Maui Classic preview!

#43 R.P.I. Brigham Young vs. #59 R.P.I. Virginia Tech: 

Today’s word of the day is… sunrise!

sun·​rise, \ ˈsən-ˌrīz

  1. the apparent rising of the sun above the horizon.
  2. the time when the upper limb of the sun appears above the horizon as a result of the diurnal rotation of the earth.
  3. Coffee, typing… mo’ coffee and mo’ typing… as this Jenny Craig leaner-meaner preview has to be done prior to… sunrise!
  4. EDITING=Turkey Day Eve (coach God, willing!)
  5. ; )

B.Y.U. Head Coach: Mark Edward Pope: age=47, 80–58 overall, 3-3 at B.Y.U. Pope has a rep’ for: backcourt play, structuring, scoring.

Baller (6′10″, 235 lb.) m.Pope, is a former college and professional player, he played for the Kentucky Wildcats, where he was part of the 1996 national championship team, and the Washington Huskies where he was the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year. As a 2nd-round draft pick, Pope later balled for the Indiana Pacers, Milwaukee Bucks, and Denver Nuggets of the N.b.a.

It looks like he could still run ball, and probably does!

In 2006, enrolled in medical school at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York City. In 2009, he left medical school and joined Mark Fox’s coaching staff at the University of Georgia. Fox was an assistant coach when both were at UW. The following season (2010–11), Coach Pope moved to Wake Forest University to serve as an assistant under Jeff Bzdelik.

In May 2011, Pope was hired as an assistant to Dave Rose at BYU. In March 2015, Pope was hired as the new head basketball coach at Utah Valley University, replacing the retiring Dick Hunsaker. At Utah State Coach Pope went a reasonable 77–56 and did well enough in the C.B.I. thrice.

In April 2019, Pope replaced Rose as the new head basketball coach at B.Y.U.

Daddy Pope and his wife, Lee Anne, a former assistant to talk show host David Letterman, have four daughters. Lee Anne herself is the daughter of the late Lynn Archibald, who was the head basketball coach at the University of Utah from 1983-1989
and was an assistant at BYU in the 1990s.

Pope is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

B.Y.U. at a glance:

  • 44th in 3-point percentage D allowed.
  • 47th in 3-point percentage.
  • 293rd in FTA’s total.
  • 325th in o-Rebounding.
  • 345th in Swats!!!
  • (i.e. this is an all-G team… for the moment…)

Cougar Returning Starters=3

Brigham Young Strengths:

  • These Cougars are led by a pair of talented senior guards. I’d have to say that 16.0 ppg with 4.4 rpg counts as a strength. And so, would one #5 Jake Toolson. A 6′5″, 2o5 lb. Sr. year off-G. Jake Toolson can outburst score, his shooting line of 44.7% overall, 83.3% from the charity stripe and a very keen 45.2% when dialing long-distance says so. His wife Sara and his son Gus say they: “agry”. The book reads: that this power-Tool’ can penetrate inside and gun it from range; and there were not many more coveted grad’-Transfers this previous off-season. (cue: Utah Valley). And a few of my preview mags did nominate Toolson as 2nd or 3rd-string all-West Coast. As this kid was a big-time (30 ppg) ‘Zona high school scorer and he is a member of the Honors Court.

    A handy Tool‘ from outside!
  • 6′4″, 170 lb. final year and 2nd-team all-Conference TJ Haws manufactures you some outside production although his shooting numbers are down thus far this campaign. 13.5 ppg, with the team lead in dimes dropped (3.7 apg) and the alpha in swipes (1.7 spg) is none too bad when you are only a 21.4% maker on your 3-point takes and only 39% from the floor. Haws was a VHT (very highly touted) scholastic baller with a tag’ that read explosive scorer. Haws is married (wifey=Lauren) and this gives the Cougars the all-locked-up backcourt in America no doubt. His father Marty Haws played for B.Y.U. from 1986-90 and earned All-W.a.c. Honors; so, the family tree sprouts roundballs here. And oh yes… Haws was merely your four-time 5A Utah state champion (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014); your Gatorade and Mr.Basketball for the entire state of Utah his Sr. Prom year. Good for 57th overall from Scout coming outta high school. Haws is very experienced and he has played a major role on this team throughout his career and may be the Cougar’s best pure shooter (on paper).
  • The other double-digit scorer to watch is junior guard 6′4″, 170 lb. Alex Barcello (11.2 ppg, 3.6 rpg), an Arizona transfer who scored 16 points last week against Houston in a win. Barcello was a 2-time Arizona high school Player of the Year and he nearly won the American Family Insurance National 3-Point Shooting Competition a few years back. As his 3.3 ppg average down in ‘Zona was pretty unexpected… as more was expected, here.

