COUGAR TRACKS

Dave Rose: This BYU Basketball Team Has More Offensive Weapons Than Sweet 16 Squad

Feb 22, 2020, 6:07 PM | Updated: 6:13 pm
Brigham Young Cougars guard Taylor Maughan (13), guard Jake Toolson (5) and guard Alex Barcello (4)...
Brigham Young Cougars guard Taylor Maughan (13), guard Jake Toolson (5) and guard Alex Barcello (4) celebrate as they lead over the Nevada Wolf Pack during the game at the Marriott Center in Provo on Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019. (Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)
(Spenser Heaps, Deseret News)

PROVO, Utah – Is this BYU team under first-year head coach Mark Pope better than the Cougars 2011 Sweet 16 team that was led by senior guard Jimmer Fredette?

To answer a tough question like that, you need to ask someone who is equipped with the knowledge and experience to broach such a topic. So on Cougar Sports Saturday, we asked former BYU head coach Dave Rose.

He didn’t pick one side over the other, but he did give a glowing endorsement of what this year’s BYU team has that Jimmer’s Sweet 16 team did not.

“It’s so hard to compare one thing from another. From an outsider watching this team, I think this team has way more offensive weapons,” Rose said. “I think that their ability to have two or three guys have an average offensive game and still win a game because the two or three other guys really pick it up. That to me seems to be a real advantage for this coaching staff. We had to have Jimmer play great every night, and he did.

“His senior season as an individual being consistent and holding up his end of the bargain for a team to be good…it’s unbelievable. We had Jackson Emery, Logan Magnusson, and had a great group of guys –Brandon Davies and Kyle Collinsworth were young — but Jimmer had to be the guy every single game or we wouldn’t have ended up with the 30-plus wins we did. With this year’s group, I think it is a little more diverse.”

A pretty compelling case from the man who coached Jimmer Fredette and that Sweet 16 team. But, that team in 2011 was able to take down a Top Five ranked team in the San Diego State Aztecs. That’s one area where this 2020 group has yet to get done if they want to be considered better than the 2011 squad.

Emotional Senior Night for Dave Rose

All seven of the seniors that will be honored prior to BYU’s game against Gonzaga were all recruited or coached by Dave Rose. The final home game of a collegiate career is always emotional for the players but it’s also a special thing their former coach as well.

“It’ll be a fun night for me,” Rose said. “The whole season has genuinely been fun. Everybody always asked me when I was coaching if I was having fun, but I never really was. I’m having fun this year. This is really enjoyable for me to watch these guys perform at their best level. I think that the consistency of this group has been tremendous. They easily could be 28-2 right now, it’s crazy. Every game has gone down to the wire.”

BYU tips off against Gonzaga at 8 p.m. (MST) and the game is televised on ESPN2 and will air on the radio on KSL NewsRadio.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12-3 pm) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.

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Dave Rose: This BYU Basketball Team Has More Offensive Weapons Than Sweet 16 Squad