Colorado Basketball – January, 2024

January 29th

… CU in the Arena … 

CU women drop to No. 6 in latest AP poll

From ESPN … South Carolina remained the clear No. 1 team in the country and No. 2 Kansas State matched its best ranking ever after a chaotic week that saw nearly half of the AP Top 25 lose at least one game.

The Gamecocks received all 35 first-place votes Monday in the latest Associated Press women’s basketball poll after their 76-70 road victory over then-No. 9 LSU.

While Dawn Staley’s team stayed unbeaten, many other top schools stumbled. LSU was one of five top 10 teams to lose a game last week. Overall, a dozen ranked teams had at least one defeat.

Kansas State now has its highest ranking since Nov. 25, 2002. The Wildcats have won 15 straight games, the last few without star center Ayoka Lee. She is sidelined for a few more weeks with an ankle injury. Kansas State has a tough stretch ahead with games at Oklahoma and Texas.

Iowa moved back up to third as Caitlin Clark moved closer to the all-time scoring record in women’s college basketball. She is in fourth place with 3,389 points and could pass Jackie Stiles (3,393) and Kelsey Mitchell (3,402) in the Hawkeyes’ next game on Wednesday at Northwestern. She is 138 points behind Kelsey Plum’s record mark of 3,527.

Stanford and NC State followed Iowa in the poll. Colorado, which split a pair of games in Oregon, fell three spots to sixth. UCLA dropped five places to seventh after an overtime loss to Utah and a defeat at home to Washington State.

Ohio State vaulted up four spots to eighth while LSU stayed put at nine. Indiana was 10th.

1. South Carolina (35)19-0
2. Kansas State20-1
3. Iowa19-2
4.Stanford19-2 … up two spots
5. NC State18-2
6. Colorado17-3 … down three spots
7. UCLA16-3 … down five spots 
8. Ohio St.17-3
9. LSU18-3
10. Indiana17-2
11. UConn17-4
12. Texas19-3
13. Baylor16-3
14. Notre Dame15-4
15. Southern Cal14-4 … down four spots 
16. Louisville18-3
17. Virginia Tech16-4
18. Oregon St.17-3 … up seven spots 
19. Gonzaga20-2
20. Utah15-6 … down four spots 
21. Syracuse17-3
22. Creighton16-3
23. West Virginia17-2
24. North Carolina15-6
25. Princeton15-3

Others receiving votes: UNLV 21, Washington State 15, Fairfield 13, Marquette 7, Oklahoma 6, Florida State 6, Ole Miss 2, Mississippi State 1, Washington 1, Penn State 1


January 28th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

No. 3 CU races out to 31-11 halftime lead over Oregon; coasts to 61-48 victory – “I thought we defended really well as a team”

From CUBuffs.comNo. 3 Colorado bounced back with a 61-48 win over Oregon to close the first leg of the four-game road trip on Sunday.

Colorado improves to 17-3 and 7-2 in the Pac-12, while Oregon drops to 11-11 and 2-7 in the conference.  

After falling to Oregon State Friday night, Colorado came out and built 21 21-point first-half lead on its way to victory. 

It was a team effort that got the Buffaloes back on track, in which all nine active players made at least one field goal throughout the game. Aaronette Vonleh, returning to her home state, registered her second double-double of the season, finishing the day with 16 points and 10 rebounds.

“She [Aaronette Vonleh] is just so good and it still has so much room to grow,” head coach JR Payne said after the win. “She’s just has such an incredible career ahead of her. It’s really great for her to be able to play in front of her family, her mom, her grandmother and a lot of people were here which is always great. I know she enjoyed being close to them here.”

CU outrebounded the Ducks, 52-41, and the shooting woes for Oregon (18-for-57) contributed to getting back in the win column. CU also took advantage of UO turnovers, outscoring the Ducks 22-5 in the category.

“I thought our defense was phenomenal in the first half, not as not as great in the second half,” Payne stated. “I think when we really are focused defensively, guarding as a team, we talked a lot about Grace Vanslooten, no one’s going to stop her by themselves but collectively we can make them work for her buckets. I thought we defended really well as a team.”

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January 27th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs’ rally falls short as CU lose at Washington State, 78-69

From … Colorado narrowed a 13-point deficit to three in the final minutes Saturday but the Buffaloes couldn’t completely close the gap and CU dropped a 78-69 decision to Washington State at Beasley Coliseum.

Tad Boyle‘s Buffs saw their four-game win streak come to an end and fell to 15-6 overall, 6-4 in Pac-12 play. WSU improved to 15-6, 6-4.

KJ Simpson led Colorado with 25 points and eight rebounds, Tristan da Silva scored 16 and Eddie Lampkin Jr. chipped in 10. CU freshman Cody Williams had a rare off day, finishing with just six points, all from the free throw line.

Jaylen Wells and Myles Rice each scored 17 for the Cougars.

The Buffs trailed by eight less than eight minutes in. They briefly managed to tie the game at 22-22 with five minutes left in the first half but the Cougars pushed their lead back to six at intermission, 36-30.

Colorado then gave up an 11-2 run midway through the second half that allowed WSU to build its big lead of the game, 59-46. CU did slowly chip away at the lead, using a 7-0 run to close the gap to three several times in the final minutes, but that was as close as the Buffs could come.

Colorado shot just 22-for-57 (38.6 percent) while WSU was 28-for-62 (45 percent). The big difference came in turnovers and second-chance points. WSU outscored the Buffs 13-5 in points off miscues and the Cougars also had a commanding 16-4 edge in second-chance points.

“It was a physical game and we knew that coming in,” Boyle said. “I love our fight. I love our competitiveness. This team’s got a lot of grit to it but (WSU’s) physicality bothered some of our guys and we weren’t good enough to overcome it tonight.”

HOW IT HAPPENED: Colorado trailed by six at the break, 36-30, and the Cougars extended their lead to 13 midway through the second half. The Buffs committed three turnovers in a two-minute span that fueled an 11-2 run and the Buffs trailed 59-46 with just under nine minutes to play.

“We lost this game in two areas,” Boyle said. “If you take the points off turnovers and the second-chance points and you cut them in half, it’s a ballgame.”

