BYU’s Brandon Averette Delivers Clutch Performance In Upset Over SDSU

Dec 18, 2020, 5:57 PM
Brandon Averette - BYU Basketball...
BYU basketball guard Brandon Averette. (BYU Photo/Jaren Wilkey

PROVO, Utah – BYU senior guard Brandon Averette always wanted to play for Mark Pope during his collegiate career. He had to wait until his senior year to make that happen. It hasn’t always gone smooth this year for the starting guard this year, but he has remained resilient.

The resiliency turned into clutch at Viejas Arena on Friday as the former Oklahoma State, and Utah Valley guard came up with a big performance to give BYU its first non-conference win against a Top 25 team in 13 years.

Averette and BYU defeated No. 18 San Diego State 72-62. The 10-point outcome doesn’t highlight how the game played out in the final minutes. BYU held a 63-62 lead with 1:11 remaining and the possession. It would have been easy to assume that Alex Barcello would get the shot to try and give BYU more of a cushion on the undefeated Aztecs.

Barcello had the rock and dribbled above the arc, then passed to Averette, BA went back to Barcello, and then Barcello set up Averette with a wide-open three. Averette, who came into the game shooting 34.5 percent from beyond the arc this season, rose up and knocked it down.

In an empty Viejas Arena, you could only imagine what the groans from the SDSU’s The Show would have made after Averette hit that shot. It was clutch, and it was the shot that put BYU over the top to lock up the win.

Averette finished the game with 10 points, and all 10 were in the second half. During a period of the game when San Diego State made necessary adjustments to lock up BYU’s offense after the Aztecs found themselves down by 15 at the break. An unlikely source that the Aztecs weren’t zeroing in on stepped up in the biggest stage for BYU.

This season has led to questions about who after Alex Barcello will be the second or third scorers like everyone saw with Yoeli Childs, TJ Haws, and Jake Toolson a season ago. There isn’t a clear two or three after Barcello. But on any given night, the Cougars have a deep and competitive roster ready to showcase itself on the biggest stages. That was Averette on Friday afternoon.

The win for BYU makes up for the home game setback against Boise State just nine days ago and has to put the Cougars back in the at-large conversation for an NCAA Tournament bid when March rolls around. Especially when you look at San Diego State’s remaining schedule, BYU could end up being the Aztecs only blemish this entire season.

BYU’s win at Montezuma Mesa in 2020 shall forever be known as the Brandon Averette Game.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m., KSL Newsradio). Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper and the KSL Sports app.

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