BYU's Achilles heel heading into March Madness

BYU is all but heading to March Madness unless something crazy happens, so what is the biggest thing they need to work on before they get to the Tournament?

Feb 13, 2024; Provo, Utah, USA; Brigham Young Cougars forward Noah Waterman (0) blocks the shot of Antwann Jones (1).
Feb 13, 2024; Provo, Utah, USA; Brigham Young Cougars forward Noah Waterman (0) blocks the shot of Antwann Jones (1). / Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports

BYU started the season 9-0 and was looking like a very dangerous team. They suffered one loss in non-conference play to Utah and headed into Big 12 play ranked in the top 25. When conference play started, things did not look good for the Cougars, they were 0-2 in the conference and heading into a hostile UCF environment.

The Cougars were able to walk away from Orlando with the win and get their first basketball win in the Big 12 conference. BYU got their first win over a Big 12 veteran in their following games against Iowa State.

Fast forward to the present, the Cougars are 20-8 overall and 8-7 in the Big 12 and are practically a lock for the NCAA Tournament. Unless things just absolutely implode, the Cougars are going to have an NCAA Tournament appearance in their first year in the Big 12.

BYU had the number one offense and three-pointers made in the Big 12, they are also ranked third in the nation in three-pointers made. Their offense is rolling and when they can get a lead they are at their best.

However, the point of this story isn't to showcase everything good that BYU does, but to highlight what their Achilles heel is going into March Madness. BYU is not perfect and one word will describe what they need to focus on the most heading into the NCAA Tournament.


The Cougars are so good on offense, but they have a hard time being consistent. When the shots aren't falling for them, they go cold and have a hard time finding a consistent play or shot to get them back into the game. They rely on the three ball to give them momentum, but when those shots aren't falling they just end up getting behind that much more, making a comeback more and more difficult.

This team relies on the three-point shot so much that they struggle to score in the paint. Teams that go up against the Cougars know they need to lock down the beyond-the-arc because the presence in the paint is just not there as much. Even thought BYU makes you cover the entire half-court with everyone in their lineup being to shoot threes, they need to be stronger in the paint.

If BYU can use Aly Khalifa and Fousseyni Traore more inside both in the passing and scoring game, opposing teams will have to play them straight up, which gives them more opportunities to shoot the three ball.

Right now BYU is projected to be a seven-seed in the NCAA Tournament. If they can fix these issues just a little heading into March Madness, they can be a dangerous team that no one will want to face.

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