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Buffs looking for first-ever road sweep of Washington schools 


Tip: 3:02 p.m. MT
TV: Pac-12 Network (Greg Heister, Eldridge Recasner)
Watch Online: Pac-12 Now App,
Radio: KOA 850 AM & 94.1 FM (Mark Johnson, Scott Wilke)
Satellite: Sirius XM 380 & SXM App (970)
Listen Online:
Live Statistics:

THE BUFFALOES: Colorado is 15-5 overall and in second place in the Pac-12 Conference, just one-half game out of first. The top five teams in the Pac-12 are separated by one game and it’s only a two-game spread for the top seven.

Colorado has won four-straight after picking up its first true road win of the season, a 98-81 decision at Washington. The win snapped an overall five-game road slide dating back to last year and earned their first win in Seattle since 2015 and secured the first regular season sweep against the Huskies in the Pac-12 era. Colorado’s 15-5 overall mark is its best since the 2021 NCAA Tournament team had a similar record after 20 games.

Overall, Colorado is one of the top all-around shooting teams in the country, ranking in the top 11 nationally in all three percentage categories: overall field goal, 3-point and free throws. The Buffaloes are sixth in the nation in field goal percentage (.505), eighth from the line (.785) and 11th from 3-point range (.395).

Colorado will be looking for its first-ever road sweep of the Washington schools, and if achieved, would be the Buffaloes fourth back-to-back road sweep in the Pac-12 era:

Colorado Road Sweeps:
2012-13 – Oregon-Oregon State
2018-19 – UCLA-USC
2021-22 – *Oregon State-California-Stanford

*-Colorado won both games at Oregon/Oregon State in 2021-22, but were played on different trips during the covid era of jumbled schedules. The win at Oregon State in ’22 came on the same trip as the Bay Area (Feb. 15-19, 2022), which gave the Buffaloes the rare conference three-sweep.

ABOUT THE COUGARS: Washington State is 14-6 overall and 5-4 in the Pac-12 after a 79-57 home win over Utah on Jan. 24. The Cougars have won four of their last five, with the lone setback an 81-75 overtime setback at California on Jan. 20. WSU is 10-1 at home  this season. The Cougars are averaging 75.7 points while shooting 47.6 percent from the field. Washington State has the second-best scoring defense in the Pac-12, allowing 66.8 points per game. The Cougars lead the league in overall shooting defense (.402) as well as defending the 3-point line (.320).

Fifth-year senior Isaac Jones leads Washington State at 15.8 points and 7.7 rebounds per game while shooting 58.5 percent from the field. Jones had a perfect shooting night in the game in Boulder, hitting 7 of 7 from the field and 2 of 2 from the line, finishing with 16 points and eight rebounds. Freshman guard Myles Rice is second on the team in scoring at 15.5 points an outing. Senior forward Andrej Jakimovski averages 10.4 points and 5.6 rebounds along with a team-best 38 3-point field goals.

SERIES RECORDS: This will be the 27th meeting between Colorado and Washington State with the Buffaloes holding a 19-7 series edge. Colorado has won 10 of the last 14 in the series, including a 74-67 decision during the opening week of the league season on Dec. 31.  Washington State holds a 5-4 edge at Beasley Coliseum.

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January 26th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

No. 3 Buffs fall on the road to No. 25 Oregon State, 68-62 – JR Payne: “We’ll be fine”

Related … No. 3 CU Buffs sputter in road loss to No. 25 Oregon State … from the Daily Camera

From … No. 3 Colorado dropped its first road contest of the season Friday night at Gil Coliseum. The Buffaloes, making their last conference trip to Oregon State, couldn’t overcome a rough offensive night, dropping the weekend opener, 68-62, to the No. 25 Beavers.

Colorado (16-3, 6-2 Pac-12) finished the night with a season-low 19 field goals, marking the first time the team had 20 or fewer field goals since going 19-for-66 against Stanford last February.

“It played out similarly to what I might have envisioned, just two really good teams in a very difficult environment,” head coach JR Payne said after the game. “The foul trouble was definitely a challenge, but I thought thought we competed. We never quit. We battled and did a lot of things with different players that haven’t played in a couple of weeks and sometimes that feels a little bit discombobulated.”

Three different Buffaloes logged double-digit points with Jaylyn Sherrod recording a game-high 19. Frida Formann accounted for 13 and Aaronette Vonleh was close behind with 12 points of her own.

“We’ll be fine,” Payne stated. “This is a group that loves to learn. This is an opportunity and of course, we wanted to win the game, but we’re going to be able to watch the film and be a better basketball team by tomorrow afternoon because of the experience we had tonight. That doesn’t mean all of a sudden we make all of our shots, but if our execution can be a little bit better when it’s crunch time or if we can communicate a little more effectively on ball screen coverage or all of those areas. Maybe it would have been a different outcome.”

Oregon State (16-3, 5-3 Pac-12) was led by Donovyn Hunter and Talia Von Oelhoffen, who had 16 points each.

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Bracketology: CU back in the field (No. 10 seed at CBS and ESPN); CU women No. 1/No. 2 seed

From CBS Sports … Life on the road seems more difficult than usual. There were a few head-scratching losses for teams at the top of the Bracketology projected NCAA Tournament bracket this week.

Northwestern is an especially inhospitable host when top teams come calling. The Wildcats have already beaten Purdue and Dayton this season in Evanston, Illinois, and they added Illinois to the list of victims on Wednesday. That was a banger of a game, with Northwestern prevailing 96-91 in overtime over the Illini, who are No. 3 in the updated bracket with the Wildcats a No. 9 seed.

However, the most baffling loss was Oregon State’s buzzer-beating 83-80 win over Arizona on Thursday. Road losses to non-contenders have become a particularly disturbing trend for the Wildcats. They have lost three straight to drop to 2-3 in road games and fell from a No. 2 seed to a No. 3 seed in Friday’s bracket . Two of the losses are particularly egregious. Besides Thursday’s defeat, Stanford dropped 100 on them in a 100-80 loss last month.

Arizona has managed to pick up a couple of road wins, so it hasn’t been all bad. Somehow, one of those came at Duke. Of course, Pitt just won there too, so maybe it’s not as hard to win at Cameron Indoor Stadium this season. Those are the only home games the Blue Devils have played against teams in the top two quadrants. It’s been a weird season.

