Colorado Goes Ice Cold in Road Loss to Red-Hot Cal

Ron Chenoy- USA TODAY Sports

Colorado had a massive opportunity in front of them on Saturday at Cal,  a chance to earn a sweep of the Pac 12 Bay Area teams, but a season-worst shooting performance never gave them a chance.

In the 62-46 loss, the Buffaloes shot 26% in the first half, which was a season worst shooting percentage in a half for Colorado but it got even worse in the second half. Stingy defense and poor shot selection added up to a 22% shooting performance and it all culminated with a season low 23% from the field overall.

Give credit where credit is due Cal played tremendous defense but Colorado had a bevy of good looks in the first half that just would not fall. If not for their solid defense on the other end Colorado would have been down by more than the four they were at halftime. The second half was more of the same, Colorado struggling to score while not getting to any loose balls, and it eventually snowballed into a 16 point loss.

When Colorado is at their best guard Spencer Dinwiddie is extremely aggressive but he was mostly passive on Saturday, only getting to the free throw line twice. For the most part the entire Colorado team was rather passive, settling for outside jumpers instead of attacking the rim. If the shots aren’t falling driving to the basket seemed like a logical solution but Colorado never adjusted and the game got out of reach.

Dinwiddie had an off night, Andre Roberson was offensively ineffective and Askia Booker stayed in his month long offensive slump and it ultimately resulted in their lowest scoring output of the season. Their best offensive weapon was Xavier Johnson, who was the only Colorado player to score in double figures, but even he only went 4-14 from the field.

It was a disappointing end to their road trip but Colorado still has plenty to play for in the final week of the regular season. They return home to face the two Oregon teams with a chance to total over 20 wins for the third season in a row, something they have never done before in the history of the program. Their chances at a fourth place finish, and a first round bye at the Pac 12 tournament, are likely gone now but heading into the postseason with some momentum will be key for a team as young as Colorado is.

Ultimately a split on the road is what Colorado had to settle for but their postseason hopes still remain in good shape as Selection Sunday looms just two weeks away.

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David LaRose is a College Basketball writer for Rant Sports covering the Pac 12 and the University of Colorado. He’s also a member of the USBWA. You can follow him on Twitter or check out his Facebook page.

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