Provo • After their four losses in November and December, all away from the Marriott Center and all by 10 points or more, BYU coach Dave Rose maintained that the Cougars were still capable of turning into an above-average basketball team, one that could extend its streak of six straight NCAA Tournament appearances.
Judging by their last six games coming on the heels of that 79-64 loss at Baylor the Cougars have proved their coach's confidence in them to be well-founded. On their longest winning streak (six) since Jimmer Fredette led them to seven in a row toward the end of the 2010-11 season, the Cougars have moved back onto the NCAA Tournament bubble.
Experts such as ESPN's Joe Lunardi will have more to say about that Monday morning when the latest round of tournament projections comes out, but with an RPI in the low 30s and a victory, finally, over a team (Santa Clara) with an RPI under 100, BYU's tournament stock is rising. Led by reliable stars Brandon Davies and Tyler Haws and the resurgence of point guard Matt Carlino, who has been stellar in the West Coast Conference games to date, the Cougars (4-0, 14-4) are playing their best basketball of the season.