BYU men’s basketball returns with Cougar Tipoff

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BYU men’s basketball will have their first outing on Oct. 19 with Cougar Tipoff in the Marriott Center at 7 p.m., allowing fans a free first look at the 2018–19 team.

“It’s similar to what we do in practice, where we get to scrimmage against each other and play each other, but it adds a different element when you get to play in front of all our amazing fans,” said Yoeli Childs, junior forward for the Cougars. “We get to show them a little preview for the season.”

Childs described this year’s team as “experienced.” The roster is comprised of two seniors, eight juniors, two sophomores and three freshmen. It is a predominantly older team, a change from the past couple years.

“I think it’s just a very experienced team,” Childs said. “Everyone gets older, stronger, better, and it’s just a group of guys that know what they need to do to be successful this season and in our league. That’s the biggest thing. Everyone knows how to play together, and it’s going to be exciting.”

Childs and his teammates will be divided into two teams that will then play each other with a running clock. Among those teammates will be Nick Emery, a junior guard who took last year off and is suspended from playing in the Cougar’s first nine games of this coming season. Emery will return to play in the team’s 10th game against Utah State University.

“In the tipoff, Nick will actually play,” said head coach Dave Rose. “So (fans) get a chance to see Nick play before we get him back in December.”

A fan fest will be held prior to the game on the concourse of the Marriott Center starting at 5:30 p.m. Anna Killpack, BYU athletics marketing coordinator, said the festivities will include a number of different activities: green screen photo booth, a balloon artist, face painters, BYU women’s basketball running drills, a basketball arcade game, Cosmo coloring pages and giveaways and prizes for completing one or more of these activities.

Killpack said the ROC will also be giving away T-shirts to ROC pass holders and conducting a basketball skills challenge to give away a free bike starting at 5:30 p.m.

“I just want it to be a fan experience kind of activity,” Killpack said. “It’s something free, families can come and enjoy and your basketball fans and Cougar Club members can come and kind of see what the team’s going to be like this year — get to know them a little bit more.”

Killpack said large infographics on each of the players will be displayed on the concourse during the event to allow fans to get to know more information about the players.

Tipoff will be at 7:05 p.m., and halftime will consist of performances from the Cougarettes and Dunk Team, and a Qualtrics half-court shot for $1,000.

Free posters will be available for the team, along with BYU women’s basketball, to sign after the game.

The Marriott Center, like LaVell Edwards Stadium, has adopted a new clear bag policy, delineating what is allowed or prohibited for Cougar Tipoff and any future home game.

BYU applies new clear bag policy to the Marriott Center in addition to LaVell Edwards Stadium. (BYU Athletics creative design)

“There (are) 30 practice days that you have leading up to your first game,” Rose said. “This is just kind of a good change, but also a chance for our guys to play under the lights, put the uniforms on and get a feel for their first time out.”

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