The first time BYU was scheduled to play at Pepperdine, on New Year’s Eve, the Cougars found out the game was postponed — due to COVID-19 issues with the Waves — 30 minutes into their flight to Southern California and the pilot had to turn the plane around.
In the makeup game in Malibu, BYU got all turned around, especially in the second half, before falling 76-73 to Pepperdine on a wacky Wednesday. The Cougars lost their rhythm late in the game.
Certainly, it’s not normal to play a contest tipping off at noon Pacific Standard Time on a Wednesday.
“I don’t think any of us would have chosen this schedule. It’s a replacement game; it’s a COVID game,” said coach Mark Pope. “I think there’s a volleyball conflict tonight (at Pepperdine). When we did the replacement game originally, we were thinking that Wednesday would be better than Thursday because it would have given us two days of prep before our Saturday game (against San Francisco), which is canceled. … Clearly, that didn’t work in either circumstance. It was a pretty bad call on my part in terms of scheduling.”
Forward Kolby Lee said Wednesday’s game was strange for more than one reason.
“It’s the first one of the year for us — a noon game. That was definitely different. And we played the same team that we just played on Saturday. It’s a very quick turnaround. We’re definitely not used to (an early) game. But (Pepperdine) had to do the same thing.”