAY
BYU will head to ACC country to play at Wake Forest on Tuesday in the first meeting between the two teams since 1969. The Cougars (11-3) and Demon Deacons (10-3) will tip off at 7 p.m. ET (5 p.m. MT) as BYU attempts to become the first team to defeat Wake Forest at Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum this year. Tuesday's game will be broadcast online via ACCSelect. The radio broadcast can be heard on KSL Newsradio 102.7 FM and 1160 AM out of Salt Lake City and on the Internet at KSL.com beginning with the pregame show at 6 p.m. ET (4 p.m. MT).
BYU will open conference play on Saturday, Jan. 12 hosting Colorado State at 4 p.m. in the Marriott Center. The game will be televised on The Mtn. Fans who purchase two tickets to the game will receive two tickets of equal or lesser value to the BYU vs. SDSU game on Wed. Jan 23 or the BYU vs. TCU contest on Wed. Feb. 6.
COUGAR QUICK HITS
-- BYU currently owns the nation's second-longest active home win streak 39 straight wins in the Marriott Center, one victory behind Memphis. The Cougars went 17-0 at home last year and are 8-0 at home this year.
-- After five straight weeks in the top-25 polls, BYU dropped out of both polls in the Dec. 31 rankings after a 73-70 loss at Boise State. The Cougars' entrance into the national rankings on Nov. 26 marked the program's earliest appearance in the national polls since the 1980-81 season. With a ranking as high as No. 21 last year, BYU has now been ranked in back-to-back season for the first time since 1980-81 and 1981-82.
-- Two-time reigning MWCÃ¢â‚¬Ë†Coach of the Year Dave Rose helped make BYU the second-most improved program in the nation in his first season with a 20-9 record and guided the Cougars to the outright MWCÃ¢â‚¬Ë†title and a top-25 ranking in his second campaign in Provo as the Cougars went 25-9 last season.
-- BYU has been picked in the preseason poll to finish first in the MWC race this year by the league's media.
-- This year's BYU squad returns two starters among seven lettermen from last year's outright league leaders (13-3 MWC record) as well as returned missionary Chris Miles, who made six starts as a freshman in 2004-05. Headlining BYU's top returners in 2007-08 are MWC Player of the Year candidate Trent Plaisted, a two-time All-MWC Second Team selection in his first two seasons; versatile junior guard Lee Cummard, who earned All-MWC Third Team honors one year ago; and sophomore sharpshooter Jonathan Tavernari, who followed Plaisted's lead the prior season by being named the MWC Freshman of the Year in his first campaign as a Cougar.
BYU PROBABLE STARTERS
POS. # NAME HT. WT. YR. HOMETOWN / LAST TEAM PPG RPG
F 41 Chris Collinsworth 6-9 205 Fr. Provo, Utah / Provo HS 2.9 4.5
F/C 44 Trent Plaisted 6-11 245 Jr. San Antonio, Texas / Clark HS 16.6 9.5
G 30 Lee Cummard 6-7 185 Jr. Mesa, Ariz. / Mesa HS 16.1 6.1
G 20 Sam Burgess 6-3 190 Sr. Alpine, Utah / Snow College 9.5 3.2
G 24 Ben Murdock 6-2 185 Sr. Bountiful, Utah / Dixie State College 4.6 2.3
WAKE FOREST'S PROBABLE STARTERS (BASED ON LAST GAME)
Pos. # Name Ht. Wt. Yr. PPG RPG Hometown
G 00 Jeff Teague 6-2 175 Fr. 9.8 2.8 Indianapolis, Ind.
G 10 Ishmael Smith 6-0 165 So. 7.7 3.9 Concord, N.C.
G 42 L.D. Williams 6-4 205 So. 10.9 4.9 Yadkinville, N.C.
F 23 James Johnson 6-8 235 Fr. 13.5 8.7 Cheyenne, Wyo.
F 44 David Weaver 6-10 240 So. 1.7 2.4 Black Mountain, N.C.
