It didn't start well and it didn't end well, but Colorado won on the road once again beating Stanford 65-63 behind an incredible performance from Andre Roberson. Roberson had a career high 24 points on a ridiculous 9-13 shooting and had 8 rebounds. Although Roberson said he was sick prior to the game, he certainly didn't play like it and brought out his best game of the year given the circumstances. With the win, the Buffs move to 9-6 in the Pac-12 and 19-8 on the year and continue to strengthen their resume for the NCAA Tournament.
Things the Buffaloes did well:
Andre Roberson's game was ridiculous. He was hitting threes, attacking the rim and finishing, and hit key free throws at the end of the game. His defense was close to perfection once again; he helped and recovered effectively, fronted Dwight Powell in the post continuously and limited him to 12 points on 11 shots. Spencer Dinwiddie wasn't as efficient shooting 6-17 from the field, but he added 19 points. He was crucial in both halves as he drove to the hoop consistently. When Colorado couldn't score, he created contact with the opposing bigs and got to the free throw line at times where he shot 6-7.
In the first half, the offensive rebounding was crucial. The Buffaloes had nine offensive rebounds and that helped them stay in the game. Jeremy Adams also provided some timely layups and jumpers. Adams had eight points and four rebounds on the night. Ultimately, winning on the road, especially at this time of the year, is critical and if Andre Roberson and Spencer Dinwiddie continue to lead this team, the Buffaloes could make some noise in late March once again.
Things the Buffaloes struggled with:
The effort to start the game was atrocious. The defense wasn't there as Colorado flat out failed to guard the perimeter and the Buffaloes missed way too many layups. It's much more than a slump for Askia Booker. He provided some offense down the stretch, yet his inability to do anything on defense continues to be a problem. He's late to help; he loses sight of the ball and loses sight of his man; and he fails to constantly be in a good defensive stance.
As a team, the Buffaloes were awful from three, shooting a terrible 4-18 from behind the arc. Colorado also couldn't rebound well defensively against Stanford and gave up 14 offensive rebounds. Down the stretch, the Buffs made it much more difficult than they had to. They were passive on offense trying to run the clock out and let Stanford get back in the game. The Cardinal had a chance to tie or win it late after Dinwiddie missed a free throw. They lucked out, however, as Dwight Powell thought he could hesitate and drive to the hoop from the three point line and dunk in under three seconds.
The Buffaloes play Cal at 3 p.m. MT at Haas Pavilion on Saturday. Colorado has already accomplished what they needed to on this road trip by beating Stanford, yet a win is not out of the question against Cal. Cal is playing the best basketball in the Pac-12 right now and Allen Crabbe and Justin Cobbs have been hard to stop; but, the last time the Buffs played Cal, they did a great job controlling the dynamic backcourt forcing them to take 40 shots to get 43 points.