Colorado Basketball – September/October – 2020

October 29th

… CU in the Arena … 

Pac-12 announces weekly conference pairings; CU to open at Arizona on December 2nd 

From … The Pac-12 Conference has announced weekly matchups and site designations for the league’s inaugural 20-game men’s basketball schedule in 2020-21.

The announcement reflects the games being played and the home/away designations each week of the Pac-12 regular season. Specific dates and times for each game within a week will be announced after selections by the league’s television partners are finalized. All 120 Conference games will be televised by either Pac-12 Network, ESPN/2/U, FOX/FS1 or CBS.

Colorado will open at Arizona on Wednesday, Dec. 2 and host Washington State on Saturday, Dec. 5. Several previously announced early season Pac-12 dates were adjusted to allow for flexibility in non-conference scheduling with the push back of the NCAA start of season date to Nov. 25, but the Buffaloes’ two games remained intact.

Colorado will resume Pac-12 play the week of Dec. 30-Jan.3 on the road at the Southern California schools. The Buffaloes then return to Boulder for very home-heavy month.

Beginning with Oregon/Oregon State the week of Jan. 6-10, Colorado will play four-straight and seven-of-nine at the CU Events Center. When Cal and Stanford visit Boulder the week of Jan. 13-17, it will mark the first time in 60 years (1960-61), the Buffaloes will have played four-straight conference home games.

Following a trip to the Washington schools the week of Jan. 20-24, Colorado returns for three more at home; a single date with Utah (Jan. 27-31) and the Arizona schools that next week (Feb. 3-7).

The flip side is, for the second-straight year Colorado will finish the Pac-12 schedule with five-of-seven on the road, including the even-rarer four-game conference road trip. The Buffaloes return trips to the Bay Area (Feb. 10-14) and the Oregon schools (Feb. 17-21) in successive weeks. It will be the first time Colorado has played four-straight conference road games since 1946-47, the Buffs’ final year in the Mountain States Conference.

Colorado will close the home portion of its Pac-12 schedule with UCLA and USC the week of Feb. 24-28. For the second-straight season – and third time in five years – The Buffaloes will finish with a single game at Utah on either March 6 or 7.

The 2021 Pac-12 Men’s Basketball Tournament is scheduled for T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas from March 10-13.

All basketball competitions will be conducted in accordance with the Pac-12 COVID-19 Medical Advisory Committee health and safety recommendations and guidelines, as previously announced on September 24 when the Pac-12 CEO Group voted to resume football, basketball and winter sport seasons . The weekly matchups have been designed to allow for flexibility should a need arise for rescheduled contests.

Wed., Dec. 2, 2020 – Colorado at Arizona; Oregon State at Washington State
Thurs., Dec. 3, 2020 – Arizona State at California; Washington at Utah
Sat., Dec. 5, 2020 – Washington State at Colorado
Sun., Dec. 6, 2020 – California at UCLA
Sat., Dec. 12, 2020 – Oregon at Washington*
Sun., Dec. 13, 2020 – Stanford at USC*
Sat., Dec. 19, 2020 – Arizona at Stanford
Sun., Dec. 20, 2020 – USC at Oregon State*
Tues., Dec. 22, 2020 – Utah at Arizona State*
Wed., Dec. 23, 2020 – UCLA at Oregon*
* – Adjusted from original date

Week of Dec. 30-Jan. 3

Arizona/Arizona State at Washington/Washington State
California/Stanford at Oregon/Oregon State
Colorado/Utah at UCLA/USC

Week of Jan. 6-10
Oregon/Oregon State at Colorado/Utah
UCLA/USC at Arizona/Arizona State
Washington/Washington State at California/Stanford

Week of Jan. 13-17
Arizona/Arizona State at Oregon/Oregon State
California/Stanford at Colorado/Utah
Washington/Washington State at UCLA/USC

Week of Jan. 20-24
Arizona at Arizona State
Colorado/Utah at Washington/Washington State
Oregon State at Oregon
UCLA/USC at California/Stanford

Week of Jan. 27-31
California/Stanford at Arizona/Arizona State
Oregon/Oregon State at UCLA/USC
Utah at Colorado
Washington State at Washington

Week of Feb. 3-7
Arizona/Arizona State at Colorado/Utah
Stanford at California
Washington/Washington State at Oregon/Oregon State

Week of Feb. 10-14
Colorado/Utah at California/Stanford
Oregon/Oregon State at Arizona/Arizona State
UCLA/USC at Washington/Washington State

Week of Feb. 17-21
Arizona/Arizona State at UCLA/USC
California/Stanford at Washington/Washington State
Colorado/Utah at Oregon/Oregon State

Week of Feb. 24-28
Oregon/Oregon State at California/Stanford
UCLA/USC at Colorado/Utah
Washington/Washington State at Arizona/Arizona State

Week of March 6/7
Arizona State at Arizona
California at Stanford
Colorado at Utah
Oregon at Oregon State
Washington at Washington State


October 28th

… CU in the Arena … 

Tad Boyle: “This team is only going to be as good as our veterans are”

From … It’s no secret that Colorado coach Tad Boyle very much likes his latest recruiting class.