LOOKING AT WAKE FOREST
The Demon Deacons are off to a 10-3 start this season having won their last five games, including a 78-67 victory over Air Force. Wake Forest is also 9-0 at home this year. The Demon Deacons return four starters among 10 letterwinners from last year's team that finished 15-16 under head coach Skip Prosser, who passed away during the offseason. Freshman forward James Johnson leads the team in both scoring and rebounding with 13.5 points per game and 8.7 rebounds per contest. The Cheyenne, Wyo., native shoots 45.9 percent from the field and has posted 18 blocks on the year. Sophomore guard L.D. Williams is second for the Demon Deacons in scoring (10.9) and rebounding (4.9) while shooting 46.3 percent from the field, also second on the team. Junior guard Harvey Hale has started seven games this year and rounds out the Demon Deacon double-figure scorers with 10.3 points per game. Sophomore guard Ishmael Smith, who has started every game this season along with Johnson and Williams, dishes out 4.5 assists per contest while adding 7.7 points and 3.9 rebounds per game. As a team, the Demon Deacons are averaging 70.8 points per game on 41.8 percent shooting from the field. Wake Forest opponents are averaging 61.6 points per contest on 39.8 percent shooting from the floor. The Demon Deacons outrebound their opponents 38.2-36.5 on the year.
WAKE FOREST'S LASTÃ¢â‚¬Ë†OUTING -- WAKE FOREST DOWNS PRESBYTERIAN, 70-58
WINSTON-SALEM -- James Johnson scored a game-high 18 points as Wake Forest fended off stubborn Presbyterian for a 70-58 win on Wednesday night. L.D. Williams and Jeff Teague each added 14 points for the Demon Deacons (10-3), who posted their Atlantic Coast Conference-best 13th straight home court win despite trailing the underdog Blue Hose by a point early in the second half. Ishmael Smith handed out a season-high 11 assists. Al'Lonzo Coleman scored 12 of his 16 points in the second half to lead Presbyterian (1-17), which suffered its ninth straight loss. Bryan Bostic added 13 and Ryan Lamb 12 for the Blue Hose, who are in their first season of NCAA Division I competition. After clinging to a two-point halftime lead and trailing briefly in the early stages of the second half, Wake Forest took charge for keeps with just under 10 minutes left. Johnson's three-point play with 9:41 remaining gave the Demon Deacons a 50-47 lead, and L.D. Williams followed with driving dunks on Wake Forest's next two possessions. Jeff Teague's 3-point shot capped the 10-0 spurt and put the Demon Deacons in front 57-47 with 8:15 to play. The Demon Deacons grabbed the upper hand early by scoring 16 unanswered points en route to a 22-6 lead. The Blue Hose fueled the run by missing five shots -- all from 3-point range -- and committing five turnovers. But Wake Forest's fast start couldn't keep Presbyterian down. The Demon Deacons failed to score on seven straight possessions, and the Blue Hose got back into the game with a 15-4 run. Bostic's transition layup that just beat the buzzer left Presbyterian trailing 31-29 at the half. Bostic scored 13 first-half points to lead the Blue Hose, including three shots from 3-point range. James Johnson scored 13 to lead Wake Forest. The Demon Deacons played the first half without 7-foot center Chas McFarland, who entered the game with 18:05 remaining and contributed seven points and six rebounds down the stretch. Wake Forest shot 52 percent from the floor and committed just eight turnovers. Presbyterian shot 42 percent, including 10-of-30 from 3-point range. The teams finished even in rebounding with 29 apiece.
Tuesday's game marks the first meeting between BYU and Wake Forest since Dec. 30, 1969, a 108-93 Demon Deacon win at the Quaker City Invitational. Wake Forest leads the overall series, 2-1, including a 1-0 record in Winston-Salem, N.C. The series began with an 84-58 BYU victory at the 1952 Dixie Classic before the Demon Deacons responded with an 86-80 home win in 1955. The Cougars have scored at least 80 points in all three meetings.
BYU SERIES RECORD VS. WAKE FOREST
Overall Series Record: Wake Forest leads 2-1
BYU Record in Provo: N/A
BYU Record at Wake Forest: 0-1
BYU Record at Neutral Sites: 1-1
BYU Record Under Dave Rose: 0-0
BYU Record in Overtime Games: N/A
Longest BYU Win Streak: 1 (1952-55)
Longest Wake Forest Win Streak: 2 (1955-present)
Largest BYU Margin of Victory: 26, 84-58 in 1952
Largest WF Margin of Victory: 15, 108-93 in 1969
Most Points Scored by BYU: 93 in 1969
Most Points Scored by Wake Forest: 108 in 1969
12-30-52 vs. Wake Forest* 84-58 W
12-22-55 at Wake Forest 80-86 L
12-30-69 vs. Wake Forest# 93-108 L
#Quaker City Invitational
VS. THE ACC
Wake Forest will be the second ACC team BYU will face this season, including a 73-63 loss to No. 1 North Carolina at the Las Vegas Invitational on Nov. 24. The Cougars also played two ACC teams in 2004-05, a neutral court loss to UNC and a home setback to N.C. State, for the first time in nearly 50 years. Prior to that, the last time BYU had a schedule with two ACC teams was the 1955-56 season when the Cougars played at both NC State and Wake Forest. BYU's last victory against an ACC school was an NCAA Tournament triumph, 61-48, over Virginia on March 14, 1991 in Salt Lake City. BYU lost in the next round to Arizona, 76-61, to finish the year with a 21-13 record. The only ACC school BYU has never played is Maryland.
