BYU Sports

BYU basketball: “We need a lot of work,” Rose says after Cougars bow out of NIT

First Published      Last Updated Mar 16 2017 02:31 pm

In every year of BYU basketball coach Dave Rose's career, the Cougars have ended their season away from the Marriott Center.

Until Wednesday night.

The third-seeded Cougars lost 105-89 to a UT Arlington club that was better than its No. 6 NIT seeding (or maybe BYU was over-seeded?) in front of 7,247 in Provo. It was a decent-sized crowd considering the 9 p.m. tipoff and the fact that the game wasn't part of the season-ticket package.

Because the previous season-ending losses occurred at NCAA Tournament sites, once in Houston (2006) and twice at Madison Square Garden (2013 and 2016), reporters such as yours truly weren't generally able to ask Rose big-picture questions.

Wednesday was different.

And Rose was pretty blunt in his assessments of the season and what needs to be done moving forward to ensure the Cougars don't repeat the 2016-17 campaign, a disappointing season — by most accounts.

I've included some of his comments in this quick glance back at the game and look-ahead to the future.

Obviously, all that he said couldn't be included in the piece.

Here's most of the transcript from last night, and some comments from Eric Mika and Nick Emery as well:

Rose on what this team needs to do, or have happen, to get over the hump next year:

"We need a lot of work. That's kind of what [has to happen]. The end of every season, the finality of it, you start to evaluate what you have to do next year to have a better season. This is the first year in my 12 years that we have actually ended the season here, in Provo. We ended it in Houston my first year, and some seven or eight years in NCAA tournament site, and two years in New York. This is new for us, as far as our staff is concerned.

The only thing that I can see right now is that we need to work. Our players need to go to work. Our coaches need to go to work. And we need to find a group of guys that can get together and be able to overcome a lot of these issues that we weren't able to overcome this year.

And I look forward to it. I think that usually you are trying to rebuild your whole team, at least in the past three or four years it is new players. I think the players for the most part will be pretty similar. We just need to get a couple guys back off their missions and then go to work."

Rose on what work needs to be done and if some of that involves mental-toughness improvement:

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