Consisting of four freshmen and a graduate transfer, the group could turn out to be one of the best Boyle has assembled in his tenure in Boulder — so talented, in fact, that some of those freshmen might not be around for their entire eligibility at CU.

That, at least, is the judgment of Buffs senior guard McKinley Wright IV.

“This is one of the better recruiting classes that Colorado has ever had, including my class,” Wright said. “This freshman class, they have a lot of pieces, a lot of dudes I don’t think will be here for four years. We’ve got some dudes that can hoop.”

The group includes 6-8 freshman forwards Jabari Walker and Tristan da Silva, 6-7 freshman shooting guard Luke O’Brien, and 6-5 freshman guard Nique Clifford, along with 6-7 grad transfer Jeriah Horne. It is a talented group that could see several become significant contributors this season.

But Boyle has also made it clear that his squad’s fortunes will still depend on its upperclassmen and their leadership. If the Buffs are going to win — especially early in the season — they will need their leaders to be the driving force, both in games and in practice.

“Critical — really critical,” was Boyle’s response when asked about the importance of his team leaders and their influence. “This team is only going to be as good as our veterans are. I think our freshmen are really talented. They are going to help us at times. They’re going to fill a lot of holes and they’re going to be great players as their careers progress. But we’re not in a position where we can rely on those freshmen to win games.”

There is certainly no lack of veteran leadership on the roster, beginning with Wright, an All-Pac-12 player and national awards candidate. As the point guard and quarterback, Wright has the ability to set the tone and direction of the team.

But it is more than Wright. Returning starters D’Shawn Schwartz,  Dallas Walton and Evan Battey also have the ability and experience to direct the younger players, as do seniors Maddox Daniels and Alex Strating and junior Eli Parquet.

Their tasks are to set examples in practice and make sure the newcomers know the expectations of the program. It is something Boyle has been stressing with his upperclassmen since practice began.

“It’s one thing for (newcomers) to hear it from the coaching staff and coming out of my mouth or assistant coaches’ mouths,” Boyle said. “But it’s a totally different thing when they hear it coming from McKinley or Evan or D’Shawn or Dallas … one of our veteran guys. They have to really have their voices heard.”

It is particularly important as Boyle makes sure the newcomers understand the culture of the program and it’s foundational principles — beginning with defense and rebounding.

“Right now, a lot of our new guys are new to the program so they don’t understand what Colorado basketball is about yet,” Boyle said. “But I think they’re learning.”

Continue reading story here


October 25th

… CU in the Arena … 

NCAA hits Arizona with nine allegations of misconduct; including lack of institutional control

From The Athletic … The University of Arizona was served with nine allegations of misconduct, five of which are classified as Level I violations, in the Notice of Allegations that the NCAA sent to the school on Oct. 21, The Athletic has learned. The Level I allegations, which fall in the most serious category, include a lack of institutional control and failure to monitor by the university; a lack of head coach control by men’s basketball coach Sean Miller; and a lack of head coach control by Augie Busch, the women’s swimming and diving coach.

The details of the NOA were included in a letter to the NCAA from Arizona’s outside counsel, Paul Kelly, requesting that the school’s infractions case be referred to the newly created Independent Accountability Resolution Process. On Friday, Arizona released a statement acknowledging it had received a Notice of Allegations. Busch’s involvement in the case has not been previously reported.

In his letter requesting the referral, Kelly notes the nine allegations are greater than the number of violations alleged in any of the cases that have emerged as a result of the investigation into college basketball conducted by the U.S. Attorney of the Southern District of New York.

One of the aggravating factors listed in the NOA is the refusal of former assistant coaches Book Richardson and Mark Phelps to speak with the NCAA’s investigators after they were dismissed by the school. The NCAA argued in the NOA that Arizona “compromised the integrity of the investigation and failed to cooperate.” Kelly characterizes this as “adversarial posturing” and writes that Arizona “strenuously denies this allegation and intends to establish that this claim is unfounded.”

Continue reading story here (subscription required) …


October 21st 

… CU in the Arena … 

Addition of Keeshawn Barthelemy may give CU its best backcourt tandem in years

From … Colorado coach Tad Boyle believes point guard McKinley Wright IV can become more of a scorer this year for the Buffaloes.

Given that Wright led the Buffs in scoring last year, averaging 14.4 points per game, that might sound like a tall order.