BYU RECORD VS. THE ACC
*home wins were against Miami prior to its joining ACC
Georgia Tech 0-1
Florida State 1-0
NC State 0-4
North Carolina 0-5
Virginia Tech 1-0
Wake Forest 1-2
BYU'S LAST OUTING -- BARRAGE OF THREES HELPS BYU TO VICTORY
PROVO -- BYU junior forward Lee Cummard led the Cougars to their 11th victory of the season Thursday night as BYU came out on top of the visiting Loyola Marymount 91-62 thanks in part to 18 points from Cummard. The Cougars are now 11-3 on the year while the Lions dropped to 3-12. The Cougars tied an all-time BYU record as they attempted 33 three-pointers and hit 12 of them. The leading man from beyond the arc was Jonathan Tavernari, who hit on five of his 10 attempts to help him finish with 17 points off the bench. The Cougars saw contributions from every player who checked in as 12 BYU players made it into the scoring column. BYU was able to get out to a quick start as Cougar center Trent Plaisted was double teamed just outside the paint and found the wide-open Chris Collinsworth, who laid in it for the first points of the game. Plaisted not only dished out three helpers on the night but also continued his streak of reaching double-digit scoring in all 14 games this season as he finished with 12 points. The Cougars continued to build upon their quick start as they started the game off with a 12-4 run in the first 4:44. This early BYU run was highlighted by Cougar guard Ben Murdock, who hit his first two attempts from beyond the arc. Loyola came back with an impressive run of its own to echo the Cougars' early success. The Lions tightened up the game with a 9-2 run to close the gap to 14-13 with 11:19 left in the first half. But an alley-oop dunk by Cummard from Jimmer Fredette at the 10:59 mark of the first half sparked the crowd and also proved to ignite the Cougars as they rattled off 12 more points in the next 1:48 to extend their lead to 26-17. Cummard finished the first half as the leading scorer for BYU as he hit on 4-for-6 from the field to record 12 points before the break. The Cougars went into the locker room up nine, 35-26. Just over six minutes into the second half, BYU opened up a 49-31 lead; the 18-point advantage was the largest Cougar margin to that point. BYU hit four three-pointers to help reach the lead, including three from Sam Burgess. Orlando Johnson hit a three-pointer with 11:02 left in the game to close the gap to 51-37. Johnson came into the game averaging 12.6 points an outing and finished the game with a team-high 19 points against the Cougars. With 8:41 left in the game BYU opened up a 67-38 lead on two consecutive trips down the court that saw Tavernari hit three-pointers. These Tavernari threes capped off a 16-1 BYU run over a 2:21 span. The Cougars continued to build upon their lead throughout the remainder of the game. Another play that caused an eruption in the Marriott Center came with 5:40 left as Chris Miles slammed home a Fredette three-point miss. The dunk brought the crowd of over 10,000 to their feet. After only forcing five turnovers in the first half, BYU was able to create 14 Lion turnovers in the second half. The Cougars' defense kept Loyola to 31 percent shooting from the field.
WHAT WAS SAID AFTER THE GAME ...
BYU Head Coach Dave Rose
-- "I was pleased with two things tonight. I thought we shared the ball well. We got 21 assists and had opportunities for a lot more with good shots that we didn't convert. Defensively, the intensity was a lot more consistent throughout the game than we had the other night against Boise State."
-- "I just wanted to make sure we were getting the best shots we could. We played a little conservative until we broke it open in the second half. Then the guys loosened up a little, and we played even better."
-- "I am pleased with the win tonight. We have three or four players that were here when they beat us here last time. It is something we discussed before the game but not something we dwelled upon."
LMU Head Coach Rodney Tention
-- "The better team by far won tonight. BYU is a great team, and we give them a lot of credit."
-- "I thought we got better for about 25 minutes, but we couldn't maintain it. A team like BYU is going to take advantage of you when you make mistakes... I don't see any reason why they're not a top 25 team."
-- "I think in the first half we really competed because we took care of the ball. We executed well in the first half as well, but the game is 40 minutes long and we need to figure out a way to sustain ourselves the entire game."
BYU NOTES FROM LAST OUTING
-- Individual Career Highs: Nick Martineau -- 6 points; 4 assists.
