No. 24 BYU suffers double-digit loss to Creighton

Alex Barcello scored 28 points, but the Cougars are likely out of the Top 25 after their second defeat

Sioux Falls, S.D. • Ryan Hawkins scored 19 of his season-high 25 points in the first half and Creighton beat No. 24 BYU 83-71 on Saturday.

Creighton (9-2) built its lead to as many as 20 before the break, helped by Hawkins’ four 3-pointers.

Hawkins finished 10 for 18 from the field, including 4 for 8 on 3s, and had eight rebounds for the Bluejays.

Alex Barcello scored 28 points for BYU (8-2), shooting 5 of 7 on 3-pointers. Gideon George played 20 minutes off the bench and led the Cougars with 11 rebounds.

Down by 21 points in the second half, the Cougars closed within 10 with just under nine minutes remaining when Seneca Knight hit one of his three 3-pointers.

“I think the physicality of the game took us by surprise,” Cougars coach Mark Pope said. “It was just really disappointing for us. We’re usually the ones that are kind of bringing the physicality to the game. We were getting pushed around today, and it took us a long time to finally respond.”

BYU legend Jimmer Fredette appeared on Twitter Spaces with former BYU player Tyler Hawes to discuss the game and preached patience to the Cougars’ fan base.

“We came out a little bit sluggish and they jumped on us early,” Fredette said. “It was just tough to come back against a really well-coached team.

Hawes said the Cougars losing Gavin Baxter to injury has proven to be “a lot bigger deal than any of us realized.”

“There [are] things you have to figure out during a year, and there [are] unexpected challenges that come up, and you just have to figure it out,” Hawes said.


The loss was the Cougars’ first by double digits in the regular season since an 82-71 setback to No. 1 Gonzaga last season. The loss likely will knock the Cougars out of the Top 25.


BYU is at Weber State next Saturday before heading to Honolulu for the Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic Dec. 22-25.

Tribune sports reporter Alex Vejar contributed to this story.