But Boyle has big plans for his senior standout — and he just may have the personnel to make Wright an even bigger weapon on the offensive end. If that comes to fruition, Colorado could be a very good team and Wright could find himself in the conversation for some national awards by season’s end.

Almost since the day he arrived on campus, Wright has been the man with the ball in his hands, directing the Buffaloes’ offense. But with redshirt freshman Keeshawn Barthelemy added to the lineup this year, Wright could have the opportunity to play off the ball on occasion, and that would open up scoring opportunities he hasn’t previously enjoyed as the team’s full-time “quarterback.”

It could also give the Buffs maybe the best backcourt tandem they have had in Boyle’s tenure in Boulder.

“Those guys in the backcourt will be able to play off each other very, very well,” Boyle said recently. “One of the things I love about (Barthelemy) is his ability in the open floor. He’s got different gears. He can get from Point A to Point B very quickly — probably faster than any player on our team. If we can get him in space in transition, he’s a dynamic player. He can make plays for himself as well as for teammates.”

Barthelemy landed in Boulder via a piece of recruiting wizardry by the Buffs late in the summer of 2019. A highly sought guard from Montreal, the general consensus was that he would spend a year in prep school before signing a college offer. But the Buffs offered him a chance to spend a year in Boulder developing as a redshirt, and he jumped at the opportunity.

Now, he could give the Buffs a terrific 1-2 backcourt punch, and Wright has become one of his biggest fans.

Continue reading story here


October 16th

… CU in the Arena …

NCAA grants extra year of eligibility to all winter sports

Note … While McKinley Wright is certainly off to the NBA after this season, this ruling could make a difference for the Buffs, as Maddox Daniels, D’Shawn Schwartz, Alex Strating and Dallas Walton could all potentially return for the 2021-22 season … 

From ESPN … All winter athletes in NCAA Division I sports will be given an additional year of eligibility, and all football programs will be allowed to compete in bowl games — regardless of their records — as part of one-time rule changes in response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The NCAA’s Division I Council voted to approve both measures this week during its annual meetings. Council chair Grace Calhoun, the athletic director at Penn, said the council wanted to provide as much opportunity and flexibility to athletes as possible amid the uncertainty hanging over this year of college sports.

In a normal year, college football teams need a .500 record to qualify for a postseason game. Calhoun said the council decided to drop that requirement in 2020 to “continue the theme of providing maximum flexibility.”

NCAA rule-makers previously voted to allow all spring sport athletes and fall sport athletes to maintain a year of eligibility, no matter what portion of their season was impacted by the pandemic. The same rule will apply for any athlete who participates in a sport in the upcoming winter season. Calhoun said the council didn’t want athletes opting to redshirt this year because of fears that their seasons might be cut short or otherwise negatively impacted by the pandemic.

“We felt it was important to make this decision now so student-athletes had the peace of mind to go into this season and compete,” Calhoun told ESPN on Wednesday. “They know they can regain that eligibility and have their clock automatically extended, so they’re not taking that chance on the front end if they choose to compete.”

Continue reading story here


October 14th 

… CU in the Arena …

March Madness returning to Denver in 2023 and 2025

From the Daily Camera … March Madness is coming back to the Mile High City.

Denver on Wednesday was named a host city for the first and second rounds of the 2023 and 2025 NCAA men’s basketball tournaments, the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee announced. The games will be played at Pepsi Center and hosted by the Mountain West Conference.

This will be the sixth and seventh times Pepsi Center will have housed men’s tournament games. The arena hosted first- and second-round matches in 2004, 2008, 2011 and 2016, and will host the West Regional in 2021. It was also the site of the 2012 women’s Final Four.

The NCAA unveiled more than 450 host sites for a variety of championships from 2022-23 season through the 2025-26 season.

Other announced host sites in Colorado include the 2022 and 2024 D-II men’s and women’s cross country regionals (Washington Park in Denver), 2022 and 2026 men’s ice hockey regionals (Budweiser Events Center in Loveland), 2023 and 2025 men’s and women’s outdoor track and field championships (Neta and Eddie DeRose ThunderBowl in Pueblo), 2023 women’s gymnastics regionals (Magness Arena in Denver) and 2024 men’s and women’s skiing championships (Steamboat Resort and Howelsen Hill in Steamboat Springs).


October 9th

… CU in the Arena … 

Details of Little Apple Classic released

From … Colorado will tip off the 2020-21 men’s basketball with a trip to Manhattan, Kan., and participate in the inaugural Little Apple Classic on Wednesday and Friday, Nov. 25 and 27.  The field will include old conference foe and host Kansas State, South Dakota State and Drake.

The Buffs will face South Dakota State on Wednesday and renew the old rivalry with Kansas State on Friday, the first time the Buffs and Wildcats have met in nearly a decade.

Ticket information, tip times and television will be released by Kansas State at a later date.