From the Pac-12 … 

  • Arizona … No. 3 seed
  • Utah … No. 8 seed
  • Colorado … No. 10 seed (v. No. 7 FAU)
  • Oregon … No. 11 seed

ESPN Bracketology … 

From the Pac-12 … 

  • Arizona … No. 2 seed
  • Utah … No. 7 seed
  • Colorado … No. 10 seed (v. Michigan State) … last four byes
  • Oregon … No. 11 seed

From CBS Sports … Time always has a way of sneaking up on you. While it may feel like the college basketball season just started, we’re past the halfway point and are fewer than eight weeks away from having a Women’s NCAA Tournament bracket.

But who will be a part of that 68-team field?

Luckily, we’ll be here with you every week from now until Selection Sunday with the CBS Sports research department’s updated Women’s Bracketology projections.

There’s no better time to start than now as we head into a terrific week of hoops headlined by Thursday’s clash between the nation’s undisputed top team in South Carolina and reigning national champion LSU.

Before we get underway, let’s remember the ground rules. These rankings reflect what our team believes the selection committee would do if the field was chosen today rather than who we think are necessarily the best teams in the country.

No. 2 seed … Colorado (16-2, 6-1 Pac-12): NET 17, SOS 14

The Buffaloes wasted no time putting themselves on the map this season with a comfortable win over LSU in their season opener. Since then, they’ve done nothing but cement their status as a No. 1 seed contender. Jaylyn Sherrod’s intensity and leadership are as unmistakable as they are captivating, but home fans won’t be able to see it for a while. Colorado begins a rare four-game road trip at Oregon State on Friday.


From the Pac-12 … 

  • No. 1 seed … Colorado
  • No. 1 seed … UCLA
  • No. 1 seed … Stanford
  • No. 3 seed … Utah
  • No. 3 seed … USC
  • No. 6 seed … Oregon State
  • No. 7 seed … Washington State

No. 3 CU women face tough road test v. No. 25 Oregon State (8:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks)

From the Daily Camera … Over the course of the last three seasons, the Colorado women’s basketball team has proven it can win games at home and on the road. The Buffaloes have proven they can beat great teams, they can win high-scoring affairs or fight through defensive battles.

If there’s something the Buffs haven’t proven, however, it’s the consistency of beating the great teams on the road.

The third-ranked Buffs will have a chance to do that on Friday when they visit No. 25 Oregon State.

“The great thing about this conference is that every time you go on the road you have that opportunity to beat an elite team because everyone is really good,”  CU head coach JR Payne said. “It’s the next step for us to prove that we can play great at home, we can play great on the road, we can just play great basketball. Wherever we are, whenever it is, we’ll play together and play well.”

For the most part, CU has done that. Since the start of the 2021-22 season, the Buffs are 21-9 in true road games, including 4-0 this season. Counting neutral court games, the Buffs are an impressive 29-14 away from Boulder in that stretch.

It has been 20 years, however, since CU defeated a ranked opponent on the road in conference play. The program has lost 57 in a row since beating No. 24 Baylor on Jan. 7, 2004.

To this Buffs team, of course, that streak doesn’t matter. They’re simply concerned with getting another win, but it’s an important game and not only because it’s their first chance to get a road victory against an NCAA Tournament-caliber team.

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January 25th

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs pick up first true road win with a 98-81 romp over Washington: “I thought our guys really came together tonight”

Related … “Road drought over as CU Buffs men’s basketball rolls past Washington” … from the Daily Camera

From … Colorado’s J’Vonne Hadley led five Buffaloes in double figures with 24 points Wednesday and Eddie Lampkin Jr. tallied his sixth double-double of the season as CU collected a 98-81 win over Washington at Alaska Airlines Arena.

Tad Boyle‘s Buffs won their fourth in a row and collected their first true road win of the season to improve to 15-5 overall and 6-3 in Pac-12 play. Washington fell to 11-9, 3-6.

Hadley shot 8-for-10 from the floor and 7-for-8 from the free throw line to give him his best point total as a Buff. Lampkin scored 14 points and grabbed 10 rebounds and KJ Simpson had a terrific all-around night, finishing with 16 points, eight rebounds and eight assists. Cody Williams added 19 points on 7-for-10 shooting and Tristan da Silva chipped in 10 points.

Keion Brooks led Washington with 19.

The Buffs took control in the first half to lead by nine at intermission, then extended their lead to as much as 21 after the break and Washington never really threatened down the stretch.

Both teams shot well from the field, with the Buffs hitting 55 percent of their attempts (33-for-60) while Washington shot 54 percent (33-for-61). But the big difference came at the free throw line, where CU hit 26 of its 28 attempts while the Huskies were just 10-for-18 from the stripe.

Colorado also held a dominant 38-22 edge on the boards, including 11 offensive rebounds that the Buffs converted into 15 second-chance points.

“I thought our guys really came together tonight,” Boyle said. “I told them for the last two days that now is the time to go get a road win — and they went out and did it. They played with great toughness, overcame some adversity early and were really dialed in.”

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January 24th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs (14-5, 5-3) seek elusive road victory at Washington (11-8, 3-5), 9:00 MT, ESPNU


Tip: 9:05 p.m. MT
TV: ESPNU (Dave Feldman, Corey Williams)
Watch Online: WatchESPN
Radio: KOA 850 AM & 94.1 FM (Mark Johnson, Scott Wilke)
Satellite: Sirius XM 383 & SXM App (973)
Listen Online:
Live Statistics:

THE BUFFALOES: Colorado is 14-5 overall and 5-3 in the Pac-12 Conference, just one-half game out of first place in a crowded league race that reaches the mid-point for most teams this week. The top six teams in the Pac-12 are separated by that one-half game, either at 5-2 or 5-3.

Colorado has won three-straight after a home sweep of Oregon and Oregon State last week. The Buffaloes knocked off the Ducks, who had been previously unbeaten in league play, 86-70 on Jan. 18. Colorado followed that up with its largest margin of victory on the season with a 90-57 decision over Oregon State on Jan. 20.