-- Team Season Highs: Three-point field goals attempted -- 33 (tied program record).
-- With the win, BYU improved its Marriott Center win streak to 39 games, tied for the longest active home court victory streak in the nation.
-- With the 29-point win, BYU is now outscoring its opponents by 16.5 points on the year. That margin jumps to 22.7 points in the Cougars' 11 wins.
-- With the 91-62 win, BYU is now 11-1 when scoring at least 70 points in a game and 8-1 when holding opponents under the 70-point mark. The Cougars are also 6-0 when scoring at least 80 points.
-- Including a game-high lead of 34 points against the Lions, the Cougars have posted a double-digit lead in 13 of 14 games and have led by more than 20 points in nine games and more than 30 points in three contests. The lone exception to the double-digit leads came against No. 1 North Carolina when the game-high BYU lead was two points.
-- Including 12 three-point makes against Loyola Marymount, BYU has made double-digit treys in four games this year. The Cougars have made at least six threes in every games this season except against SUU when they made five. With (120) makes from long range already this year and at least 18 games left to play, BYU is on pace to break the single-season three-point record the Cougars set last year with 256.
-- The Cougars tied the program record with 33 three-point attempts against Loyola Marymount. BYU also shot 33 three-pointers at UNLV in 1998 and against Louisiana State in 1992.
-- With 12 points against Loyola Marymount, Plaisted remains the only Cougar to score in double figures in every game this season. Cummard has posted double-digit points in 12 of 14 games.
-- With a 35-26 halftime lead against Loyola Marymount, the Cougars have now led at halftime in 13 of 14 games this year, including 10 double-digit leads. The Cougars are now 11-2 when holding a halftime advantage while outscoring opponents by an average of 12.2 points in the first half.
-- BYU has held all 14 of its opponents this year under 40 points in the first half while holding foes under 30 points in the first period of 10 games. BYU has scored at least 30 first-half points in every game this season.
-- Cummard scored in double figures for the 12th time this season and the 28th time in his career with a game-high 12 points in the first half. Cummard finished the game with 18 points.
-- With a 4-for-4 performance from the free-throw line, Cummard improved his efficiency from the charity stripe to 89.7 percent (35-of-39) on the year. Cummard has been perfect from the line in seven of the 10 games in which he has attempted free throws.
COUGARS BY THE NUMBERS
3 Number of top-10 teams BYU has played this season -- No. 1 North Carolina, then-No. 6 Louisville and then-No. 9 Michigan State. The Cougars beat the Cardinals, 78-76, before falling, 73-63, to the Tarheels despite battling UNC through six second-half lead changes. BYU held a double-digit halftime lead against the Spartans before losing, 68-61.
4 Number of games in which BYU has scored at least 90 points, tying last year's total for the most since 1995-96. The Cougars currently lead the Mountain West Conference in scoring at 79.9 points per game.
7 Number of games in which Lee Cummard has been perfect from the free-throw line out of 10 games in which he taken free throws. Cummard has made his last 12 straight free throws and had made 19 straight prior to a miss against Southern Utah.
7 Number of statistical categories in which Lee Cummard ranks among the top 10 in the MWC including field-goal percentage (1st - .609), free-throw percentage (2nd - .897), scoring (3rd - 16.1), offensive rebounds (5th - 2.14), total rebounds (7th - 6.1), assists (7th - 3.57) and blocked shots (9th, 0.93).
T7th Rank in BYU program history of Jonathan Tavernari's 12-game streak with a made three-pointer to start the season.
9 Number of statistical categories in which a BYU player ranks among the top three in the MWC out of the 12 categories tracked by the league.
9 Number of points Trent Plaisted needs to surpass Keena Young, last year's Mountain West Conference Player of the Year, on BYU's all-time career scoring list. Plaisted currently has 1,060 career points.
10 Number of times this season BYU has held its opponents under 30 points in the first half. The Cougars have scored at least 30 first-half points in every games this season while racking up halftime leads in 13 of 14 games, including 10 by double digits.
13 Number of games this season Lee Cummard and Jonathan Tavernari have each made a three-pointer. Sam Burgess has made a trey in 11 of 14 games this year.
13 Number of games in which BYU has led by double digits. The Cougars have also led by at least 20 points in nine contests and 30 points in three. BYU has led wire-to-wire in six games this year.
14 Number of starts made this season by Sam Burgess after the senior made just one start in his two prior seasons as a Cougar. Fellow senior Ben Murdock has also started all 14 games after not starting last year in his first season in Provo.