“Obviously we’re excited to come up with an alternative to our Fort Myers Tournament that did not work out,” CU coach Tad Boyle said. “Our proximity to Kansas State, along with South Dakota State and Drake, who was on our schedule to begin with, the fact we can all get to Manhattan on short flights or a bus trip, we can travel safely and open up the season with two quality opponents.”

The Buffs were slated to play in the Fort Myers Tip-Off on November 25-27, but the tournament altered the dates in September and it no longer became feasible for CU to participate.

South Dakota State captured a share of the Summit League regular season title last season with a 22-10 overall record, including a 13-3 mark in conference play, under first-year coach Eric Henderson.   It will be the fourth meeting between the two schools dating back to 1978 and the Buffs hold a 3-0 advantage.  The last time they met, the two played a double-overtime game that the Buffs won 112-103 on Dec. 15, 2017 at the CU Events Center.  Then freshman McKinley Wright IV led six Buffs in double-figures with his first career 30-point game and was just one rebound shy of a triple-double with 30 points, 11 assists and nine rebounds.

This will be the 144th meeting between the Buffs and Kansas State and first since the second round of the 2011 Big 12 Conference Tournament.  In Tad Boyle‘s first season, the Buffs last in the Big 12, the Buffs swept all three match-ups against the Wildcats, something the program hadn’t accomplished in seven years at the time.  CU’s last trip to Manhattan and Bramlage Coliseum was a 74-66 win on Jan. 12, 2011.  The game in Boulder was much closer, a 58-56 CU win on Feb. 12, 2011, and the Buffs won in the tournament, 87-75.  K-State leads the all-time series 96-47 overall and 54-11 in Manhattan.

In Boyle’s first season, Levi Knutson paced the Buffs in the first game in Manhattan with a 20-point performance and added 16 in the second game in Boulder just one point behind Cory Higgins’ team high of 17 points.  In the conference tournament, Higgins (28) and Alec Burks (24) combined for 52 of the team’s 87 points as the Buffs advanced to the semifinals.

The remainder of the non-conference season and complete conference schedule will be released in the coming weeks.


October 2nd

… CU in the Arena … 

Tad Boyle: Non-conference scheduling this year the “wild, wild West”

From the Daily Camera … The Pac-12 Conference still doesn’t have a football schedule. At this rate, maybe the basketball schedule will come into focus first.

Earlier this week, Colorado men’s basketball coach Tad Boyle told BuffZone his team is tentatively scheduled to open the 2020-21 season at a multi-team event hosted by Kansas State. With teams scrambling to fill potential nonconference games amid the COVID-19 pandemic, expect more programs to attempt cobbling together regional multi-team events in hopes of filling a 27-game schedule.

Two weeks ago, the NCAA Division I Council approved a maximum of 27 games for the 2020-21 basketball season, with teams allowed 25 regular season games along with a two-game multi-team event or 24 regular season games with a three-game multi-team event. Squads unable to find a spot in any MTE bracket can schedule 25 games overall.

On Friday, CBS Sports’ Jon Rothstein reported that Washington State is looking to put together its own four-team, two-game multi-team event. “Scheduling for everybody is like the wild, wild west,” Boyle said, and the ability to coordinate testing protocols among regional foes in order to field a multi-team event is likely to become more prevalent as teams attempt to finalize schedules in the coming weeks.

The two-game, four team event at Kansas State is expected to include a pair of mid-major teams in addition to the Buffs and the host Wildcats. The first game will be held on college basketball’s opening night of Nov. 25, with the finale on Nov. 27. If the Buffs tip off against KSU, it will mark the teams’ first matchup since CU left the Big 12 Conference 10 years ago.

Continue reading story here


October 1st

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs cancel Florida tournament trip; K-State likely opener

From the Daily Camera … Whatever the schedule ultimately looks like for the Colorado men’s basketball team, it will not include a trip to Florida.

On Wednesday, head coach Tad Boyle confirmed the Buffaloes have withdrawn from the Fort Myers Tip-Off, the multi-team event in Florida that had assured the Buffs of at least one game against either Wisconsin or Butler. CU was scheduled to open the tournament against South Florida in Fort Myers, with a home game also set to be tied to the event.

While the Buffs will not be traveling to Florida, tentative plans are in place for CU to open the season with a two-game multi-team event hosted by Kansas State. Additionally, in regards to the rivalry game against Colorado State, Boyle has talked with CSU coach Niko Medved and said, “The Colorado State game will be played.”

Although Florida governor Ron DeSantis earlier this week made a controversial decision ordering his state’s economy to completely reopen despite spiking coronavirus numbers, Boyle said the decision to withdraw from the Fort Myers Tip-Off was less about health concerns than a simple schedule crunch.