The Buffaloes improved to a perfect 12-0 at the CU Events Center, their best start to a season at home since the 1968-69 Big Eight Championship team won all 12 of its games in that title season. That team played its games in Balch Fieldhouse, so the current start is the best ever at the CU Events Center. In terms of overall home win streaks, it’s the longest since another 12-game run that spanned two seasons, from Feb. 2 to Dec. 4, 2019. Colorado’s win over USC on Jan. 13 was the 500th at the facility in program history.

The challenge ahead for the Buffaloes is to build on those successes out on the road; embarking on their second three-game road trip during this conference season. Colorado will be looking to end a five-games skid in true road games dating back to last year. Three of those five losses have come against ranked teams. Three of Colorado’s four true road losses this year have been decided by five points or less.

Overall, Colorado is one of the top all-around shooting teams in the country, ranking in the top 13 nationally in all three percentage categories: overall field goal, 3-point and free throws. The Buffaloes are ninth in the nation in field goal percentage (.503), 12th from the line (.775) and 13th from 3-point range (.392).

Colorado is the only program in the nation’s top 13 of all three categories (through games of Jan. 22). Colorado also sports top 50 marks nationally in rebound margin (+8.1, 19th), assists (17.1 apg, 26th), scoring offense (81.1 ppg, 45th), win percentage (.737, 47th) and scoring margin (+10.8, 49th).

ABOUT THE HUSKIES: Washington is 11-8 overall and 3-5 in the Pac-12 after a road-split in the Bay Area last week, thanks to a last-second 3-pointer by Moses Wood that gave the Huskies a 77-75 win at California. Washington returns from a three-game road trip of its own to Alaska Airlines Arena where the Huskies are 8-2 this year. Washington averages 80.3 points per game, ranking third in the Pac-12 right behind Colorado. Defensively, the Huskies give up 75.8 points per game. In eight conference games, Washington has allowed 77.6 points while opponents are shooting 47 percent from the field and 40 percent from 3-point range.

Graduate senior Keion Brooks Jr. is the second-leading scorer in the Pac-12 at 20.2 points per game. He also tops the Huskies in rebounding (7.3 rpg) and free throws made and attempted (90-118, .763). Graduate senior guard Sahvir Wheeler is second in the Pac-12 in assists at 5.9 per game. Wheeler is second on the team in scoring (16.1 ppg) and steals (19).  Forward Moses Wood averages 11.5 points and 4.7 rebounds per game while leading the Huskies in 3-pointers made with 42.

THE SERIES: This will be the 38th meeting between Colorado and Washington with the Huskies holding a 21-16 advantage. The Buffaloes have won the last two, including a 73-69 decision at the CU Events Center in the league opener on Dec. 29. Washington has won 14 of 16 all-time meetings in Seattle, including the last seven. Colorado’s last win at Washington was a 64-47 decision on Mar. 5, 2015.

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January 22nd 

… CU in the Arena … 

Cody Williams named Pac-12 Freshman of the Week

From the Daily Camera … Finally able to string together a few games in a row, Cody Williams has been flashing the skills that made him one of the top recruits in the nation.

On Monday, he received his first significant collegiate honor.

The dynamic wing from the Colorado men’s basketball team was named the Pac-12 Freshman of the Week after turning in a pair of solid all-around games in the Buffaloes’ home wins against Oregon and Oregon State.

It is the fifth Pac-12 Freshman of the Week award for the Buffs, and Williams is the fourth CU player to pick up the honor, joining Jabari Walker, Julian Hammond III and KJ Simpson, who won it twice in 2021-22.

Williams began the weekend by going 10-for-13 with a season-high 23 points in a win against then-first-place Oregon. Williams went 3-for-4 on 3-poiners, hitting three 3-pointers in a game for the first time this season. Williams also recorded two rebounds, three assists and two blocked shots against the Ducks. In Williams’ 11th appearance of the season, it was his third 20-point game.

Williams turned in another versatile performance in Saturday’s win against Oregon State, going 6-for-10 from the floor with a 2-for-3 mark on 3-pointers before finishing with 16 points and a season-high-tying six rebounds. Williams also had two steals, one assist and no turnovers in nearly 32 minutes.

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CU women remain at No. 3 after 1-1 weekend v. No. 5 UCLA and No. 6 USC

From CBS Sports … There was a lot of movement this week, but the South Carolina Gamecocks are once again the unanimous No. 1 team in the AP Top 25 Poll. Meanwhile, the UCLA Bruins are back at No. 2 after Iowa fell to Ohio State.

Despite a 45-point performance by Caitlin Clark on Sunday, the Hawkeyes moved down three spots to No. 5 following their 100-92 overtime loss to the Buckeyes. Clark collided with a fan who was rushing the court after the game, but the Iowa star appears to be unharmed. Ohio State was lifted to victory by Cotie McMahon’s career-high 33 points and 12 rebounds in front of a sold-out crowd at Schottenstein Center. The upset helped Ohio State climb six spots to No. 12.

The Pac-12 conference is taking USC on a roller coaster ride this month. The Trojans were responsible for UCLA’s first loss of the season on Jan. 14, but since then they have taken back-to-back losses to Utah and Colorado. Lindsay Gottlieb’s team is down to No. 11, while Utah is No. 16 and Colorado remains at No. 3.

Despite having to play without star center Ayoka Lee while she recovers from an ankle injury, the Kansas State Wildcats took a win against in-state rival Kansas and moved up to No. 4 — their best ranking in 21 years.

1South Carolina17-08751
4Kansas State18-17537
7NC State16-26464
12Ohio State15-349318
15Notre Dame14-333119
19Virginia Tech14-427214
20North Carolina14-524323
23Florida State14-610415
24West Virginia16-278NR
25Oregon State15-343NR

Others receiving votes: Marquette 37, Princeton 21, Iowa St. 14, UNLV 12, Fairfield 8, Washington St 3, Miami 2, Green Bay 1, Richmond 1, Virginia 1.


January 21st – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

No. 3 Buffs rebound with a 63-59 win over No. 6 USC: “Our veterans totally led us down the stretch of the game”

From In No. 3 Colorado’s second top-6 matchup of the weekend, the Buffs hopped back into the win column after defeating No. 6 USC 63-59 here Sunday afternoon at the CU Events Center. Quay Miller and Jaylyn Sherrod led the Buffs to the nail-biting victory, combining for 36 of Colorado’s 63 points.

