Jimmer Fredette Makes People Take Notice, Scores 49

Matthew DuffContributor IDecember 29, 2009

PHILADELPHIA - MARCH 19:  Jimmer Fredette #32 of the Brigham Young Cougars drives against Dash Harris #5 of the Texas A&M Aggies during the first round of the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament at the Wachovia Center on March 19, 2009 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Add Jimmer Fredette to the chorus of fans, coaches, administrators and analysts who are crying out for a little respect.

Much like TCU, Fredette didn't just pen a letter to the powers that be. He let his actions speak louder than his words.

He erupted for 49 points, nine assists and seven  rebounds to lead unranked (for the time being) Brigham Young University to a convincing 99-69 win over the Arizona Wildcats Monday night.

Fredette went 9-for-13 on three-point attempts and 16-for-23 overall. It was the highest point total in Mckale Center and BYU history. 

However, as impressive as the stat sheet was for Fredette, it was really a team effort that catapulted BYU past Arizona. Strong shooting by Tyler Haws and Jackson Emery have BYU sitting at 13-1 with their only loss coming at Utah State's hostile home court.

As surprising as BYU's seemingly unsustainable shooting accuracy has been, what may be a bigger surprise is how they have become a lock down defensive team. Other than a high-scoring Nevada game, BYU has been getting lots of buckets from the energy started with defensive stops. 

BYU is calling for a little attention to the Mountain West Conference much like TCU was doing this football season by absolutely dominating on both defense and offense.

BYU has always been able to score, much like the Phoenix Suns and Golden State Warriors in the NBA, but unlike their ounterparts, Brigham Young has also looked sharp on defense this year. Maybe the new found ability to defend will have BYU making some noise in the NCAA tournament. 

Letters are written, comment boards are inundated, and analysts' articles cry for fairness. Yet, it does not come. With the recent slight against TCU and Boise State by pitting them against each other, we may start to wonder if it ever will.

But when the Mountain West Conference wins convincing bowl games against their PAC-10 foes, and BYU basketball beats Pac-10 schools Arizona and Arizona St. by a whopping 43 combined points, you wonder how much longer the disparity can last.

How many more dominating performances will Mountain West member schools have to put up before people take note? 

Fredette's performance was stunning on an individual level. But it speaks further to what a conference is doing. It is another notch on the Mountain West Conference's bedpost of conquest against the supposedly bigger foes.

When the Top 25 is voted on next week, surely analysts will pause a moment on the score of this game and Fredette's stunning statistical line and take note. 

The sports world is on notice. The Mountain West Conference is on a quest for recognition and reward.

You may not have known who the kid from small town New York was before this game. You do now. You may not respect the Mountain West Conference, but you soon will.

They are making you, one performance at a time.