Colorado struggled tremendously in the first half and their second half resurgence wasn't enough as the Buffaloes fell to Arizona 79-69. For the Buffaloes, Spencer Dinwiddie finished with 18 points and Andre Roberson had a strong performance in his second game back from illness as he added 15 points and 11 rebounds. Unlike last year, Colorado didn't need to win four games in four days to get to the NCAA Tournament. They've done enough this year and should hear their name on Selection Sunday.
Things the Buffaloes did well:
Colorado played some spectacular basketball in the last ten minutes of the second half. Down 54-40, the Buffaloes turned it around and cut the deficit to as little as two. Dinwiddie started to get to the free throw line where he went 9-of-10 and created for others. The team defense was active as they hedged ball screens and recovered and switched when they needed to. The Buffaloes were persistent and finally forced Arizona to take some tough shots holding the Wildcats to shoot 9-of-27 from behind the arc for the game.
Andre Roberson by far had the best game out of any Colorado player. Not only did he have 15 points and 11 rebounds, but six of them came on the offensive side of the ball as he constantly crashed the boards. Roberson guarded Solomon Hill and although Hill had 13 points, he needed 13 shots to get there. Surprisingly, Ben Mills was effective in the five minutes he played in the first half. Shane Harris-Tunks left the game with an injury and Mills played about as great as he could have and picked up two rebounds. Jeremy Adams had another good game off the bench. He added four points, was in down the stretch in place of Josh Scott, and logged 23 minutes.
Things the Buffaloes struggled with:
The first half was terrible. Colorado went 5-of-12 from the free throw line and committed 10 turnovers in the first 20 minutes. Arizona guards attacked the rim at will either laying it off to the bigs, finishing, or driving and kicking for threes. The Wildcats came out ready to play and the Buffaloes did the exact opposite. Colorado had no answer for Nick Johnson as he scored 18 points and went 6-of-7 from the field. Johnson also limited Spencer Dinwiddie from scoring as Dinwiddie went 4-of-12 from the field. Arizona also simply had too much of an inside presence as Josh Scott couldn't match Kaleb Tarczewski down low. Ultimately, Arizona's defensive pressure and overall play was too much for the Buffaloes and they showed why they were at one point considered the best team in the conference today.
Individually, Sabatino Chen had one of his worst games of the season as he committed four turnovers in only 11 minutes.
This team is no stranger to disappointment on Selection Sunday, but the Buffaloes have done enough to warrant an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament. They could end up being anywhere from a nine to 12 seed, but the bottom line is that they more than likely will be in the field of 68.