March 20, 2008

A&M, BYU paying compliments before game

Texas A&M and BYU tip off in just a little over an hour at the Honda Center in Anaheim, and the Aggies and Cougars will be clawing at each other in order to get to the second round of the NCAA tournament. Wednesday, however, both sides were nothing but complementary to each other.

BYU earned its respect this season early in the season with a win over Louisville and great showings in tight losses to North Carolina and Michigan State on neutral floors. The Aggies burst out of the gate with a NIT Season Tip-Off championship in New York, but the Aggies were the only NIT Final Four team to make the NCAA field this season. A late Big 12 tournament run, however, makes the Aggies look like they are righting the ship at the right time.

"(The players) are buying into this team because we know how good - we can show them film of them beating Louisville, taking Carolina to the wire and taking Michigan State to the wire. So they're buying into this team and they're favored. They're an eight seed and we're a nine seed. We're going to be wearing the dark uniforms and they'll be wearing the white ones, so our guys will be dialed in," said A&M head coach Mark Turgeon. "I've watched BYU enough to know that if they would have played in the Big 12, they would still have been a NCAA tournament team. They got enough good players, enough maturity, they got all kinds of skill and they got a toughness about them that they'd still be in it."

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