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Jul 10, 2019
wickedgame71 All-American
Historically, I'm more of a BYU fball fan but this upcoming yr is different...
So while I'll remain a major follower of BYU fball, I believe this yrs bball team will accomplish decidedly more than fball & could even produce another Jimmer like Sr season(team wise w/ a Sweet 16).

Here's my reasoning; and since I'm not a bball X & O guy tell me if you agree?

TJ, Yoeli, Toolson & Baxter are the most likely assured starters/majority minutes. With Emery, Wade, Harding or Saljaas as the 5th & top 2 off the bench.

First off, I think Pope and his staff will have a noticable impact on our players performance on the court (player development, schemes, team cohesiveness, etc). As well as the side benefit of players working their hardest to prove/better themselves to the new staff, etc. Combined w/ so many talented seniors; TJ, Yoeli, Toolson & Emery (though Emery is a wildcard assuming he regains his frosh yr type abilities & potential)

Though there obviously isn't another Sr yr Jimmer, I think it's very possible our overall starting 5 will be better. At least offensively and maybe not too far behind defensively.

TJ isn't the scorer that Jimmer was, but he's a better passing point, that can also score/create points on his own, both inside/driving & outside shooting.

Yoeli is a far better offensive threat than any post player on that '10/'11 team(or anyone on that team outside of Jimmer). Davies was only a soph scoring 11ppg. I think given Pope's reputation at developing inside players, Baxter will have a similar effect on this team that Davies did on Jimmers. Particularly on defense, which is where Yoeli lacks. And a Pope/Burgess coached Baxter could be developed enough offensively to make Yoeli double teams far more difficult/effective.

It's very possible that Toolson will prove the better off guard than J Emery. At least as a more diverse, overall offensive threat.

That leaves Nick Emery, Harding, Saljaas & possibly Wade to fit in somewhere as the 5th starter. Which could change depending on opponent, lineup needs, etc.

Though Jimmers Sr team had K Collingsworth, he was only a frosh and his impact could realistically be duplicated or exceeded by an improved Harding or if Emery regains and improves upon his frosh yr.

As far as schedule is concerned, if we show well at Maui(winning 2 out of 3), beat Houston, split games against both STM and Gonzaga & lose no more than 4 to 6 gms total, I think a Tournament bid is very possible? Gonzaga is elite but they lose a lot this year(their top 4 players) so stealing one from them is possible. Not that worried about splitting w/ St Mary's. Even with all their guys returning, we beat them last yr and we return & add more impact players than them. They're not Gonzaga elite.

Once in the Tournament, to get to 16 we'd certainly need a favorable bracket &/or some luck but I think this year's team is the best combo of most talented 4-5 ballers, that are also Sr's together, we've had in very long time.

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Jan 10, 2003
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