Former Cougar says BYU Basketball season hasn’t been as disappointing as some think

Coach Rose and the BYU Basketball program have been criticized for the 2016-2017 season. Former Cougar Chris Miles says that criticism is unwarranted.

Many fans envisioned the 2016-2017 BYU basketball season to be the beginning of a dynasty – an era where the Cougars would finally usurp Gonzaga as King’s of the Conference.

But expectations don’t always match reality, as many are now discovering.

It takes time for a program to be built, and several of the successes are largely unknown, while the failures are often front-and-center.

Unfortunately, the lofty expectations thrust upon the BYU Basketball team have fallen short and BYU head coach Dave Rose has received unwarranted criticism – when you look at all that he has accomplished, especially over the last few years.

Dave Rose took the reins as BYU head coach in 2005. In the first six years of his tenure, he led his teams to four conference championships and five berths to the NCAA tournament. In the five years since that time, BYU has changed conferences – from the Mountain West Conference to the West Coast Conference – and hasn’t yet won a conference championship while making three trips to the NCAA tournament and two trips to the NIT semifinals.

Some have said that Coach Rose hasn’t accomplished anything in those five years, and while they haven’t been to par with his early years, former Cougar Chris Miles takes exception to these claims.

“I take personal offense at somebody’s lack of ability to see what has happened in the program and be able to appreciate what’s been done,” said Miles.

Miles divides Rose’s career up into two parts: the era of winning championships, and the era of individual success.

“So far, there’s been two chapters of Coach Rose’s career as the Head Coach at BYU. The first chapter was a chapter of winning championships, increasing wins each year – at some points he has won 26 games and received criticism and that’s difficult to do,” Miles added.

Miles says that success came with sacrifice at the expense of some of the players.

“During the first five years of Coach Rose’s career the team is winning championships because there is an emphasis on the team,” said Miles. “It’s my personal opinion that in the last five years, players have chosen – to some extent – their own careers.”

According to Miles, it has paid off for both players and coaches who have been able to pursue their individual careers.

“In the first five years, how many guys were paid an NBA salary after leaving the program? None of them,” Miles answers. “In the last five years, how many players have been paid an NBA salary after they left the program? Three.”

Miles further explains

“How many coaches left in the last five years? None. How many in the last five years have left to become head coaches of their own programs? Two.”

Miles says that it’s due to Dave Rose’s ability as a coach that these individuals have been able to continue their career.

“Two coaches left his program looking like geniuses and got to coach a Division I program to start their own head coaching opportunities. For anyone to say that he hasn’t accomplished anything in the last five years is insane.”

While this year hasn’t lived up to the expectations that many fans, and even the team may have held, Coach Rose has this young team headed in the right direction. Improvement has been seen on a weekly basis – despite some adversity – the momentary lapses have been limited.

With Coach Rose’s leadership, and a talented core of young players, this group can contend for championships in the years to come.

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