#32 BYU Women's Basketball 2021-2022 Preview

BYU Cougars
Overall Rank: #32
Conference Rank: #1 West Coast
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BYU has played second fiddle to Gonzaga lately in the West Coast Conference. The Cougars still reached the NCAA Tournament last season though and they beat Rutgers in the first round too. They have not won the conference since 2015-2016. That could change this year though. While Gonzaga reloads, the Cougars return their top seven scorers. It is not like the Bulldogs are going to fall too far, but this is the opportunity for Coach Jeff Judkins and company to remind the rest of the WCC that they have a very good program too.
2020-21 Record: 19-6, 13-3
2020-21 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Jeff Judkins
Coach Record: 430-200 at BYU, 430-200 overall
Key Departed Players (starters in bold)
Malli Perri, Forward, 1.9 ppg
Tahlia White, Forward, 1.8 ppg
Key Returning Players (starters in bold)
Shaylee Gonzales, Sophomore, Guard, 17.8 ppg
Paisley Harding, Senior, Guard, 14.1 ppg
Lauren Gustin, Sophomore, Forward, 11.3 ppg
Tegan Graham, Senior, Guard, 8.3 ppg
Sara Hamson, Senior, Center, 5.1 ppg
Maria Albiero, Senior, Guard, 5.0 ppg
Kaylee Smiler, Sophomore, Guard, 3.1 ppg
Kate Vorwaller, Freshman, Guard, 1.3 ppg
Kyra Beckman, Freshman, Forward, 0.8 ppg
Key New Players
Amanda Barcello, Freshman, Guard
Rose Bubakar, Freshman, Forward
Emma Calvert, Freshman, Forward
Nani Falatea, Freshman, Guard
Heather Hamson, Freshman, Forward
Amber Kartchner, Freshman, Guard
Arielle Mackey-Williams, Freshman, Guard
Shaylee Gonzales returned to the basketball court in 2020-2021 and picked up right where she left off. On the year, the sophomore guard averaged 17.8 points and 3.6 assists. Her three-point shooting percentage dropped compared to her freshman year back in 2018-2019, but she emerged as a more dynamic scoring threat. Paisley Harding will rejoin Gonzales in the backcourt after ranking second on the team with 14.1 points per game. Both Gonzales and Harding can handle the ball, but Maria Albiero is a steady two-year starter who dished out 3.1 assists per game. Tegan Graham is a 6-0 guard who has done a bit of everything for the Cougars off the bench. Last season she averaged 8.3 points per game. Lauren Gustin and Sara Hamson are back to form a solid frontcourt. Gustin tallied 11.3 points and 12.6 rebounds as a freshman and should be even better with a year of experience under her belt. Hamson has been a starter for the better part of four seasons and the 6-7 senior had her best year in 2019-2020 when she averaged 7.3 points, 7.8 rebounds and 4.7 blocks. With everybody back who was part of the regular rotation last year, Coach Judkins will not have to rely at all on his group of seven incoming freshmen. However, it is a good class and do not be surprised if 6-4 forward Emma Calvert works her way into the regular rotation and adds more quality depth to the frontcourt.
Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA
By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 68.4 (113th in nation, 4th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 59.2 (50, 2)
Field-Goal Percentage: 44.3 (41, 2)
Field-Goal Defense: 35.8 (22, 1)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 6.9 (91, 3)
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 33.5 (77, 4)
Free-Throw Percentage: 74.1 (64, 4)
Rebound Margin: 3.6 (73, 2)
Assists Per Game: 16.2 (23, 3)
Turnovers Per Game: 14.6 (103, 2)
Madness 2021 Women’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#67 Emma Calvert