Selection Sunday Reactions

The Cougars (29-5) have earned a No. 7 seed in the NCAA Tournament and will play No. 10 seed Florida (21-12) Thursday in Oklahoma City. The winner of that game will go on to face either No. 2 seed Kansas State or No. 15 seed North Texas on Saturday for a trip to the Sweet Sixteen in Salt Lake City. But before worrying about that, BYU will be looking to stop a long string of first-round losses.

Here is what the Cougars had to say on Sunday after finding out their seeding and opponent:

Coach Rose

-"We're excited, excited to be in the tournament and playing a really well-known team, a team that's missed the tournament a couple years but obviously has been really successful, won a couple of national championships. So it's a good challenge for us, and we're excited to get going."

-On his familiarity with Florida: "Well I've seen them play a few times. It's a really athletic team, I think they get the ball up and down the floor, and it's a high-scoring team. So the next two or three days we'll break things down, put a game plan together. I know our guys are excited to go play, so it's a great thing for our university and a great thing for this team and our athletic program."

-On how Tyler Haws is doing after suffering an eye injury last week: "Tyler's actually doing better today. His eye's kinda opened up a little bit more, and I think his vision is getting better. Hopefully we can just get that swelling to go down and we can get him back out there and start playing for us."

-"This team's responded really well to the challenges which we've had, and hopefully we get everybody healthy, get everybody in practice and prepare and go play our best."

Jimmer Fredette

-On his familiarity with Florida: "I watched a lot of their games this year on ESPN. I've played against actually a lot of the kids. Their point guard [Erving Walker] is from New York City. I played against him and Chandler Parsons … so I actually am a little familiar with them and some of their players and everything [and] personnel."

-On how Florida matches up with BYU: "I think they're a similar type team, to be honest with you. They like to run and gun as well, they're a high-scoring team, high tempo, so it could be a high-scoring matchup if we're all shooting well and getting things to go."

Jackson Emery

-"I think it's to our advantage that we're in the western region. I mean, if we can pull out two games over there in Oklahoma we can bring it back to Salt Lake, which would be really cool. But we gotta take it one game at a time."

-On the team's reaction to finding out their seeding and opponent: "Just excitement. You know, what you can expect from a team that works hard all year to get there. And just to see finally, it just kind of gets out all your jitters, all your anxiousness [when you find out]."

Jonathan Tavernari

-On what he thinks the selection committee saw in the Cougars to seed them where they are: "A team that was a constant top-25 [team] throughout the year, a team that was at least in the top 17 throughout the year. Could [we] have done a little better? Definitely. We could have won the conference, we could have won the conference tournament, but nevertheless that's all in the past and we're just looking to playing Thursday."

-On what might make this tournament appearance different from his others: "We're a better seed this time. Florida's as good of a team as we've played in conference or the NCAA Tournament, but nevertheless it's still the best seed that we've had, so based on that we should be really excited because they're a really good team and we're as good of a team as we've had the last five years."

Noah Hartsock

-On whether the team feels comfortable with its situation and is ready to play: "I think so. [We're going to be] having good fan support. They're gonna have a lot of people out there I think from my home town [Bartlesville, Oklahoma] just cheering us on. I think that [will] give us a little bit more confidence."

-On whether there is added pressure on BYU given the school hasn't won an NCAA Tournament game since 1993: "I think so. Everyone talks about it, how we haven't won for a long time. So I think we're just gonna go in there, play our game that we've been playing all this year – playing really confident, playing great teams. I think we're going to prepare [and] we're gonna play as hard as we can and hopefully come out with a win."

Total Blue Sports Top Stories