Brigham Young Weaknesses:

  • (Frontcourt… at least until this kid returns…)
  • near Superstar 6′8″, 231 lb., Sr. Power/Forward Yoeli Childs, who is out for the first nine games because of an NCAA N.b.a. draft withdrawal paperwork S.N.A.F.U. suspension… is nearly all-Conference all-Everything according to all my pre-season mag’s. Lindy’s preseason magazine merely lists him and his 2018-2019 (21 ppg, 10 rpg, on 52% shooting overall with 33% deep and nearly 2 bpg) as their: Conference Player of the Year, the West Coast’s Best Rebounder and their penultimate N.b.a. Prospect. This is a broad-shouldered good-looking kid who did surprise when he (very) last sec’ renaged on the Associative Property to return to Provo. Childs-play was the 53rd ranked kid in high school according to ESPN and is said to have purer Five or Center type skillz down-low while being trapped in more of a Four or P/F’s body.
  • Pope teams have a tag for not playing life-n-death D.
  • And for getting lower echelon upset… from time-to-time.
  • THIN pine-squad, you have to wonder how they will do on their third game in three nites?

Cougar Bench: (depth=2)

6′6″, 185 lb., sophomoric Connor Harding drops you 7.3 ppg in relief and 6′7″, 215 lb., final year Zac Seljaas gets you 6.8 ppg as a substitute. Connor, however, is a big-time pure shooter with sizzling 58% range from beyond the arc thus far. Caveat being… this is a lowercase or small bench with nearly no true Three through Five frontcourt love. That said B.Y.U. does play 4-Guard sets well/comfortably enough as Harding and Seljaas both employ very good backcourt size.

Winning this runner-up placement down @Maui is all about, what(s)???

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Illationconclusion(s) and OPT digits:

Number of Cougars who could prowl @Tech=2, was 3.

the takeaway:
The takeaway here is… beating/upsetting ex-#1 Michigan State in round no.1 does not a bad Hawaiian Punch trip make.

However, going 2 up and 1 down AND having upset pre-season #1 Michigan State does a jailbreak of a Hawaiian 5-‘o’ trip make.


B.Y.U. currently sits at 68th in KenPom, yet at times, it has certainly looked better than that this year. They were picked 2nd or 3rd in the West Coast Conference by all my preview mags and they do have some top-heavy star power when 100% fully loaded. As this is surely a post-season team, only caveat being… dancing or 12-toes?

B.Y.U. ranks 43rd in offensive efficiency, with their efficiency on high display against the Bruins. Their bigs have struggled gathering rebounds at times this season, and the team as a whole has not excelled at free-throw shooting.

Our handy-dandy friend the so-called Forum Guide of Graham Houston fame is calling for a ‘see you next month’ looksee.

The annualized year-to-date vitals say that… V.Tech is up 10% in shooting percentage margin (a little bit more over on D); V.Tech is up 6% in 3-point percentage margin (virtually all on O); and the Hokies are up an interesting +6 caroms in rebounding margin (nearly all because B.Y.U. checked in pretty negatively here).


The most recent 5-game metrics say that… although only one-game difference existed here technically speaking… the Hokies are down 2% in shooting and defending nearly across the board. Whereas the Cougars were virtually statistical isomers of their first five-games; less a 5% improvement in defensing the 3-ball of late.

~11:30 kick-off!

B.Y.U. is up 3% at the charity stripe for the year.

As per our word of the day… then it dawned on me that this one is not all that complex…

As we see two pretty decent backcourt heavy teams. One missing a frontcourt centerpiece and the other with no frontcourt centerpieces whatsoever.

Ergo, therefore, to wit… I went in and crunched ONLY 3-point big island numbers from range in this Maui gymnasium.

Accordingly… (for:against)

  • B.Y.U. round#1 (50% made vs. 36% allowed) then round#2 (27% made vs. 22% allowed).
  • VeeTee round#1 (48% made vs. 35% allowed) then round#2 (38% made vs. 46% allowed).

So, in other words… it looks like V.Tech had fresher shooting legs for round no.2 —every bit as much as it looks like m.Young’s defensive legs got a little round no.2 older. (spies say V.Tech lacked Chi or energy for Dayton… tho’ how much of that is what they unladed into Magic Johnson State and how much was jetlag, the beach-life or anything else?)

REAL Playar 1o1!!!

Nevertheless… that is your consolation game storyline… pick the team you think 3-ball’s better.

Or you could just pick the more veteran older team
with more 1-3/Wing experience. As I’d have
to very modestly fave B.Y.U. after running
the early AM numbers.

Going with 69-67… just gotta figure out which way, yet…

FREE “Book ’em Dano”!!!
FREE dunking and then burning Ferrari rubber!!!

(52% confidence interval)
Virginia Tech
=69, Brigham Young=67




1 Responses You are logged in as Test

  1. I am not sure BYU has anyone who can handle Nolley. Also, Think Bede D will give Haws some problems.

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