Colorado's Andre Roberson was out with mono, but that didn't stop the Buffaloes from dominating No. 19 Oregon tonight as they won 76-53. Colorado out-rebounded Oregon and forced the Ducks to struggle on offense all night. It was the first performance of the year from the Buffaloes where every player contributed as the bench totaled 16 points and provided a big lift in the first half when Colorado's starters were in foul trouble. Xavier Johnson led the way for Colorado with 22 points and Spencer Dinwiddie added 17. With the victory, Colorado moves to 10-7 in the Pac-12.
Things the Buffaloes did well:
This is up there with the Arizona game as the most complete game Colorado has played in the conference all year. The defense never relented forcing tough shots and they let that effort fuel their transition game as the Buffaloes never stopped looking to get out and run. The Ducks certainly didn't play well, but the Buffaloes were active and energetic on defense the entire night and didn't make it easy. Colorado limited Oregon to 37 percent shooting from the field and 16 percent from three. They chased through screens throughout the game and caused sloppy ball movement as Oregon committed 15 turnovers.
Offensively, the Buffaloes were effective and agressive. The ball movement was constant setting up post opportunities and Colorado was driving and kicking all night. The Buffs shot 48 percent from the field, shot 41 percent from three and 79 percent from the free throw line. The bench was unexpectedly amazing. Xavier Talton continues to play well and added three points and two assists. Jeremy Adams has been consistent off the bench for a while now and he had seven points and two rebounds.
As far as the starters go, Spencer Dinwiddie and Xavier Johnson were crucial. In Roberson's absence, Johnson needed to have a big game and he did. He didn't miss, going 7-7 from the field and 3-3 from behind the arc. By far, Xavier Johnson has improved the most this year. He showed his versatility once again as he scored on the fast break, threatened in the post, and stretched the defense with his perimeter shooting. Dinwiddie bounced back after a lackadaisical performance against Cal. He did his usual attacking, but managed to distribute and affect the game on the glass with seven rebounds and six assists. As long as Dinwiddie plays the way he has been facilitating and driving to the hoop, the Buffs will continue to be hard to beat.
The lone senior, Sabatino Chen, had a great performance back in the starting lineup. Chen contributed with six points and three rebounds, and his effort never stopped as he dribbled in the lane and knocked down a floater and added some nice layups. Askia Booker is still struggling offensively, but he was effective in other parts of the game against the Ducks. His defense was much better than usual and he had six rebounds and contributed 11 points.
Ultimately, this was one of the most impressive performances Colorado has had all year as they were in control of the entire game and got contributions from every player on the team.
Things the Buffaloes struggled with:
Colorado didn't struggle with anything at the Coors Event Center against Oregon tonight.
Colorado plays Oregon St. at 2:30 p.m. MT on Saturday. This shouldn't be a letdown game as Oregon St. is a really bad team. If the Buffaloes put forth a defensive effort close to what they did tonight, they should come out with a win on senior day.