The Buffs were set to play South Florida on Nov. 23 in Fort Myers, followed by the game against either Wisconsin or Butler two days later. But two weeks ago, the Division I Council settled on Nov. 25 as the start date for the 2020-21 season, so the Fort Myers tourney has been eyeing a later start. Boyle said his team was facing the prospect of facing either Butler or Wisconsin on Nov. 30 in Florida, then traveling directly to Tucson to open Pac-12 play at Arizona on Dec. 2.

Continue reading story here


September 29th

… CU in the Arena … 

Andy Katz first NCAA tournament projections: CU a No. 11 seed

From … College hoops is almost back and it’s time for our first look ahead to what the 2021 NCAA tournament field might look like. The season begins Nov. 25 and basketball expert Andy Katz has released his first projected bracket for 2021 March Madness.

Here are his top 10 seeds, or first ten in, which be breaks down on this week’s March Madness 365 podcast:

  1. Gonzaga
  2. Baylor
  3. Villanova
  4. Illinois
  5. Iowa
  6. Wisconsin
  7. Virginia
  8. Kansas
  9. Kentucky
  10. Tennessee

As we all know, there aren’t just 10 teams in the NCAA tournament, so let’s break down the rest of Katz’s preseason March Madness field:

From the Pac-12 … 

  • 4 seed—ASU
  • 5 seed—UCLA
  • 6 seed—Stanford
  • 7 seed—Oregon
  • 11 seed—Colorado 
  • First Four Out: Utah
  • Next Four Out: Arizona

Read full story here


September 28th

… CU in the Arena … 

Tyler Bey one of nine Pac-12 players to participate in NBA “Virtual Combine”

From … Former Colorado Buffaloes standout Tyler Bey will be one of 61 players participating in the NBA’s “Virtual Combine” ahead of the Nov. 18 NBA Draft.

Last season’s Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year, Bey elected to forego his senior year at Colorado and make himself available for the draft. A first-round projection in a number of mock drafts, Bey last season won the conference rebounding title with a 9.0 average, and he also led Colorado in shooting percentage (.530), streals (1.5 per game) and blocked shots (1.2 bpg), while also finishing second on the team in scoring at 13.7 points per game.

According to an NBA press release, “NBA Draft Combine 2020 will give players the opportunity to participate in league and team interviews, both conducted via videoconference from Sept. 28 through Oct. 16. Players will also take part in an individual on-court program consisting of strength and agility testing, anthropometric measurements, shooting drills and a ‘Pro Day’ video, all conducted in October at the NBA team facility nearest to a player’s home or interim residence.  Medical testing and examinations will be performed by NBA-affiliated physicians in the same market.”

The NBA will conduct interviews with each player answering the same set of 10 questions, and that video will be made available to all 30 teams. Beginning Oct. 1, teams may conduct direct 30-minute interviews with players, with each team allowed to interview a maximum of 20 players and each player limited to 13 total interviews.

Bey is one of nine Pac-12 players to participate in the combine. The others are Arizona’s Josh Green, Nico Mannion and Zeke Nnaji; Washington’s Jaden McDaniels and Isaiah Stewart; Washington State’s CJ Elleby; Oregon’s Payton Pritchard; and Stanford’s Tyrell Terry.

Continue reading story here


September 27th

… CU in the Arena … 

Tad Boyle: “We have an NCAA Tournament team”

From … Now that Tad Boyle‘s Colorado Buffaloes know when their season will begin, they can get down to the business of preparing to pursue the goal that was yanked from their hands last March.

That, of course, is an NCAA Tournament bid, something CU was in line to receive before the Covid-19 shutdown ended college basketball’s postseason before it ever began.

It has no doubt created a sense of unfinished business for the Buffs, who got the news last week from the Pac-12 that the conference will allow its basketball programs — men’s and women’s — to begin play Nov. 25.

Now the serious work begins.

“The veterans, the guys that were here last year, they know how it ended,” said Boyle, who is entering his 11th year in Boulder. “They know what we weren’t allowed to do at the NCAA Tournament and I think it’s going to be a fire in their belly — at least I hope it is between now and the next time we get back there, which should be this year. We have an NCAA Tournament team.”

Boyle isn’t afraid to put that expectation on his team’s shoulders this early because he truly believes this could be a special bunch, despite the loss of some key pieces from last year’s squad.

He knows his squad will have to replace the rebounding and athleticism of Tyler Bey, who opted to leave CU after his junior season and is being projected as a possible first round NBA pick. He knows he will have to replace the scoring and leadership of departed seniors Lucas Siewert and Shane Gatling.

But Boyle also knows he has a very, very key ingredient returning in senior point guard McKinley Wright. A two-time All-Pac-12 performer who has been the Buffs’ floor leader the last three seasons, Wright has been called one of the top 10 returning players in the nation and will almost certainly be on every national award watch list when the season begins.

