#19 Colorado Men's Basketball 2013-2014 Preview

Colorado Buffaloes

2013-2014 Overall Rank: #19
Conference Rank: #2 Pac-12

Colorado Team Page#19 Colorado Men's Basketball 2013-2014 PreviewBuy Colorado Basketball Tickets

Colorado has made huge strides under Coach Tad Boyle and the switch to the Pac-12 has helped take the program to the next level. The Buffaloes earned a ten seed in the 2013 NCAA Tournament but fell to Illinois in their opener. The goal this year is to make a much deeper run and this group has the talent to do it and Spencer Dinwiddie will lead the way. The versatile 6-6 junior runs the point, but can play anywhere but the five spot. Last season he lead Colorado with 15.3 points and 3.0 assists per game. He is equally comfortable running the show or playing off of the ball and attacking the basket. And few players in the country get to the rim as efficiently as Dinwiddie. The opposition often has little choice but to foul him and Dinwiddie can make them pay at the charity stripe.

2012-13 Record: 21-12, 10-8
2012-13 Postseason: NCAA
Coach: Tad Boyle
Coach Record: 69-38 at Colorado, 125-104 overall

Who’s Out:
However, Colorado is not going to cruise into the NCAA Tournament since Andre Roberson is gone. He left after his junior season to try his luck in the NBA. He was selected 26th overall in the 2013 NBA Draft and while that is going to hurt Colorado in 2013-2014, it is a very promising sign for where the program is headed. For now, the Buffaloes are going to have to do without Roberson’s 10.9 points and 11.2 rebounds per contest. Sabatino Chen is also a significant loss. The guard rarely put up big numbers, but he was a good glue guy. Jeremy Adams and Shane Harris-Tunks, who both averaged about ten minutes per game, are the only other departures.

Who’s In:
Coach Boyle has a quality group of newcomers who will at least add some quality depth across the board. Kevin Nelson, a junior college transfer who spent a year at New Mexico, was injured, again, last season and will finally suit up for the Buffaloes in 2013-2014. Jaron Hopkins is being billed as the next Dinwiddie. The 6-5 incoming freshman is nearly as versatile as his new teammate and Hopkins is ready to play a relatively large role off of the bench. Tre’Shaun Fletcher, Chris Jenkins, George King and Dustin Thomas will hope to find a few minutes at small forward. Thomas has the size to slide up to the four spot as well and that is where Colorado needs help in order to replace Roberson. Redshirt freshman Wesley Gordon spent last season gaining strength and weight. If any of the newcomers are going to come close to replacing Roberson’s production on the glass, it will be Gordon.

Who to Watch:
Gordon will not have to do all of the work in the frontcourt. Josh Scott, a 6-10, 245 pound forward, had a great freshman campaign and is even bigger and stronger now. Scott averaged 10.2 points and 5.7 rebounds, but that was with Roberson by his side. As just a sophomore, Scott will feel the defensive pressure crash in on him. Small forward Xavier Johnson will spend plenty of time on the highlight reel thanks to his leaping ability. Often lost because of Johnson’s dunks is the fact that he is a pretty good shooter. The rest of the Pac-12 better not forget that or Johnson will quickly turn into a consistent double-digit scorer. If Johnson, Gordon and Scott are all starting, Colorado will have very little depth in the paint. Expect Johnson to spend some time at the four spot and Gordon at the five. Other than that, Coach Boyle will have to hope some of those other newcomers besides Gordon can fill in some quality minutes off of the bench.

Final Projection:
Dinwiddie and Johnson can shoot the ball, yet it would be beneficial to find a shooter off of the bench. Askia Booker will be back in the starting lineup despite his inconsistent shooting a year ago. The 6-6 junior took more three-pointers than anybody else on the team in 2012-2013, but knocked down just 31.2 percent of his attempts. Booker is a great talent, although Colorado can struggle offensively when he is having an off shooting night. Xavier Talton and Eli Stalzer both averaged less than ten minutes per game, but when Dinwiddie or Booker need a rest, that is who Colorado called on. As sophomores, they should be more consistent this time around.

Projected Postseason Tournament: NCAA

Projected Starting Five:
Spencer Dinwiddie, Junior, Guard, 15.3 points per game
Askia Booker, Junior, Guard, 12.4 points per game
Xavier Johnson, Sophomore, Forward, 8.9 points per game
Wesley Gordon, Freshman, Forward, DNP last season
Josh Scott, Sophomore, Forward, 10.2 points per game

By the Numbers:
Scoring Offense: 67.6 (164th in nation, 8th in conference)
Scoring Defense: 63.6 (97, 4)
Field-Goal Percentage: 43.3 (174, 9)
Field-Goal Defense: 40.1 (52, 3)
Three-Point Field Goals Per Game: 5.4 (254, 7)  
Three-Point Field-Goal Percentage: 34.4 (142, 7)
Free-Throw Percentage: 68.6 (202, 9)
Rebound Margin: 3.3 (78, 4)
Assists Per Game: 9.9 (328, 12)
Turnovers Per Game: 13.3 (183, 9)

Madness 2014 NBA Draft Rankings:
#11 Spencer Dinwiddie
#106 Josh Scott

Madness 2013 Men’s Basketball Recruit Rankings:
#114 Tre'shaun Fletcher
#123 Jaron Hopkins


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