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KU v. Colorado Preview

Coach: Tad Boyle
Conference: Pac 12
2012-13 Record: 7-1

Starters


#0 Askia Booker, 6’1 Sophomore combo guard
14.1 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 2.8 apg, 1.4 spg, 2.4 to/game, 38.4% fg, 54.2% ft, 35.9% 3pt
Booker is having a solid season and is more of a scoring combo guard than a set-up man. He is a very good athlete who wants to attack off the dribble and is knocking down 35.9% of his long range attempts on the year. He has an excellent mid-range game and is capable of going to both his right and left hand. Booker struggles as a decision maker at times and isn’t looking to pass the ball once he puts it on the floor. On the season he has an assist to turnover ratio of 1.2:1.
#25 Spencer Dinwiddie, 6’5 Sophomore point guard
17.8 ppg, 4.8 rpg, 2.5 apg, 0.9 spg, 1 bpg, 2.1 to/game, 51.5% fg, 74.3% ft, 54.3% 3pt
Dinwiddie had a solid freshman season and has been terrific this year, averaging 17.8 points per game. Dinwiddie is an excellent perimeter shooter, knocking down 54.3% of his attempts this season. He can put the ball on the floor with either hand and averages 9.3 free throw attempts per game. Dinwiddie lacks elite athleticism but has proven to be an outstanding defender, using his length and intelligence to lock down perimeter players. The sophomore plays with a great pace and is always under control. The Jayhawks must keep him off the line and out of the paint in this game.
#23 Sabitino Chen, 6'4 Senior shooting guard
4.5 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 0.9 apg, 0.6 spg, 1.1 to/game, 42.9% fg, 83.3% ft, 22.2% 3pt
Chen is a solid player who struggles as a perimeter shooter and is knocking down only 22.2% of his 3pt field goal attempts (0-11 from long range last year). The senior is capable of attacking the basket off the dribble but he isn’t adept as a passer and struggles to set up teammates. Chen is better going to his left, so expect the Jayhawk defenders to push him to his right hand.
#21 Andre Roberson, 6’7 Junior combo forward
12 ppg, 11.5 rpg, 1.9 apg, 2.4 spg, 1.5 bpg, 2.5 to/game, 49.3% fg, 51.3% ft, 28.6% 3pt
Roberson is a very athletic combo forward with a developing skill set on the perimeter who is being looked at as a potential 1st round pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. He is a capable shooter in catch and shoot situations from the perimeter but is better attacking the basket on straight line drives going to his right. However, he struggles with his ball skills at this point in his career and has an assist to turnover ratio of 0.75:1. He also has struggled from the line, which will be an area to watch if this game is close down the stretch. The area where Roberson is elite is on the glass as he averages 11.5 rebounds per game, including 3 on the offensive end. The Jayhawks must keep Roberson off of the glass in this contest.
#40 Josh Scott, 6’10 Freshman power forward
12 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 0.4 apg, 0.4 spg, 0.6 bpg, 1.3 to/game, 46.3% fg, 77.3% ft
Scott was a highly recruited player with great upside for this Colorado program. He has good length and athleticism which allows him to be an effective rebounder and very good in transition. Scott has range out to 17 feet, uses both hands in the paint, and can score on a jump hook in the post over either shoulder. He does struggle to finish shots through contact and for a player who takes the majority of his shots close to the rim he should have a higher shooting percentage. Scott can put the ball on the floor and will spin, looking to finish at the rim.

