Show 'Em Some Love

Did you know that there are five games on BYU's Provo campus this weekend that feature a nationally ranked Cougar team? If you were not aware of this fact, you are not alone. Support for and awareness of BYU's best sports teams is shamefully low, but Cougar fans have a great opportunity to change that this weekend.

Hard working, talented BYU sports teams deserve more fan support than they currently receive. BYU has the best athletic program of any non-BCS schools according to the final Sears Director's Cup standings for the 2004-2005 school year. Low fan turnout, however, indicates that Cougar fans do not fully appreciate the outstanding athletic ability at BYU.

Each year the Sears Director's Cup scores college athletic programs based on the performance of each of their sports teams. Schools accumulate points based on their end of season ranking for each sport in which they field a team. BYU ranked 27th in the 2004-2005 school year. The Cougars are on track to equal or exceed that mark in 2005-2006. Interestingly, the two sports with the highest attendance (football and men's basketball) contributed nothing to BYU's Director's Cup ranking.

This weekend is the perfect opportunity for Cougar fans to show that they are true BYU sports fans by going out to watch some of the best collegiate athletic talent in the country. BYU's nationally ranked Women's Basketball (#19), Women's Gymnastics (27), Men's Swimming (20), and Men's Volleyball (2) teams will all be in action on campus in the next three days.

Tonight BYU's 19th-ranked Women's Basketball team takes on the 16th-ranked New Mexico squad. BYU's women's team has surprised everyone but themselves this season by running to a 17-1 record, first place in the Mountain West Conference and a national ranking. Unfortunately, few fans are along for the ride. BYU ranks at the bottom in attendance among top 25 teams.

Head on out to the Marriott Center and support the lady Cougars as they try to put a stranglehold on first place in the Mountain West and improve their national ranking against number 16 New Mexico.

Men's and Women's swimming have a grudge meet tonight against Utah. Last year Utah squeaked out a victory over the Cougars and took the regular season conference crown in the process. Show up at the Richards Building pool tonight at 6:00 to help BYU show the school north of town who's boss.

The marquee match-up of the weekend features the #2 BYU Men's Volleyball team against Pepperdine, the #1 team in the country. #1 versus #2. Do you really need more to get you out of your house and into the Smith Fieldhouse this Friday and Saturday at 7:00 p.m.?

In case you do need added incentive, this weekend marks the first game that the young man some have called the best volleyball player in North America will suit up for the Cougars. Yosleyder Cala was playing for the Cuban National volleyball team just two years ago. He has since defected to the United States and enrolled at BYU. Cala alone is worth the price of admission.

BYU volleyball fans are the best sports fans at BYU hands down. They are smart and they are loud and they support their team to the end. The Smith Fieldhouse rocks when the BYU spikers get rolling. If you have not been to a BYU men's volleyball game, you are really missing out. Now is the perfect time to change that, but get there early as both Friday and Saturday matches will sell out quickly. You out-of-staters are in luck because Friday's game will be shown live on BYUTV.

If you are in the state of Utah, take time this weekend to expand your Cougar sports horizons and go support BYU's outstanding but underappreciated athletes.

BYU On-Campus Weekend Sports Schedule

#19 BYU Women's Basketball v. #16 New Mexico
Thursday 7:00 p.m. Marriott Center
$5 General Seating; $4 Seniors/Students/Children; $6 Reserved Seat

BYU #20 Men's and Women's Swimming & Diving v. Utah
Thursday 6:00 p.m. Richards Building Pool.
FREE Admission

#27 BYU Women's Gymnastics v. Utah State
Thursday 7:00 p.m. Smith Fieldhouse
$5 General Seating; $4 Seniors/Students/Children; $6 Reserved Seat

#2 BYU Men's Volleyball v. #1 Pepperdine
Friday 7:00 p.m. Smith Fieldhouse
$5 General Seating; $4 Seniors/Students/Children; $6 Reserved Seat

Men's Basketball v. Air Force
Saturday 1:00 p.m. Marriott Center $1 General Admission

#2 BYU Men's Volleyball v. #1 Pepperdine
Saturday 7:00 p.m. Smith Fieldhouse
$5 General Seating; $4 Seniors/Students/Children; $6 Reserved Seat


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