Utah Utes: Turnarounds happen

 

 

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After seeing Utah beat USC and Cal, back-to-back in the Pac-12 tournament, the temptation is to overrate this. Utah is still just 15-17.

But don’t underrate it, either.

Turnarounds happen quickly in basketball.

While it’s rare to see football programs change overnight, a basketball team only needs a couple of guys like, oh, Jordan Loveridge, and things can change  quickly. BYU went 1-25 in 1996-97. Steve Cleveland followed with two losing years (9-21, 12-16) before jumping to 22-11 and 24-9.  So in his third year things took hold.

Stew Morrill went a so-so 15-13 his first year at USU before going on a 12-year streak of winning 23 or more games.

By winning two nights in a row, the Utes have gone from unspeakably bad last year (6-25) to not terrible this year.  Last year Utah won just three conference games, this year five — plus the two tournament wins this week.

Coach Larry Krystkowiak — in his second season — doesn’t have the Utes back to their old Majerus form, but he has them thinking they’re supposed to win games. That in itself is a turnaround of significance.

No matter what happens the rest of the way in the Pac-12 tournament, the Utes should be worth monitoring next season.

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