Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Predictions for the SDSU-BYU game tonight
With the big game (SDSU at BYU) happening later tonight, three of the Cougaracity contributors (Nick, Aaron, and Scott) decided to issue some thoughts and prognostications about the game. Enjoy!
I’m not going to lie …I’m crazy nervous for BYU’s game with SDSU. It’s the first ever matchup between MWC teams that are ranked in the top 10. This game is being hyped up to the point that upper bowl bench tickets that usually sell anywhere from $1-5, are being sold for $40-60. I wish I would have been more prepared and bought some early on to turn that huge profit.
As nervous as I am for this game, I am just as much, if not more, confident in this team's ability to play. I swear time has slowed down since BYU beat CSU, game time is taking forever to get here. San Diego State is a very big athletic team that has yet to lose this year (and I’m not going to get into strength of schedule here) and will create some problems for BYU. An obvious key for BYU if they’re going to win is to stay out of foul trouble. The front court needs to play smart and limit their fouls. Because once they are in foul trouble, SDSU will be able to dominate inside.
Given the way BYU has been able to consistently put up more than 70+ points in every game, and the game is at the Marriott Center, I give BYU the edge. Cougars win 86-79.
The game is going to start out back and forth, the crowd will loud and crazy. SDSU will hit a lot of shots early in the game, and then the Cougars will go all Jimmer on the Tecs. The Cougs will just be too fast, too relentless for the SDSU boys and will pull away in the end.
Besides Jimmer's 30-35 pts, Jacks will add another 20 and Collinsworth will contribute another 15. The crowd will go straight up nuts and the Marriot Center will explode.
I recently watched a clip from the ESPNU show "The Experts," and one or two of these "experts" were saying BYU opponents need to blanket Jimmer to stop BYU. They felt as though BYU is a one-man train very capable of being derailed. These people, I would suppose, have not watched enough BYU games (much like the rest of the country. Curse you, MWC!). Jimmer is asked to do a lot, but he is surrounded by very capable teammates.
My gut tells me this is not a "Jimmer" night. Clearly, he will be the defensive focus for this very good SDSU team. However, SDSU has played a Fredette-ful BYU six times. They are well aware you cannot just "blanket" Jimmer to win the game. The fact is Jimmer usually comes up big in big games (ex. @Arizona 2009, Arizona 2010, @UNLV 2011, etc.). So I am going to say this is 30+ game for Jimmer.
But other players will obviously have to come up big. I think we'll see big things from Collinsworth, Rogers, and Emery. I don't know what he'll do, but I think we will come away surprised/impressed with what Brandon Davies does against SDSU's big men. 22,000+ roaring BYU fans and a fast-paced BYU team will be too much for SDSU, and I think BYU will shock the pundits with a double-digit victory: BYU 84, SDSU 72. Now, what will happen @SDSU is a completely different conversation...
Here are some Jimmer/BYU highlights to whet your appetite for tonight's game: