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Preview and Predictions For Colorado Buffaloes Basketball

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Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The University of Colorado has never been considered a basketball school, until the past couple of seasons, that is.

The mere thought of the Buffaloes being a national power and maybe going as far as the Elite Eight in the 2014 National Tournament just doesn’t sound logical to NCAA-basketball purists. But coach Tad Boyle built Colorado into a respectable program and the school is having winning basketball. Boyle has had a 69-38 record in his first three seasons with the Buffs and returns four starters. The program has been in the top five of the Pac-12 the last three years.

The team was 21-12 last season and lost to Illinois in the second round of the NCAA tournament.

Boyle has the tools to be a contender in the Pac-12. Colorado will look at 6-foot-6 point guard and possible first-round NBA pick Spencer Dinwiddie to lead the way along with Josh Scott, who scored 15 points and had 11 rebounds, in a season-opening loss to Baylor. Askia Booker will help Colorado’s long game. Boyle is also expecting some freshmen recruits to press hard for playing time and make the Buffaloes a deep team. The depth factor should help Colorado get the mid or high 20s for victories.

The Buffaloes need to play tough teams like Baylor in the non-league part of their schedule to get Colorado ready for the Pac-12 run and a strong ride in the NCAA playoffs. As his team improves, Boyle will see the Buffs take second in the conference and make it through the Sweet 16. They will lose in the Elite Eight, one loss short of making the finals. However, it will be a fun season for the Buffs.

 

John Raffel is a writer for RantSports.comFollow him on Twitter  @JohnCarlRaffel, Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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2014 NCAA Tournament Preview: No. 8 Colorado vs No. 9 Pittsburgh





The Colorado Buffaloes were one of the dark horses for the National Championship early in the season, but an injury to Spencer Dinwiddie halted their dominating stretch of wins. Still managing to secure a No. 8 seed in the South region of the 2014 NCAA Tournament, the Buffaloes will face the also inconsistent No.  9 seed Pittsburgh Panthers on March 20th in a game that features two of college basketball’s biggest wild cards.

Pittsburgh finished fifth in the ACC, but nearly beat the Virginia Cavaliers to advance to the ACC Tournament finals. When Lamar Patterson and Talib Zanna are on, they are a potential Elite Eight team; when they’re off, Pitt wouldn’t make it out of the first round of the NIT. The Panthers have a tournament streak in them, but they have to get off to a confident start.

What to Watch For

Josh Scott is playing extremely well for Colorado; he leads the team in points per game and rebounds since Dinwiddie’s injury. However, the Buffaloes will not win unless someone else steps up. Pittsburgh is an all-around talented team that likes to share the ball; Colorado must disrupt that. Patterson and Zanna will be the least of the Buffaloes’ worries if Pitt gets into a groove early on.

Prediction:

Colorado just isn’t the National Title threat that they were earlier in the season after Dinwiddie’s injury. The Buffaloes are a good team, but don’t look cohesive anymore. On the other hand, Pittsburgh looks like they could be catching on at the right moment. Expect big things from the Panthers in the tournament.

Pittsburgh 70, Colorado 60

Taylor Sturm is a Columnist for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @TSturmRS, like him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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