The Buffaloes (16-2, 6-1 Pac-12) held the Trojans (13-3, 3-3 Pac-12) to just 12 points in both the second and fourth quarters as the defense made stops in the clutch.

“Another great crowd, awesome environment,” said head coach JR Payne after the tight win. “I’m really, really proud of our team because we haven’t played a ton of really close games this year where every single possession was crucial. But our veterans totally led us down the stretch of the game.”

“They were communicating next level things like who has the jump ball on a tie up, how many fouls do they have to give, how do we want to get the ball so just lots of really high level thinking at the end of the game. And so I’m just really proud of these guys and having that mindset down the stretch I think allowed us to be able to win the game.”

Miller recorded yet another double-double, her fourth in the last five games, as she led the team with 19 points and 12 rebounds. She shot 7-12 from the field and 3-4 from 3-point range. Sherrod showed up big in the fourth quarter with eight points bringing her total to 17. With her 17 points, she surpassed 1,300 points in her career.

Tameiya Sadler and Kindyll Wetta both had solid performances off the bench this afternoon. Sadler recorded seven points in her 15 minutes of playing time while Wetta had two steals and was efficient in sharing the ball, dishing out six assists.

“I just want the world to know that Kindyll Wetta is the best defender in America,” Payne stated. “She is tough, she is fearless, she has cat-quick hands, she’s disruptive, she can guard without fouling and she’s totally annoying on defense to her opponent.”

Wetta also had an apparent positive impact on the floor with a +/- mark of +10.

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No. 3 CU women taking on No. 6 USC (1:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks)

From the Daily Camera … In the now 13-year history of the Pac-12 Conference, only twice has the regular season champion run the table in women’s basketball.

Perennial power Stanford did it in the first year of the Pac-12 (2011-12) and again a decade later (2021-22). More often than not, the champion has had two or more losses.

Given those odds, Colorado head coach JR Payne never expected her team to be perfect, although the Buffaloes lasted longer than anyone in that quest this season. Following Friday’s 76-68 loss to No. 5 UCLA, the third-ranked Buffs now look to regroup with No. 6 USC visiting on Sunday.

“I always say we all chose this,” Payne said. “We chose the Pac-12, where we knew it would be a top-10, top-15 matchup every night because ultimately, we are that competitive, so we love it.

“I said early on that no one is going to run the table in this league. Everyone is just too darn good and so now clearly, no one’s gonna run the table.”

NOTES: CU concludes a four-game homestand. The Buffs are 2-1 on the homestand and had a nine-game home winning streak snapped Friday by No. 5 UCLA. … CU is 8-1 in games following a loss over the past two seasons. … USC leads the all-time series 16-11, but the Buffs are 7-6 against the Trojans in Boulder. CU has won three of the past four matchups. … This is the first time in series history that both teams have been ranked going into the matchup. … Quay Miller is averaging 12.0 points and 9.4 rebounds in the past five games. … The Trojans knocked off rival UCLA last Sunday, but were routed by No. 20 Utah, 78-58, on Friday in Salt Lake City. Utah outscored USC 33-18 the last 15 minutes. JuJu Watkins had 26 points. … Watkins was the No. 1-ranked recruit in the country in the 2023 class and currently ranks second nationally in scoring, behind Iowa’s Caitlin Clark. She’s earned Pac-12 freshman of the week honors a record nine times (out of 10 weeks).

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January 20th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs dominate Oregon State, 90-57 – Boyle: “Just a workmanlike effort by our guys”

From … Colorado put six players in double figures Saturday and the Buffaloes took control early and never let up, rolling to a 90-57 win over Oregon State at the CU Events Center.

Tad Boyle‘s Buffs won their third in a row to improve to 14-5 overall and 5-3 in Pac-12 play while also improving to 12-0 at home — CU’s best home start since the 1968-69 Buffs had a 12-0 home record.

Oregon State lost its fifth in a row to fall to 9-9, 1-6.

Tristan da Silva led CU with 19 points. Eddie Lampkin Jr. added 17, Cody Williams scored 16, KJ Simpson tallied 13 and Luke O’Brien and Assane Diop each chipped in 10 for Colorado (a career high for freshman Diop). Lampkin led CU with eight rebounds while Simpson and da Silva each grabbed seven. Julian Hammond III had five assists and Simpson dished out four.

Tyler Bilodeau led OSU with 18 as CU held the Beavers’ leading scorer, Jordan Pope, to just 10 points — seven under his season average.

The Buffs were in control of this one from the outset. Colorado built a 20-point edge midway through the first half, pushed the margin to 45-23 at the break and extended the cushion to 33 early in the second half. Oregon State never came closer than 23 after intermission and CU led by as much as 36 in the final minutes.

The Buffaloes dominated nearly every statistical category. CU shot 52.5 percent from the floor (32-for-61) while holding the Beavers to 20-for-60 shooting, and Colorado also had a 41-31 edge on the boards.

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CU taking on last place Oregon State  (5:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks) 

Related … Julian Hammond III trying to regain pre-injury form for CU Buffs … from the Daily Camera

CU Events Center, Boulder, Colo.
Tip: 5:06 p.m. MT
TV: Pac-12 Network (Jenny Cavnar, Matt Muehlebach)
Watch Online: Pac-12 Now App,
Radio: KOA 850 AM & 94.1 FM (Mark Johnson, Scott Wilke)
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From CUBuffs.comTHE BUFFALOES: Colorado is 13-5 overall and 4-3 in the Pac-12 Conference after knocking off Oregon, previously unbeaten in league play, 86-70 on Jan. 18. The Buffaloes improved to a perfect 11-0 at the CU Events Center, their best start to a season at home since the 2013-14 squad won their first 11. It’s CU’s longest overall home winning streak since a 12-game run spanning two seasons from Feb. 2 to Dec. 4, 2019. Last week’s win over USC was the 500th at the facility in program history (501-190, .725).

In its 11 home games this season, Colorado is averaging 85.5 points and winning by a margin of nearly 19 per game. The Buffaloes are shooting 52.7 percent from the field, including 43.6 percent from 3-point range, while enjoying a plus-10.5 advantage on the boards.

