18. BYU (17-6)
Things have gone remarkably well for BYU in their first season in the Big 12. Little may have been expected before the season, but a 12-1 start showed that this program has potential to make some noise this year. There have been the expected hiccups during conference play, adjusting to a new and tougher league, but there’s a lot to like in Provo as well.
BYU struggled earlier in the week, falling 82-66 on the road against Oklahoma back on Tuesday night. It wasn’t one of the Cougars’ best defensive efforts despite 21 points from Fousseyni Traore in the loss. They’d play better over the weekend, holding on for a 72-66 win at home against a Kansas State team playing better as of late. Traore had 14 points and 8 rebounds and was one of five players in double figures, including a 12-point, 7-rebound effort from Spencer Johnson.
While it wasn’t a perfect week, BYU is still in great shape in the metrics despite a 5-5 mark in Big 12 play. They’ve shown that they can hang with some great teams in this league, even if the results haven’t always come against some of the top teams. It’s UCF and Oklahoma State on the agenda next week, meaning the Cougars really need a pair of wins as heavy favorites.