15 Trent Plaisted's longest career streak of consecutive double-figures scoring games, achieved during his freshman season in 2005-06. Plaisted has scored in double figures in all 14 of BYU's games this season.
22.7 The Cougars' average margin of victory in their 11 wins this season. BYU has won seven games by more than 20 points, including two by more than 30. The Cougars' 40-point win at Long Beach State to begin the year was BYU's largest margin of victory over a Division I opponent since defeating Morgan State by 41 points (110-69) on Dec. 28, 1995.
38-4 Combined record of the three teams BYU has lost to this season - North Carolina (14-0), Michigan State (13-1) and Boise State (11-3) (as of Jan. 5).
56 Number of wins Dave Rose has recorded in his 2+ seasons as a head coach, going 56-21 for a 72.7 winning percentage and winning back-to-back Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year honors in his first two years.
76.2 BYU's free-throw shooting percentage this season with under five minutes to play.
DEFENDING THE HOME COURT
With 39 straight wins in the Marriott Center, the Cougars currently own the nation's second-longest active home victory streak, just one win behind No. 2 Memphis. The Cougars are 8-0 at home this year and won 17 home games last season after going 14-1 at home in 2005-06. BYU's last home loss was in the 2005-06 season opener against Loyola Marymount. BYUÃ¢â‚¬Ë†has since won 23 straight over nonconference opponents and 16 consecutive over MWC foes since losing its season finale in 2005 to UNLV. BYUÃ¢â‚¬Ë†is 410-116 (.779) all-time in the Marriott Center. The Cougars' longest home winning streak came from Feb 19, 2000 to Jan 16, 2003 when BYU won 44 straight in the Marriott Center.
Active Homecourt Winning Streaks (As of Jan. 6, 2008)
Wins Team This year Next home game
40 Memphis 8-0 Jan. 9 vs. East Carolina
39 BYU 8-0 Jan. 12 vs. Colorado State
ON THE ROAD
The Cougars are 2-1 in true road games this year. With a 1-2 record on neutral courts, BYU is 3-3 this season away from home. BYU won five of its last seven games on the road last season including a win at then-No. 20 Air Force (62-58), snapping the Falcons' 30-game home winning streak. BYU was 6-7 on the road last year and 5-3 in conference play, becoming the only Mountain West Conference team with a winning record on the road in league play last year.
MAGIC NUMBER: 70
BYU is 11-1 when scoring at least 70 points this season and 9-1 when holding opponents under the 70-point mark while averaging 79.9 points and allowing just 63.4 ppg. The Cougars have scored 90 or more points in four games this season, reaching 100 against Jackson State, and are 6-0 when scoring over 80 points on the year. Overall, BYU leads the Mountain West Conference in scoring and scoring margin (+16.4)
CLEANING THE GLASS
BYU has won the battle of the boards in 11 of 14 games this year with the only deficits coming against No. 6 Louisville (39-37), No. 9 Michigan State (37-29) and Boise State (36-34). BYU is besting opponents by an average of 7.2 boards per contest. The Cougars posted a season-high +19 rebounding margin (38-19) against Hartford as four Cougars pulled down at least five rebounds. BYU began the season with a 55-40 rebounding advantage at Long Beach State, matching last year's season high of 55 boards against Seton Hall. Five Cougars posted at least six rebounds in BYU's win over Lamar, marking the first time since Jan. 8, 2005 that feat has been done.
BYU has had five players score in double figures in a game three times this season, already matching last year's total of three games in which at least five players reached double digits. Four different Cougars have led the team in scoring this year with Lee Cummard pacing BYU a team-best seven times. Team-high rebounding honors have been shared by four players and team-best assist accolades by five.
CRUNCHING CUMMARD'S NUMBERS
Lee Cummard has scored 20 or more points four times this season, including three of the last five games. He is averaging 20.8 points, 7.0 rebounds, 5.2 assists, 2.0 blocks and 1.6 steals over the last five games while shooting 63.9 percent (39-of-61) from the floor, 47.8 percent (11-for-23) on threes and .938 percent (15-for-16) at the line. He has made 73.7 percent (28-for-38) of his two-point attempts over the five-game stretch.
-- In his last road outing, Cummard led BYU with a game-high 26 points at Boise State on Dec. 29 on .643 shooting from the floor (9-for-14) and a perfect 6-for-6 night at the free-throw line. He added six rebounds, two assists and a game-best two blocked shots. Defensively, he held BSU senior swingman Tyler Tiedeman well below his season averages. Tiedeman came in averaging 11.9 points on 48.8 percent shooting from the floor and a team-best 45.1 percent from behind the arc. Cummard held him to only five points on 2-for-9 shooting in 33 minutes.