Overall, Colorado is one of the top all-around shooting teams in the country, ranking in the top 15 nationally in all three percentage categories: overall field goal, 3-point and free throws. The Buffaloes are eighth in the nation in field goal percentage (.501), 14th from 3-point range (.392) and 15th at the line (.772).

Colorado is the only program in the nation’s top 15 of all three categories (through games of Jan. 18). Colorado also sports top 50 marks nationally in rebound margin (+7.9, 22nd) and assists (16.9, 26th).

ABOUT THE BEAVERS: Oregon State is 9-8 overall and in last place in the Pac-12 at 1-5. The Beavers have dropped their last four including a 74-47 setback at Utah on Jan. 18. Oregon State averages 70.4 points on 43.8 shooting. The Beavers are the second-best free throw shooting team in the Pac-12 at 74.6 percent. Defensively, Oregon State allows 70.9 points while opponents are shooting 42.5 percent from the floor.

Guard Jordan Pope leads Oregon State at 17.4 points and 3.6 assists per game. He also tops the Beavers in 3-pointers made (39) hitting 38 percent from long range. Forward Tyler Bilodeau averages 12.4 points and 5.6 rebounds. Dexter Akanno is OSU’s third double-digit scorer at 12.2 points an outing.

SERIES RECORDS: This will be the 33rd meeting between Colorado and Oregon State with the Buffaloes holding a 21-11 advantage. The teams split the season series in 2022-23, each winning at home. Colorado has won six of the last eight meetings overall and has won 12 of 15 all-time meetings in Boulder.

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January 19th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs fall late to No. 5 UCLA, 76-68, before a record CU crowd of 11,338

From … No. 3 Colorado fell to the No. 5 UCLA Bruins by a score of 76-68 in a tightly contested battle Friday night at the CU Events Center

A record crowd of 11,338 fans filled the arena for the first-ever top 5 matchup in CU women’s basketball history. It was the fifth sellout in program history and the first in almost 30 years with the last coming in March of 1995.

“How about 11,000 people showing up for these guys,” head coach JR Payne exclaimed after the game. “Proud of a lot of things we did and very disappointed and frustrated with our rebounding because I do think that determined the outcome of the game. I mean, two heavyweights. Two of the best teams in the country and the first top-five matchup. I thought we competed on every single possession. I think our offense got stagnant, which we haven’t seen really at all this year. Then the defensive rebounding just absolutely crushed us. They’re [UCLA] a great team that is very well-coached. [They have] a lot of talented players on the floor. I am so proud of our team and some cool accomplishments happening with records and climbing in the record book.”

The Buffs’ loss to UCLA marks their first Pac-12 Conference loss of the season and second overall. It snaps their nine-game win streak, dating back to November 28th.

Four different Buffaloes had double-digit points, Jaylyn Sherrod led with 17 while Frida Formann had 16 with three triples. Aaronette Vonleh and Quay Miller had 10 points apiece.

UCLA outscored Colorado 44-33 in the second half, and it was CU’s 17 fouls to UCLA’s 10 fouls that was the difference maker. Despite shooting better from the field all game compared to the Bruins, it was CU’s foul trouble that led to the defeat. The Buffaloes had the same amount of free-throw attempts (24) as the Bruins had made free-throw makes (24).

Five different Buffs had four or more fouls, including Miller, who fouled out with just over a minute left in the game.

“It definitely played a role when the ball stopped, and now you have people trying to play in a way they don’t typically play,” Payne noted. “And then there are so many free throws in the fourth quarter, which is hard to combat, but then on the flip side, we’ll watch the film and figure out where we could have been better to keep them off [the line]. That is our mindset. We don’t really blame anybody, but we are trying to figure out ways that we could have been more effective, which we will do. It’s definitely hard to play like that with a lot of your top players in foul trouble.”

UCLA (15-1, 4-1 Pac-12) was led by Charisma Osborne’s 22 points. Lauren Betts and Angela Dugalic both finished with double-doubles, helping the Bruins outrebound the Buffs, 44-27.

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First matchup between two Top Five teams in CU women’s history 

Related …  No. 3 CU Buffs ready for showdown with fifth-ranked UCLA … from the Daily Camera 

From … No. 3 Colorado continues its toughest stretch of the season, hosting a pair of top 10 teams at the CU Events Center this weekend. The Buffaloes will take on No. 5 UCLA (Friday, 6 p.m. MT) and No. 6 Southern California (Sunday, 1 p.m. MT).

Colorado (15-1, 5-0 Pac-12) jumped back up to No. 3 this week in the Associated Press rankings, matching its highest ranking this season. The No. 3 designation also marks the team’s highest ranking since finishing the 1994-95 season at No. 2 in the country.

UCLA (14-1, 3-1 Pac-12) spent most of the season at No. 2 in the rankings, until falling to then No. 9 USC last Sunday. The Bruins are 4-1 this season against AP top-25 opponents. Colorado native Lauren Betts, leads the NCAA in field goal % this season, hitting 71.2% from the field.

USC (13-1, 31- Pac-12) jumped up three spots to No. 6 after defeating cross-town rival UCLA last week. The Trojans are 2-1 against AP top 25 opponents this season. Freshman standout Juju Watkins has won nine of the Pac-12’s 10 Freshman of the Week awards this season.

— Top 5 Showdown – Friday’s matchup pits No. 3 vs No. 5. It is the first top 5 matchup in the NCAA this season, but it will also be the first top 5 matchup in CU women’s basketball history.

— Colorado has had two of its top 14 attended games of all time this season. CU had 7,838 fans see the Buffs beat the No. 12 Utes on Dec. 30. Last week’s crowd of 9,111 vs Stanford marked the 9th largest crowd in CU women’s basketball history. The largest regular-season crowd for a women’s game was 10,929 against Kansas back on Feb. 4, 1994.

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January 18th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs pull away from Ducks for 86-70 win: “Cody really grew up tonight. That was a big-time performance in a big-time game”

Related … Late run sends CU Buffs men’s basketball past first-place Oregon … from the Daily Camera

Related … 5-star freshman Cody Williams scores 23, Colorado snaps Oregon’s 6-game win streak, 86-70 … from ESPN

From … Colorado freshman Cody Williams scored a career-high 23 points and KJ Simpson tallied 22 Thursday as the Buffaloes pulled away from Oregon down the stretch to take an 86-70 win at the CU Events Center.

