BYU Wins Holy War

BYU Wins Holy War
George, like Collie and Harline before him, is now still open!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Quick Hits: Utah Football, BYU Football, Utah Jazz, and more...

I want to write more about these subjects, but school is killing me and I just don't have the time...

Deron Williams Returns

Before the season if you were to ask a Jazz fan what player the Jazz couldn't afford to lose, Deron Williams would be the first name mentioned. That makes the Jazz's 5-1 record in his absence even more amazing. Knight and Price filled in and gave the Jazz a great start to the season. Now with Williams returning it will be interesting to see how the Jazz transition. Last night both Knight and Price played the back-up role for Deron; however, it is becoming more clear that Knight is a better fit in the back-up position. Not to say that Price hasn't performed well, but Knight brings more to the Jazz attack. Williams had a quite night in his return. Deron had 7 points 9 assists and shot just 1-8 from the field. Although there wasn't any noticeable signs of limping, Deron appeared slower and less confident in his game. This should be little to worry about as Williams will play his way into a groove. The more interesting question will be how his ankle will hold up during the rest of the five game road trip. Williams played 31 minutes last night, and had to travel before their game tonight. How many minutes that Williams plays tonight will show the true health of his ankle.

Utah Football Under Attack From the National Media

The ACC, Big East, and PAC-10 are all really bad this year! Yet, the national media continues to try and force feed college football fans the company line that there is a significant difference between the BCS conferences and the non-BCS conferences. Why are they doing this? Unless something drastic happens both the WAC, MAC, and Mountain West Conference will have their champions ranked higher than the ACC, and Big East Champ. The major conferences don't want people thinking, how is it far that a North Carolina or Wake Forest is getting into a BCS bowl and an undefeated Utah/Boise State isn't getting in? If people were thinking about this then it would go further to expose the BCS as a joke.

The strategy that the national media is taking is to attack the University of Utah. This due to the fact that they are the strongest of the non-BCS schools. Claiming that they played in a weaker conference, and a weaker non-conference schedule compared to the champions of BCS conferences. Such a claim is unfounded and wrong. Just compare Utah's schedule to USC. USC might not even win their own conference, thanks to a loss to Oregon State. The same Oregon State team that the Utes beat at home the week following the Beavers beating the Trojans. So if the media is going to tell us how great the Trojans are this year, then the Utes need to be ranked above them and get more attention. Yet, doesn't USC play a tougher conference schedule compared to the Utes? NO, the Mountain West Conference is 6-1 against the PAC-10 with many of these wins coming from the lower level teams in the conference. Also the PAC-10 has just ONE, yes ONE team currently in the top 25 of the BCS rankings. That is compared to the three teams that the Mountain West Conference currently has ranked. On paper, and since there is no playoff that is all you can go on, Utah should be ranked above USC. If that is the case then any national media member would also rank North Carolina, or South Florida well below USC.

Not having the Utes ranked higher, and getting more respect insults the intellect of college football fans.

BYU Still Has a Shot at the BCS

With the Utes beating TCU the table is set for BYU to play themselves into the BCS picture. No one is talking about this possibility, because people assume it is far fetched; however, it is more probable than people realize. Here is what has to happen:

1 - BYU wins out. This would include beating Utah which would be a top ten team, and that would propel them up in the polls/help their BCS computer ranking. Also this will keep a one lose BYU team ahead of a undefeated Ball State.

2- Boise State loses a game. Boise State hasn't looked dominate all season and end the season against Nevada on the road and Fresno State.

3 - BYU doesn't get leap-frogged by the Big East/ACC/PAC-10 Champion(right now Oregon State is leading). If BYU finishes ranked ahead of any of these teams they earn the automatic birth.

It isn't an easy path, and BYU doesn't control their own destiny; however, the scenario is more likely than people want to admit. (Although the scenario of going to the Poinsettia Bowl is more likely)

Andrei Kirilenko Making the Jazz Go

Kirilenko has been creating an instant spark off the bench for the Utah Jazz, and it appears that Sloan's "Bring AK off the bench experiment" is succeeding. Kirilenko has the highest over/under rating in the NBA, and AK and Millsap are the over/under combo as well in the NBA. ( Besides AK providing a statistical advantage for Utah, he is also providing leadership and defensive toughness. The Jazz will now need consistency from Kirilenko as the season goes on if they hope to make a charge for the title.

What Happens to Boozer At the End of Games?

Since last year's playoffs Boozer has turned into a terrible clutch player. Boozer ranks 17th in turnovers per game among forwards. Yet, I can't prove this but he seems to lead the league in turnovers in the last two minutes of the fourth quarter. Boozer has seemed to press, and force passes at the end of games trying to make something happen. Instead of using the offensive set to create a scoring opportunity. Boozer has been a workhorse for the Jazz in the early part of the season, but if Boozer wants to be the closer for the Jazz he needs to be smarter with the basketball.

A Cool Site For Jazz Stats

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