-- In his last home outing, Cummard filled the stat sheet vs. Loyola Marymount with a team-high 18 points, six rebounds, three assists and one block. Five of his six boards came on the offensive glass as BYU posted a 21-11 margin in second-chance points.
After setting a program record with 256 three-pointers last season, the Cougars are on pace to break that record this year having already made 120 treys so far. BYU has posted double-digit triples in a game four times this year with 12 against Loyola Marymount, 11 against Lamar, 12 at Long Beach State and 13 vs. Hartford, marking just the sixth time in program history that the Cougars have posted at least 13 threes in a game, including a record 15 against UNLV last season. The Cougars have made at least six three-pointers in every game this season except vs. SUU when they made five. The Cougars tied the program record with 33 three-point attempts against Loyola Marymount. Individually, both Lee Cummard and Jonathan Tavernari have made a three-pointer in 13 of 14 games this season while Sam Burgess has done so in 11 of 14 contests. Cummard is currently riding an eight-game streak with a make from long range while Tavernari's 12-game streak to begin the year is tied for seventh all-time in BYU history.
BURGESS COMIN' UP BIG
Senior co-captain Sam Burgess is making the most of his final BYU campaign as he is fourth on the team in scoring (9.5), third in field-goal shooting among players with at least 30 attempts (.473) and third in assists (2.4) while leading the team in three-point shooting (.481). He has increased his scoring total from last season by 5.9 ppg while averaging 16.2 more minutes per game. His six double-figure scoring games this year has already surpassed last year's mark of four double-digit scoring outings. Burgess has started all 14 games this season after starting just one game in his two prior seasons as a Cougar.
Four Cougar freshman are making an impact this year as Chris Collinsworth, Jimmer Fredette, Michael Loyd, Jr. and Nick Martineau have made their respective BYU debuts with results that bode well for the future. All four saw their first action in the Cougars' season opener at Long Beach State and have continued to make a difference for BYU. Collinsworth and Fredette are both averaging over 16 minutes per game at 16.8 and 16.4 mpg, respectively, while Loyd is posting 8.9 and Martineau has seen an average of 7.4 minutes of action per contest. Fredette is fifth on the team in scoring with 6.5 ppg while tying for second with 18 steals. Collinsworth is fourth for BYU with 4.5 rebounds per game and has started the last five contests. Martineau is fifth in the Mountain West Conference in assist/turnover ratio at 2.60.
After using the same starting lineup in the first nine games of the season, Cougar head coach Dave Rose has started freshman forward Chris Collinsworth in the last five games. Seniors Ben Murdock and Sam Burgess along with juniors Lee Cummard and Trent Plaisted have started all 14 games this year while sophomore Jonathan Tavernari has made nine starts.
BYU PLAYER OF THE WEEK
JONATHAN TAVERNARI (JAN. 5) -- Sophomore forward Jonathan Tavernari recorded game highs of eight rebounds and three steals while scoring 17 points in 18 minutes off the bench Thursday in BYU's win over Loyola Marymount. The Sao Bernardo, Brazil, native connected five times from behind the three-point arc while making 50 percent of his long-range attempts (5-for-10). He set up two teammate baskets while going 6-of-13 on his own attempts from the floor overall. Tavernari started in the second half and contributed 11 points and five rebounds to help the Cougars turn a nine-point halftime advantage into a lead that grew to as many as 34 points in the final 20 minutes. Tavernari's five triples are the most he has made in a game since converting six three-pointers against No. 1 North Carolina on Nov. 24 in the championship game of the Las Vegas Invitational. He also made five treys in BYU's win over then No. 6 Louisville.
PLAISTED REACHES 1,000-POINT MILESTONE
With 22 points against Lamar, junior Trent Plaisted became the 37th member of BYU's elite 1,000 Point Club, joining such Cougar greats as Danny Ainge, Michael Smith, Devin Durrant, Fred Roberts, Kresimir Cosic and Andy Toolson to score at least 1,000 points in their Cougar careers. Plaisted now has 1,060 career points. Keena Young was the most recent addition to the club as he posted 1,068 points during his three-year BYU stint from 2005-07. Of four-year players, Plaisted is just the 10th Cougar to reach the 1,000-point milestone as a junior. The last four-year player to reach 1,000 points as a junior was Mark Bigelow with 1,312 following the 2002-03 season. Plaisted also has 550 career rebounds, making him just the 21st player overall and fifth junior among four-year players to record at least 1,000 career points and 500 career rebounds.