Tad Boyle‘s Buffs improved to 11-0 at home while pushing their record to 13-5 overall and 4-3 in Pac-12 play. The Ducks, who fell to 1-12 all-time in Boulder, saw their six-game win streak come to an end and dropped to 13-4, 5-1.

Williams shot 10-for-13 from the floor, including 3-for-4 from long range, to lead five Buffs in double figures. Along with Simpson’s 22 points, five assists and five rebounds, Tristan da Silva tallied 13 points to go with eight rebounds, J’Vonne Hadley scored 11 and Luke O’Brien chipped in 10.

Jadrian Tracey led Oregon with 14 points while UO’s leading scorer, Jackson Shelstad, finished with just nine, nearly six under his season average.

Colorado led by nine at the half, 43-34, only to see a rash of turnovers to open the second half pave the way for a 16-6 Oregon run as the Ducks regained the lead.

But the Buffs recovered from their miscues. After a see-saw five minutes, Colorado sandwiched a pair of 7-0 runs around one Oregon basket to take control and CU outscored the Ducks 30-13 over the final 11 minutes to collect the win.

CU shot 51 percent from the floor (30-for-59), including a 16-for-29 effort in the second half. CU’s defense forced 13 UO turnovers to produce 24 points and Colorado also held Oregon to just 41 percent shooting in the second half (14-for-34).

The Buffs also held a 37-25 edge on the boards and they outscored the Ducks 40-28 in the paint.

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Buffs taking on league-leading Ducks: “We have to start stacking wins and there’s no bigger game for this basketball team than Thursday night”

Related … “Uneven start to Pac-12 play could be cured for CU Buffs in showdown against Oregon” … from the Daily Camera

Tip: 8:40 p.m. MT
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From … The table of opportunity has been set this week for Tad Boyle‘s Colorado Buffaloes.

Now the Buffs need to belly up to the table and take advantage.

Currently 12-5 overall and 3-3 in the Pac-12, CU currently sits in a three-way tie for fifth in the league standings.

But the Buffs can make a big move toward the top this weekend, beginning with Thursday night’s 8:30 matchup with league-leading Oregon (13-3, 5-0) at the CU Events Center (FS1).

They then wrap up a three-game homestand Saturday with a 5 p.m. game against Oregon State (Pac-12 Network).

The Ducks are the lone remaining team unbeaten in Pac-12 play, and they bring a six-game win streak with them to Boulder. That includes road wins at Washington and Washington State and a come-from-behind win over Cal in their last outing.

The Ducks, led by guards Jackson Shelstad (14.6 points per game) and Jermaine Couisanard (13.9 ppg), are playing their best ball of the year. While they are middle of the pack in most statistics for the season, they are much closer to the top in conference games. Oregon is fourth in scoring (78.2), third in scoring defense (72.8) and second in 3-point shooting (41.7 percent) in league games, and the Ducks lead the league in 3-point defense in conference games (32.7 percent).

But the Buffs are finally healthy. After missing standout freshman Cody Williams for seven games and senior Tristan da Silva for three, plus Julian Hammond III for a couple of games, all three were available last weekend. Colorado ended a three-game losing streak last Saturday with a come-from-behind win over USC and the Buffs should be ready for the Ducks.

“Every team this time of year has nicks and bruises,” Boyle said. “It’s a long season. It takes its toll on the body. That’s why we’re not (practicing) for two and a half hours like we were in October and November. We have to get something out of each practice and continue to get better and improve. That’s the one thing that my focus is as a coach is, to make sure we’re improving.”

One thing Boyle isn’t focusing on is Oregon’s record in Boulder. Colorado is 11-1 all-time in Boulder against the Ducks.

 “They’re a good road team,” Boyle said. “They’re well-coached … It just seems like every school has a place where they struggle. I don’t know how they look at it, but how I look at it is that record is in the past. That means nothing in terms of performance. It has everything to do with Thursday night.”

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January 15th 

… CU in the Arena … 

CU women up to No. 3 in AP poll; to face No. 5 UCLA and No. 6 USC this weekend

… No. 3 CU v. No. 5 UCLA, Friday, 6:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks … No. 3 CU v. No. 6 USC, Sunday, 1:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks … Tickets … 

From ESPN … Iowa moved up to No. 2 and Colorado to No. 3 behind top-ranked South Carolina in The Associated Press Top 25 women’s basketball poll after a chaotic week that saw half of the top 10 teams lose.

The Gamecocks (15-0), who are the last unbeaten team left, routed Missouri in their lone game last week and received all 36 first-place votes from the national media panel in Monday’s poll released hours before South Carolina hosted Kentucky.

Previously undefeated UCLA and Baylor both lost and fell in the rankings. The Bruins dropped from second to fifth and the Bears plummeted from fourth to 12th after losing to both Kansas and Iowa State. The Cyclones entered the poll at No. 24.

Caitlin Clark and Iowa moved up to second after routing then-No. 14 Indiana on Saturday night. Colorado and NC State followed the Hawkeyes. The Buffaloes are 15-1 for the first time since the 1992-93 season.

USC moved up to sixth after handing the Bruins their first loss of the season.

Associated Press poll …

1. South Carolina (36)15-0
2. Iowa17-1
3. Colorado15-1
4. NC State15-1
5. UCLA15-1
6. USC13-1
7. Kansas State17-1
8. Stanford15-2
9. UConn14-3
10. LSU16-2
11. Texas16-2
12. Baylor14-2
13. Louisville15-2
14. Virginia Tech13-3
15. Florida State14-4
16. Indiana14-2
17. Gonzaga16-2
18. Ohio State13-3
19. Notre Dame12-3
20. Utah12-5
21. Creighton13-3
22. Marquette15-2
23. North Carolina12-5
24. Iowa State12-4
25. UNLV14-

OTHERS RECEIVING VOTESOregon St. 59, West Virginia 29, Syracuse 25, Vanderbilt 8, Princeton 7, Auburn 5, Fairfield 4, Michigan St. 2.