Wright tested the NBA waters over the summer before deciding to return for his senior year. The chance to play in an NCAA Tournament — something he has yet to do — proved to be a factor in his decision to stay in Boulder.

“I’m looking forward to coming back and competing for a Pac-12 championship,” Wright said in August after announcing his decision to play one more year with the Buffs. “Last year we were first in the Pac-12 for a while, then went on that five-game losing streak. That didn’t define us. But once that season was washed away we were really looking forward to getting back to ourselves and making a run to the NCAA Tournament.”

Continue reading story here


September 20th

… CU in the Arena … 

Tad Boyle picks up fourth commitment – 6’5″ guard Javon Ruffin

From the Daily Camera … A large 2021 recruiting class for the Colorado men’s basketball team is nearly complete.

On Saturday, coach Tad Boyle’s program received a verbal commitment from 6-foot-5 guard Javon Ruffin. A native of New Orleans, Ruffin has been playing with PHH Prep in Phoenix.

Ruffin is the fourth piece of what will be at least five newcomers for the 2021-22 Buffs, replacing this year’s large senior class of McKinley Wright IV, D’Shawn Schwartz, Maddox Daniels, Alex Strating, and Jeriah Horne.

Ruffin’s commitment arrives one week after the Buffs received a commitment from in-state recruit Julian Hammond, a two-sport star at Cherry Creek. The Buffs previously received verbal commitments for the 2021 class from Wyoming 7-footer Lawson Lovering and Washington DC-area guard Quincy Allen, both of whom are ranked as four-star recruits by

According to, Ruffin also received a scholarship offer from one of CU’s Pac-12 rivals, Cal. Currently, 247Sports has the Buffs’ 2021 class ranked 27th in the nation and fourth in the Pac-12.


September 17th

… CU in the Arena … 

Jeff Goodman’s Preseason Top 50: CU in at No. 40

From … Now that we have a start date for the college basketball season (Nov. 25), here’s the Updated Preseason Top 50 – which will still have some changes in the coming weeks and months due to waivers, injuries and other issues that will arise.

There’s still plenty of uncertainty, but here’s what we do know: Veteran teams should have a major advantage this season, and that bodes well for Baylor, Villanova and Gonzaga — which are really 1A, 1B and 1C in my rankings.

The biggest surprises just might be Arizona State and Richmond, which both cracked the top 15. Big Blue Nation probably won’t be happy about my placement of the Kentucky Wildcats, but they have just one returnee from this past season, and that’s Keion Brooks and his 4.5 points per game. They can move up if they get Olivier Sarr eligible for this season, but the current roster isn’t worthy of a top-20 ranking.

And without further ado…

From the Pac-12 … 

13. Arizona State
Last Season: 20-11, 11-7 in Pac-12
Lose (6): SG Rob Edwards* (11.6 ppg), PF Romello White* (transferred to Ole Miss, 10.2 ppg, 8.8 rpg), F Mickey Mitchell* (1.8 ppg), F Khalid Thomas (transferred to Portland State, 2.6 ppg), G Elias Valtonen (Turned pro, 2.6 ppg), F Andre Allen (transferred to Southern)
Starters Back (2): PG Remy Martin (Sr., 19.1 ppg, 4.1 apg), F Kimani Lawrence (Sr., 4.9 ppg)
Other Returners (5): G Alonzo Verge Jr. (Sr., 14.6 ppg), F Taeshon Cherry (Jr., 4.6 ppg), G Jaelen House (Soph., 3.9 ppg), F Jalen Graham (Soph., 3.2 ppg), G Caleb Christopher (Soph., 0.7 ppg)
Eligible Transfers (1): G Holland Woods (Portland State, Jr., 17.7 ppg, 5.2 apg)
Sit-Out Transfers (1): SG Luther Muhammad (Ohio State, Jr., 7.0 ppg)
Add (3): SG Josh Christopher (No. 10), SF Marcus Bagley (No. 34), F Chris Osten

29. UCLA
Last Season: 19-12, 12-6 in Pac-12
Lose (3): G Prince Ali (6.8 ppg), F Shareef O’Neal (Transferred to LSU, 2.2 ppg), F Alex Olesinski (1.3 ppg)
Starters Back (5): G Chris Smith (13.1 ppg, 5.4 rpg), PF Jalen Hill (RS Jr., 9.0 ppg, 6.9 rpg), G Jaime Jaquez Jr. (Soph., 8.9 ppg), PG Tyger Campbell (RS Soph., 8.3 ppg, 5.0 apg), G David Singleton (Jr., 4.1 ppg)
Other Returners (3): PF Cody Riley (RS Jr., 8.8 ppg), G Jules Bernard (Jr., 5.5 ppg), SG Jake Kyman (Soph., 5.3 ppg)
Redshirted (1): PF Kenneth Nwuba (RS Soph.)
Eligible Transfers (1): SG Johnny Juzang (Kentucky, Soph., 2.9 ppg)
Add (1): SF Jaylen Clark