WORTHY OF MENTION
-- BYU's 20-point club this year includes Trent Plaisted, Lee Cummard and Jonathan Tavernari. Plaisted and Cummard have scored 20 points or more in four games while Tavernari has done so once. Among Plaisted's top scoring nights were 21 points against No. 6 Louisville and a season-high 24 points against No. 1 North Carolina. Cummard had a career-high 27 points against Lamar and 26 at Boise State while Tavernari totaled a career-best 29 vs. No. 6 Louisville.
-- BYU has had six individual double-double performances this year with Plaisted accomplishing the feat four times and Cummard on two occasions. Cummard became the first Cougar to record a double-double this season with 13 points and 10 rebounds against Idaho State. He added his fifth career double-double with 27 points and 10 rebounds against Lamar. Plaisted had 21 points and 12 rebounds against No. 6 Louisville before tallying 24 points and 17 rebounds against No. 1 North Carolina. He totaled 14 points and 15 rebounds vs. Weber State and had 18 points and a career-high-tying 18 rebounds against Pepperdine.
-- Trent Plaisted is the lone Cougar to score in double figures in all 14 games this season. His longest streak of consecutive double-figures scoring games is 15 during his freshman season in 2005-06 when he reached double digits in 25 of 29 games. Plaisted has scored in double figures in 60 of 82 games during his career.
-- Senior point guard Ben Murdock dished out a personal-best 10 assists with only two turnovers at Portland as the lone Cougar to reach double-digit assists in a game this year. He has dished out five or more assists in a game five times this year.
-- Freshman guard Jimmer Fredette made three three-pointers and scored 11 points during his 21 minutes at Boise State. He has hit from behind the arc in eight games this season. Fredette is one of four true freshman playing for the Cougars this year, joining forward Chris Collinsworth and guards Michael Loyd and Nick Martineau. Collinsworth has started the last five games.
-- BYU leads all MWC teams in scoring (79.9), scoring margin (+16.4), field-goal percentage defense (.379), rebounds (41.3), rebounding margin (+7.3), assists (18.4), three-pointers made (8.57) and defensive rebounds (29.3).
-- BYU has led at the half in 13 of 14 games this year, including 10 double-digit leads. The Cougars' only deficit came when they trailed 38-31 against No. 1 North Carolina. The Cougars are outscoring opponents by 12.1 points in the first period of play.
The Cougars' 11 victories this year have come by an average margin of 22.7 points, including a seaon-opening 40-point road win at Long Beach State (74-34). The win over the 49ers marked BYU's largest margin of victory over a Division I opponent since defeating Morgan State by 41 points (110-69) on Dec. 28, 1995. Including BYU's three losses, the Cougars still boast a scoring margin of 16.4 points this year. BYU won 17 games by double-digits last year, including seven by 20 or more points, and was the only team in the Mountain West Conference to not have a regular-season game decided by less than four points. With an average scoring margin of +9.1 last season, the Cougars posted their largest margin of victory since 1993 over the course of the year.
THIS YEAR'S LOSSES
BYU's three losses this year have come on neutral floors against No. 1 North Carolina and No. 6 (then No. 9) Michigan State and on the road at Boise State. All tough defeats, BYU held double-digit leads over both Michigan State and Boise State and battled the top-rated Tar Heels through six second-half lead changes. North Carolina (14-0), Michigan State (13-1) and Boise State (11-3) have a combined 38-4 record this year for a .905 winning percentage as of Jan. 5.
HITTING THE MARK
BYU is shooting 48.1 percent from the field this season while allowing opponents to shoot just 37.9 percent from the floor (No. 1 in the MWC). Overall, the Cougars have shot above 50 percent in six games this year. BYU has shot above 50 percent in the first half of six games this season and in the second half of seven contests, totaling 13 halves of play out of 26 with a shooting percetage of 50 percent higher, including three above 60 percent. The Cougars posted a season-high 60.4 percent efficiency against Hartford bolstered by a 63.6 percent second-half shooting mark (14-for-22). Individually, Lee Cummard and Trent Plaisted rank one and three among MWC players in field-goal percentage at 60.9 and 57.2 percent, respectively.
