BYU upsets Kansas in the Allen Fieldhouse

BYU has just done the impossible, giving Kansas their first home loss of the season.
Jaxson Robinson controls the ball against Kansas
Jaxson Robinson controls the ball against Kansas / Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Before the game began, I sent out a Twitter poll to gauge Cougar Nation's optimism before the game began. Your faith has made you whole, BYU fans.

BYU's relationship with basketball bluebloods reminds me of a certain blue man (not Tobias Funke). The villain Megamind's reputation was being a loser. His nemesis, Metro Man was undefeated since birth, and was an unstoppable force in his sphere. While they played in the same league, Megamind was still considered 2nd-tier and Metro Man was the superhero equivalent of a blue blood; historically great individuals have everyone's faith when facing those beneath them. If Metro Man is Kansas, kissing babies and being the perfect poster child of college hoops prestige, BYU is the lowly Megamind, constantly forcing the issue and never giving up. Let's face it, BYU is just happy to be here right now. No one expects Megamind to get the best of Metro Man, but sometimes the little guy overcomes the impossible odds and comes out on top.

Well, I hope you were holding onto your butts, because BYU braved the PHOG on Tuesday and emerged like a roaring T-Rex.

BYU has done the impossible on Tuesday night, winning the game that no one believed they could against Bill Self's Kansas Jayhawks in the historic Allen Fieldhouse. In a bizarro world where BYU shoots 38% from 3 on the road and makes 80% of their free throws, the Cougars topped the Jayhawks 76-68.

Dallin Hall and Jaxson Robinson were especially exceptional for BYU, hitting 7 of their combined 15 3-point attempts and leading the team in scoring with 18 points each. Following a tough loss to Kansas State, many believed that escaping Lawrence with a win was essentially impossible, but the team showed up to win and the final score is a reflection of the fight this team has shown all season.

Hunter Dickinson, Fousseyni Traore
Fousseyni Traore defends Kansas' Hunter Dickinson / Jamie Squire/GettyImages

Just one day removed from BYU dropping out of the AP top 25, BYU took down a number 7 Kansas team that just doesn't lose at home. After this game, coach Bill Self's career 17 home losses ticked up to 18, and he had the following to say post-game:

"BYU was better than us tonight. The second half, after we got up 12, the second half, they controlled it. We hoped to score and they actually ran offense to score. Give them credit, they caused us to look bad and they were successful."

Bill Self

The Cougars snapped several of Kansas' home winning streaks, including the following notable examples:

  • 67 games against unranked teams (though this should have been a ranked matchup)
  • 82 games when leading at halftime.
  • 19 home wins in a row

In a game where Kansas was without their top scorer, Kevin McCullar, the void he left was too wide for Kansas to seal. The Jayhawks hit an ugly 20% of their long-range attempts on 3-for-15 shooting. Kansas entered this game with the highest field goal percentage per game in the Big 12 but only made 39% from the field against BYU's defense. In addition to that, the Jayhawks matched BYU's 19 made free throws while shooting 7 more than the Cougars' final total.

Kansas shot poorly in this game, but BYU's defense deserves some credit for keeping Kansas' offense below 70 points, after struggling to do so since holding Kansas State to 66 on February 10th. Hunter Dickinson led all Jayhawk scorers with 17 points and 11 rebounds. Dickinson also hit one of KU's 3 3-pointers on the game, but just didn't do enough to carry Kansas over upset-minded BYU.

BYU improves to 20-8 with this win and surpasses the .500 in-conference mark again. The Cougars will take the floor again on Saturday, March 2nd to take on TCU in Provo.

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