31. Oregon
Last Season: 24-7, 13-5 in Pac-12
Lose (4): PG Payton Pritchard* (20.5 ppg, 5.5 apg), PF Shakur Juiston* (7.9 ppg, 6.3 rpg), SG Anthony Mathis (8.5 ppg), F Francis Okoro (Transferred to Saint Louis, 3.3 ppg)
Starters Back (3): G Chris Duarte (Sr., 12.9 ppg, 5.6 rpg), G Will Richardson (Jr., 11.0 ppg), F Chandler Lawson (Soph., 4.5 ppg)
Other Returners (3): C N’Faly Dante (Soph., 5.8 ppg), G Addison Patterson (Soph., 4.6 ppg), F C.J. Walker (Soph., 4.0 ppg)
Redshirted (1): F Lok Wur (Fr.)
Eligible Transfers (3): F Eugene Omoruyi (Rutgers, 13.8 ppg, 7.2 rpg), SF Eric Williams (Duquesne, 14.0 ppg, 7.6 rpg), G Amauri Hardy (UNLV, Grad, 14.5 ppg)
Potential Sit-Out Transfers (1): F L.J. Figueroa (St. John’s, 14.5 ppg)
Sit-Out Transfers (1): G Aaron Estrada (Saint Peter’s, Soph., 8.1 ppg)
Add (1): PG Jalen Terry (No. 81)

38. Arizona
Last Season: 21-11, 10-8 in Pac-12
Lose (9): PF Zeke Nnaji* (NBA Draft, 16.1 ppg, 8.6 rpg), PG Nico Mannion* (NBA Draft, 14.0 ppg, 5.3 apg), SG Josh Green* (NBA Draft, 12.0 ppg), SF Dylan Smith* (8.6 ppg), PF Stone Gettings* (6.6 ppg), C Chase Jeter (6.5 ppg), G Max Hazzard (5.3 ppg), G Devonaire Doutrive (Transferred to Boise State, 6.3 ppg – 3 games), G Brandon Williams (DNP – Injury, 11.4 in 2018-19)
Starters Back: None
Other Returners (3): G Jemarl Baker Jr. (RS Jr., 5.7 ppg), PF Ira Lee (Sr., 3.3 ppg), C Christian Koloko (Soph., 2.3 ppg)
Eligible Transfers (3): PF Jordan Brown (Nevada, 3.0 ppg), PG James Akinjo (Soph., Georgetown, 13.4 ppg), G Terrell Brown (Seattle, Grad, 20.7 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 4.9 apg)
Add (7): SF Dalen Terry (No. 56), PF Azuolas Tubelis (Lithuania), Tautvilas Tubelis (Lithuania), SG Ben Mathurin, PG Kerr Kriisa (Lithuania), PF Daniel Batcho (France), SF Tibet Gorener

40. Colorado
Last Season: 21-11, 10-8 in Pac-12
Lose (5): G Tyler Bey* (NBA Draft, 13.8 ppg, 9.0 rpg), G Shane Gatling* (6.5 ppg), F Lucas Siewert (7.7 ppg), G Daylen Kountz (transferred to Northern Colorado, 3.0 ppg), F Jakub Dombek (Transferred to Hartford, 0.8 ppg – 4 games)
Starters Back (3): PG McKinley Wright IV (Sr., 14.4 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 5.0 apg), F D’Shawn Schwartz (Sr., 9.8 ppg), PF Evan Battey (Jr., 8.9 ppg, 5.9 rpg),
Other Returners (4): G Maddox Daniels (Sr., 3.2 ppg), G Eli Parquet (Jr., 2.6 ppg), C Dallas Walton (Sr., 1.6 ppg), F Alexander Strating (Sr., 0.3 ppg)
Eligible Transfers (1): F Jeriah Horne (Tulsa, Grad, 11.1 ppg, 5.2 rpg)
Add (4): G Dominique Clifford, G Luke O’Brien, F Jabari Walker, F Tristan da Silva