The Cougars are 11-2 this season when leading at the half with 10 of the 13 advantages coming by double digits. BYU suffered its first loss of the year after holding a halftime lead with a 68-61 defeat against No. 9 Michigan State after a 35-25 lead at the break. The Cougars led by 11 points at the half at Boise State but fell by three points to the Broncos. No. 1 North Carolina was the only team this season to post a halftime lead against BYU with a 38-31 advantage at the break. The Cougars are besting opponents by an average of 12.1 points in the first period of play after while scoring at least 40 points in the first half of seven of 14 games this season. BYU has scored at least 30 points in the first half of every game this season while holding opponents under 30 points 10 times. The Cougars' 36-12 lead at the break at Long Beach State marked their largest halftime advantage since being up by 28 points (51-23) against Western Oregon on Dec. 22, 2006. The 12 points given up by BYU in the first 20 minutes of the game at LBSU marked the fewest points allowed in a half by the Cougars since allowing a record-low 10 points against Air Force in 2003. BYU has topped 40 points in the second half of seven games this year while surpassing the 50-point mark in the second half three times.
PAINTING THE TOWN
The Cougars have outscored their opponents in the paint in 10 of 14 games this year, recording a +8.4 margin in that category. BYU has posted a double-digit margin in seven games, including a season-best +38 margin (54-16) against Jackson State. All three of BYU's losses on the season have come when the Cougars have been outscored in the paint.
MAKING THE MOST OF THE MISCUE
Despite recording just 0.1 fewer turnovers than their opponents on the year, the Cougars have outscored foes in points off of turnovers in 11 games this season, posting a +7.9 scoring margin in that category. BYU scored a season-best 26 points off of turnovers in its last outing against Loyola Marymount.
FAST AND FURIOUS
BYU has dominated on the fast break this season, outscoring opponents in that category in 12 of 14 games by an average margin 7.0 points per contest. The Cougars scored a season-best 20 fast-break points against Jackson State while tying their season high with a +16 margin. BYU's only two deficits in that category came in losses against No. 1 North Carolina (0-4) and No. 9 Michigan State (0-4).
FROM THE BENCH
BYU's reserves have outscored the opposition's bench only five times this year but they have done it in each of the last three games after seven straight games in a scoring defecit off the bench. In BYU's first nine games with Jonathan Tavernari starting, BYU's bench was outscored by an average of 1.6 points. BYU's reserves have averaged 6.6 more points than the opposition in the five games since Tavernari has been coming off the bench. Overall, the BYU bench has out scored opponent reserves by 1.3 points per game this season, tallying 312 points or 22.3 points per game to opponents' 294 points.
LEADERS OF THE PACK
Including a game-high lead of 34 points against Loyola Marymount in BYU's last outing, the Cougars have posted a double-digit lead in 13 of 14 games and have led by more than 20 points in nine games and more than 30 points in three contests. The lone exception to the double-digit leads came against No. 1 North Carolina when the game-high BYU lead was two points. The Cougars have led wire-to-wire in six games this season.
SINCE THE BEGINNING OF THE MWC ...
-- BYU has had six 20-win seasons in the first eight seasons, leading all MWC schools. Utah has had five, UNLV four, Air Force, Wyoming and San Diego State three and New Mexico two.
-- BYU has had the league's top RPI three times, been second twice and third on three occasions. The Cougars were second last year (18) behind UNLV (10).
-- BYU has played the toughest schedule on average of any team in the MWC. Last year, BYU's schedule was rated third behind Utah and UNLV. BYU had the league's toughest schedule in two of the previous three seasons.
-- BYU has the second-most overall wins (173, Utah leads at 175).
-- BYU is second in conference wins (73, Utah has 75).
-- BYU has the second-most MWC regular-season titles (three). Utah leads with four.
-- BYU is one of six MWC teams to win the MWC Tournament title.
MEN'S BASKETBALL HONORED FOR HIGH ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT
The NCAA honored the BYU men's basketball team with a public recognition award for the Cougars' Academic Progress Rate scores. BYU posted multi-year APR scores in the top 10 percent of all men's basketball teams in the country. "The athletes have really worked hard at striving to be good students," said E.J. Caffaro, Student Athlete Academic Center director and men's basketball academic coach. "We've worked hard to put together a strong academic program. Their high score is a result of their hard work and the success of that program." Out of the 336 Division I men's basketball programs in the country, BYU is one of 35 to be honored by the NCAA and the only basketball team from Mountain West Conference to receive the recognition. The Cougars are also one of only 10 teams to earn high academic achievement and also qualify for the past year's NCAA Tournament. Other NCAA Tournament teams who also received public recognition awards were Belmont (NCAA No. 15 seed), Holy Cross (No. 13 seed), Davidson (No. 13 seed), Illinois (No. 12 seed), North Carolina (No. 1 seed), Notre Dame (No. 6 seed), Pennsylvania (No. 14 seed), Villanova (No. 9 seed) and Xavier (No. 9 seed).