BYU basketball was picked apart by UT Arlington in the first round of the NIT on March 16, falling to the Mavericks 105-89.
It was a disheartening moment for the shorthanded Cougars, and all of their fans. With a season defined by injuries, youth and missed opportunities, the 2016-17 campaign had the highest highs and lowest lows.
But, with BYU basketball’s season officially over, there’s no better time to reflect on some of the best postseason moments in BYU basketball history.
BYU basketball’s 25-point comeback against Iona
The record for the largest NCAA Tournament comeback is owned by BYU basketball.
The Cougars fought back from a 25-point deficit in the first round of the NCAA tourney in 2012 to defeat Iona 78-72.
Iona entered the game as the top-scoring team in the nation, but Noah Hartsock and Brandon Davies rallied the Cougars. Hartsock scored 16 of his 23 in the second half and Davies scored 18, propelling BYU to the history books.
Cougars advance to Sweet 16 for first time since 1981
The 2010-11 season was one of the best in BYU basketball history. Led by Naismith Player of the Year Jimmer Fredette, the Cougars entered the NCAA Tournament with a school-record 30 victories.
The Cougars were a No. 3 seed in the tourney and bounced Wofford in the first round. In the second round, BYU was squaring off with future conference foe Gonzaga.
Fredette scored 34 points and dished out six assists en route to a 89-67 shellacking of the Zags.
BYU advanced to the Sweet 16 for the first time since 1981. The 1981 squad was led by Danny Ainge.
Ainge goes coast-to-coast in 1981
Speaking of Ainge, his heroics in 1981 will remain etched in BYU fans’ memories forever.
Trailing the Notre Dame Fighting Irish 50-49 with just eight seconds remaining, the Cougars took a timeout to draw up a final play.
Instead, Ainge went off script. Catching the inbound pass, Ainge weaved his way down the court and through the Irish defense to lay the ball in with just two seconds remaining.
Notre Dame would miss a desperation heave, and the Cougars advanced to the Elite Eight for the first – and only – time in program history with the 51-50 win.