44. USC
Last Season: 22-9, 11-7 in Pac-12
Lose (8): C Onyeka Okongwu* (NBA Draft, 16.2 ppg), G Jonah Mathews* (13.4 ppg), PF Nick Rakocevic* (10.5 ppg, 8.3 rpg), G Daniel Utomi* (8.2 ppg), G Elijah Weaver (Transferred, 6.6 ppg), G Kyle Sturdivant (Transferred to Georgia Tech, 2.0 ppg), G Quinton Adlesh (1.9 ppg), SG Charles O’Bannon (transferred to TCU, 0.7 ppg – 3 games)
Starters Back (1): PG Ethan Anderson (Soph., 5.5 ppg)
Other Returners (2): PF Isaiah Mobley (Soph., 6.2 ppg, 5.3 rpg), F Max Agbonkpolo (Soph., 2.5 ppg)
Eligible Transfers (4): SG Noah Baumann (San Jose State, Jr., 10.8 ppg), G Tahj Eaddy (Santa Clara, Grad, 9.1 ppg), F Chevez Goodwin (Wofford, Grad, 11.9 ppg, 6.2 rpg), F Isaiah White (Utah Valley, Grad, 14.5 ppg, 8.4 rpg)
Sit-Out Transfers (2): G Drew Peterson (Rice, Jr., 11.1 ppg, 6.5 rpg), C Joshua Morgan (Long Beach State, Soph., 8.4 ppg, 6.1 rpg)
Add (2): C Evan Mobley (No. 2), C Boubacar Coulibaly

50. Stanford
Last Season: 20-12, 9-9 in Pac-12
Lose (4): G Tyrell Terry* (NBA Draft, 14.6 ppg), G Isaac White (transferred to Cal Baptist, 4.2 ppg), F Kodye Pugh (transferred to Loyola Marymount, DNP), G Rodney Herenton (0.2 ppg)
Starters Back (4): F Oscar da Silva (Sr., 15.7 ppg, 6.4 rpg), F Spencer Jones (Soph., 8.8 ppg), G Daejon Davis (Sr., 8.8 ppg, 3.7 apg), SG Bryce Wills (Jr., 7.8 ppg)
Other Returners (4): F Jaiden Delaire (Jr., 6.1 ppg), C Lukas Kisunas (Jr., 2.4 ppg), F James Keefe (Soph., 2.2 ppg), F Keenan Fitzmorris (RS Soph., 0.5 ppg)
Add (4): SF Ziaire Williams (No. 7), SG Noah Taitz (No. 93), PF Max Murrell, SF Brandon Angel


September 16th

… CU in the Arena … 

NCAA: Season can start Thanksgiving weekend (practices as early as October 14th)

From CBS Sports … The NCAA’s Division I Council voted Wednesday to begin the 2020-21 college basketball season on Nov. 25, sources told CBS Sports.

The highly anticipated decision comes five days after the women’s and men’s basketball oversight committees submitted joint recommendations to start on Nov. 21. But the Council wields the autonomy to make amendments to official proposals and in this case decided the day before Thanksgiving was most proper.

The decision also throws a wrench into nonconference scheduling, as nearly a dozen multi-team events — including the lauded Maui Invitational — were scheduled to begin Nov. 23.

With the start date being Nov. 25 that means full-blown practices can start, per NCAA rules, 42 days prior. That equates to Oct. 14 serving as the start of college basketball’s preseason.

Recruiting was also discussed on Wednesday and a long-term decision was made. The in-person dead period (meaning no visits) has been extended until Jan 1. Also of interest to coaches: the Council agreed to up the amount of countable athletically related activities (CARA) from eight to 12 hours per week. That will go into effect Monday.

There will be no scrimmages or exhibitions allowed in the preseason, either.

Continue reading story here


September 13th

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs pick up a commitment from Julian Hammond, a three-star dual-sport point guard 

From the Daily Camera … The Colorado men’s basketball program has landed yet another in-state recruit.

On Saturday night, Cherry Creek dual-sport star Julian Hammond (Rivals bio) announced his verbal commitment to join coach Tad Boyle’s club as part of the 2021 class. Hammond joins a class that already has received commitments from a pair of four-star recruits in Wyoming 7-footer Lawson Lovering and Washington DC prospect Quincy Allen.

Also a standout football player at Cherry Creek, Hammond averaged 21.9 points, 7.0 rebounds, and 3.6 assists in 21 games for the Bruins last season, according to the team’s statistics on He shot .504 overall from the field with a .414 mark (46-for-111) on 3-pointers.

The 6-foot-2, 180-pound Hammond has been recruited by the Buffs since his freshman season and fills the third of at least five open scholarships for CU in 2021, taking a spot from 2020-21 seniors McKinley Wright IV, D’Shawn Schwartz, Maddox Daniels, Alex Strating, and Jeriah Horne.

Through the commitments of Lovering and Allen, and albeit with plenty of time remaining in the 2021 recruiting cycle, CU’s 2021 class currently is ranked 25th in the nation by while ranking third in the Pac-12 Conference behind USC and UCLA.

Hammond’s commitment also continues a habit of the CU program under Boyle of landing the top recruits out of Colorado. That list includes former CU players Josh Scott, Wesley Gordon, Xavier Talton, Derrick White, and Dominique Collier in addition to current Buffs like Schwartz, Dallas Walton, Dominique Clifford, and Luke O’Brien. CU also landed former Denver East star Daylen Kountz, who transferred to Northern Colorado during this past offseason.


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