Colorado Gets Robbed By Officials Against Arizona But Missed Free-Throws Still a Concern

By David LaRose
Casey Saplo- USA TODAY Sports

If the Pac 12 opener between Colorado and Arizona is any indication this matchup will be a rivalry for years to come.

Colorado was up by as many as 17 points in the second half but eventually lost in overtime to No. 3 Arizona 92-83. The Buffs thought they had won the game in regulation on a Sabatino Chen 3-pointer at the buzzer but they were robbed by the officials. The referees took multiple looks at the replay on the monitors courtside and eventually reversed the call on the court saying that the ball was not out of his hands in time as the clock read 0’s

Take a look at this picture and make the call yourselves:

Twitter: Rob Dauster

It looks like the ball was out of his hands and even if the refs couldn’t clearly tell if it was out of his hands or not they should have counted the bucket due to inconclusive video evidence.

Regardless of whether or not the basket should have counted Colorado let this game slip away when they should have won. One of the main culprits in Colorado’s loss, besides the blown call, was the fact that Colorado was abysmal from the free-throw line. The Buffs shot just 17-29 on the night and when they were outscored 10-2 over the final 1:35 of regulation they missed four of their six attempts.

In that final 1:35 of regulation Josh Scott missed one of two with 1:13 left (79-74), Spencer Dinwiddie made one of two with :44 left (80-76) and Jeremy Adams missed two free-throws with under :27 left (80-78). The span of missed free throws set up the final play, which in reality should not have been needed to decide this game.

Tad Boyle has always said that free-throw shooting is a personal part of a player’s game and that they have to work on that on their own. Over the course of the past two years Colorado has lost at least two games, and probably should have lost another two, due to poor free-throw shooting. Last year they lost to Colorado State by one point after missing 16 free-throws and tonight they missed 12 from the charity stripe. Earlier this season they upset Baylor but they easily could have lost as they shot just 4-18 from the free-throw line.

It was really only a matter of time until Colorado’s poor free-throw shooting cost them a game, it was just a shame that this was the game that did them in. Overall, Colorado deserved to upset Arizona but the blown call at the end and the poor free-throw shooting is what cost them in the end.

David LaRose is one of the featured College Basketball writers for Rant Sports covering the Pac 12 and the University of Colorado. He’s also a member of the U.S. Basketball Writer’s Association of America. You can follow him on Twitter or check out his Facebook page

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