Substitutes


#2 Xavier Johnson, 6'6 Freshman small forward
6.6 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 0.4 apg, 0.6 bpg, 1.9 to/game, 57.6% fg, 52.2% ft, 33.3% 3pt
Johnson is another top 100 recruit that is at his best attacking the basket out of the triple threat position. The lefty is also a capable 3pt shooter, knocking down 33.3% of his attempts on the season. Johnson lacks a mid-range game at this time and when he puts the ball down on the floor he can be turnover prone. He is very strong hand dominant that this stage of his career. Defensively, he possesses great length but can be caught out of position away from the basketball.
#3 Xavier Talton, 6’1 Freshman point guard
1.6 ppg, 0.9 rpg, 0.1 apg, 0.3 to/game, 50% fg, 66.7% ft, 50% 3pt
Talton is a young player who brings a scoring mentality to the point guard position. At this stage of his career he is an inconsistent shooter but is solid in the mid-range. Talton can be sped up and forced into turnovers and needs to improve both his willingness and ability to pass the ball. On the season he has an assist to turnover ratio of 0.5:1. Defensively, Talton uses his strength well and does a solid job of defending the ball.
#5 Eli Stalzer, 6’3 Freshman shooting guard
2.5 ppg, 1.1 rpg, 0.4 apg, 0.9 to/game, 58.3% fg, 100% ft, 55.6% 3pt
Stalzer is an outstanding shooter both in catch and shoot situations and coming off of screens. On the season he is knocking down 55.6% of his long range attempts and 75% of his attempts (9-12) have come from beyond the arc. Stalzer isn’t capable of beating defenders off the dribble and struggles with a lack of lateral quickness on the defensive end of the floor.
#15 Shane Harris-Tunks, 6'11 Junior center
1.9 ppg, 1.5 rpg, 0.9 to/game, 33.3% fg, 83.3% ft
Harris-Tunks is a role player for this team who can defend the post and rebound the basketball. On the season the junior is averaging 1.5 rebounds per game in only 9 minutes of game per contest. Harris-Tunks scores primarily in the paint and has range out to 12 feet.
#31 Jeremy Adams, 6’5 Junior shooting guard
1.8 ppg, 0.8 rpg, 0.2 apg, 0.5 to/game, 40% fg, 100% ft
Adams is at his best attacking the basket off the dribble where he does a nice job of getting to the free throw line. The junior really struggles as a perimeter shooter, knocking down just 3-21 long range attempts last year (he is 1-1 this season). Adams isn’t a good passer and struggles to create offense for others, sporting just a 0.33:1 assist to turnover ratio.

Strengths


Free Throw differential
The Buffaloes have been very good at getting to the free throw line this season. They average 29 attempts per game from the line and have a free throw differential of +12.5 which ranks 1st in the Pac 12 Conference.
Perimeter Shooting
Colorado has been very good from beyond the arc this season, connecting on 41.2% of their 3pt field goal attempts as a team, which ranks 2nd in the Pac 12.
3pt Field Goal Defense
The Buffaloes are holding their opponents to a 32.5% mark from beyond the arc, which ranks 4th in the conference. Led by Dinwiddie this is a group that defends the perimeter very well.

Weaknesses


Inexperience
This is a relatively young Colorado team that uses six freshman and sophomores in their rotation. How these young players respond to playing in Allen Fieldhouse for the first time will be interesting to watch.
Turnover Issues
The Buffaloes have struggled to take care of the basketball this season and lack ball movement on the offensive end of the floor at times. They average 13.8 turnovers per game. In addition, they have an assist to turnover ratio of 0.69:1, which ranks last in the Pac 12.

Kansas Keys to the Game


Ball Defense
Colorado scores a number of their points off of the dribble with the ability of Booker in the mid-range game and the ability of Roberson and Dinwiddie in getting to the basket. The Kansas ball defense has been shaky this season and was exposed last weekend against Oregon State. The Jayhawks have to stay in front of the ball in this contest.
Points off of Turnovers
Colorado has struggled with turnovers this season and isn’t a team that passes the ball very well. The Jayhawks average 7.1 steals per game and have the potential to turn mistakes into points very quickly with their ability in transition. If Kansas can get some easy points off of turnovers they should be able to pull out another win over a Pac 12 Conference team.
Free Throw Differential
Colorado has been one of the elite team nationally this season in free throw differential. The Buffs average 29 free throw attempts per game and they have kept their opponents off the line this season, allowing only 16.5 free throw attempts per game for their opponents. The Jayhawks have to be able to get into the paint in their half-court offense both through post entry passes and off the dribble. If Kansas can get to the line through their aggressive play, and at least stay even in free throw differential, then they should be able to hold off the Buffaloes in this game.

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