BYU Basketball Almost Nation’s No. 1 Team In First NCAA NET Rankings

Dec 4, 2023, 11:02 AM

BYU Basketball, Dallin Hall, NET Rankings...

BYU basketball checks in at No. 2 in the initial NET rankings for the 2023-24 season. (Nate Edwards/BYU Photo)

(Nate Edwards/BYU Photo)

PROVO, Utah – Is BYU basketball the best team in the country?

After the NCAA unveiled its first installment of the NET rankings on Monday, that question has to be asked.

BYU, off to its best start to a season in 13 years at 7-0, checked in as the No. 2 team in the nation. One spot away from the top spot in all of college basketball.

What’s fitting is that it results in them being the number two team in the Big 12. The number one team in the NET rankings is fellow Big 12 newcomer Houston.

BYU being this high in the NET rankings is significant as the NET serves as an evaluation tool for the NCAA Selection Committee when piecing together the March Madness bracket. The Cougars are in a great starting position to achieve any of its goals this season as a first-year team in the Big 12.

Compare this start in the NET to last year, where BYU began at No. 190. It was an uphill climb with that low start to make the NCAA Tournament in a mid-major league like the WCC. But in the Big 12, with many high-end teams on the schedule, BYU controls its destiny to return to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2021.

What are the NET rankings?

The NET replaced the RPI in 2018.

The algorithm used to rank teams in the NET is not public knowledge. But it considers game results, strength of schedule, game location, scoring margin, and net offensive and defensive efficiency.

BYU is the nation’s number-one team in scoring margin right now, defeating opponents by 31.7 points per game.

Having the NET rankings out also brings the “quad system” into focus. The more quadrant one games you play, the better for your resume to secure an at-large bid in the NCAA Tournament.

BYU basketball off to a strong start in

There are four quadrants in the NET rankings. They are defined by the rating of the team you are facing and where the game is played. Quad One games are against a team ranked 1-30 when the matchup occurs on a team’s home floor. The Quad 1 classification extends from 1-75 for a road game. On a neutral floor, it’s 1-50.


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Quadrant Two games are against teams rated 31-75 at home, 51-100 in a neutral setting, and 76-135 on the road.

BYU has played one Quad One game against San Diego State, a 74-65 victory on November 10. They are 2-0 against Quad Two opponents and 4-0 versus Quad Four teams.

BYU has its second Quad One opportunity on Saturday when they travel north to take on Utah at the Huntsman Center. During Big 12 play, BYU already has eight Quad One games and five Quad Two matchups.

NCAA NET Rankings Top 10

As of December 4, 2023

1. Houston – 8-0

2. BYU – 7-0

3. Arizona – 7-0

4. Creighton – 7-1

5. Purdue – 7-1

6. Baylor – 7-0

7. Colorado State – 8-0

9. UConn – 7-1

10. Marquette – 6-2

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.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow Mitch’s coverage of BYU in the Big 12 Conference on X and Threads: @Mitch_Harper.

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BYU Basketball Almost Nation’s No. 1 Team In First NCAA NET Rankings