January 14th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

Bring on the Bruins! No. 5 Buffs post rare win over No. 9 Stanford, 71-59, before 9,111 at the CEC

From the Daily Camera … One of the biggest home games in Colorado women’s basketball history lived up to the hype.

And, the fifth-ranked Buffaloes sent a raucous crowd home happy with a 71-59 victory against No. 8 Stanford at the CU Events Center on Sunday.

CU (15-1, 5-0 Pac-12) matched the best 16-game start in program history – the 1992-93 team also started 15-1 – and snapped a six-game losing streak to the Cardinal (15-2, 4-1), while taking sole possession of first place in the conference.

The first matchup of top-10 teams in nearly 30 years in Boulder drew 9,111 fans, the ninth-largest crowd ever for a CU women’s home game and the fourth-largest for a regular season game.

CU had five players score in double figures, including Quay Miller posting her third straight double-double (13 points, 10 rebounds). Jaylyn Sherrod had 13 points, four assists and four steals.

Kindyll Wetta had a huge game, with 12 points, six rebounds, five assists and four steals, while Maddie Nolan scored 12 points and Frida Formann had 10.

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January 13th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs overcome 16-point deficit to topple USC, 68-58: “They played with grit and toughness and we got the win”

From … Colorado overcame a 16-point first half deficit and the Buffaloes rallied in the second half Saturday to take a 68-58 win over Southern California in front of a crowd of 10,005 at the CU Events Center.

Tad Boyle‘s Buffs ended a three-game losing streak to improve to 12-5 overall and 3-3 in Pac-12 play while also improving to 10-0 at home. The Trojans, playing without their two top scorers, dropped to 8-9, 2-4.

J’Vonne Hadley led the Buffs with 15 points, nine rebounds and three assists. Cody Williams scored 13 and Tristan da Silva and Eddie Lampkin Jr. each scored 12, with Lampkin adding seven rebounds.

Oziyah Sellers led USC with 18.

Colorado trailed by as much as 16 in the first half and the Trojans led 37-24 at the break. But the Buffs burst from the gate after intermission with a 12-2 run and finally took the lead midway through the half. CU then built a five-point lead and maintained that edge until the final minutes, when the Buffs managed to push their cushion to double digits.

Colorado shot just 31 percent in the first half (9-for-29) while the Trojans hit 15 of their 32 shots.

But the Buffs kicked in their defense in the second half and the offense prospered as a result. CU held the Trojans to just 24 percent shooting in the second period (7-for-29) while forcing 10 turnovers and the Buffs converted those miscues into 12 points. Colorado also shot 56 percent after the break (18-for-32).

The Buffs did lose the rebound battle, 40-36, but the big difference came in the transition game. Colorado outscored USC 21-3 in fast break points, with the Buffs tallying 17 of those in the second half.

“The credit goes to our kids,” Boyle said. “They were frustrated, down at halftime. We weren’t ourselves offensively or defensively. But they dug in in the second half. We really guarded them. They played with grit and toughness and we got the win.”

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Buffs return home to try and stop the bleeding against USC (8:00 p.m., MT, ESPN2)


Tip: 8:05 p.m. MT
TV: ESPN2 (Dave Pasch, Bill Walton)
Watch Online: WatchESPN
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THE BUFFALOES: Colorado is 11-5 overall and 2-3 in the Pac-12 Conference after dropping three-straight on tough seven-day road trip. The Buffaloes were swept by the Arizona schools last week and fell 82-78 at California on Jan. 10, dropping three in a row for the first time since late in the 2022-23 season. Colorado has lost its last five true road games, three of those coming against ranked opponents.

Colorado returns to the friendly confines of the CU Events Center where the Buffaloes are a perfect 9-0 this season. A win over USC would mark Colorado’s 500th in the facility which opened for the 1979-80 season (499-190, .724).
In its nine home games this season, Colorado is averaging 87.4 points and winning by a margin of nearly 20 per game (+19.8). The Buffaloes are shooting 53.8 percent from the field, including 45.3 percent from 3-point range, while enjoying a plus-12 advantage on the boards.

Overall, Colorado is one of the top all-around shooting teams in the country, ranking in the top 21 nationally in all three percentage categories: overall field goal, 3-point and free throws. The Buffaloes are 10th in the nation in 3-point shooting (.396), 11th in overall field goal percentage (.505) and 21st from the line (.769).

Colorado is one of only three programs in the nation’s top 21 of all three categories (through games of Jan. 11) along with Alabama and Miami (Fla.), the latter which the Buffaloes defeated in Brooklyn on Dec. 10. Colorado also sports top 50 marks nationally in rebound margin (+8.4, 21st), assists (17.2, 26th) and scoring (81.0, 49th).

ABOUT THE TROJANS: USC is 8-8 overall and 2-3 in the Pac-12 coming off a 72-64 home loss to Washington State on Jan. 10. The Trojans are 1-3 in true road games this season, with the lone win coming at Alabama State on Dec. 19. USC averages 77.9 points while shooting 45.6 percent from the field. Defensively, the Trojans
have allowed 74.8 points while opponents shoot 43.7 percent. USC ranks third in the Pac-12 in blocks at 4.6 per game.

Fifth-year senior Boogie Ellis leads USC at 18.7 points per game. One of the nation’s top 3-point shooters, Ellis has 51 on the season hitting 45.5 percent from long range. His 3.4 made per game ranks ninth in NCAA Division I. Freshman guard Isaiah Collier averages 15.4 points and leads the team in assists with 61. Kobe Johnson averages 11.6 points with a team-best 30 steals. Joshua Morgan averages 6.3 points on 69.2 percent shooting and is 15th in the country in blocks at 2.3 per game.

SERIES RECORDS: This will be the 27th meeting between Colorado and USC with the Buffaloes holding a 16-10 series lead. USC has won the last three, including a season-sweep in 2022-23. Colorado has won eight of 12 all-time meetings against the Trojans in Boulder.


January 12th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

No. 5 Buffs (14-1, 4-0) pull away from Cal for a 76-61 win 

From the Daily Camera … Colorado expected California would put up a good fight on Friday.

The Golden Bears certainly did, but the fifth-ranked Buffaloes pulled away in the fourth quarter and rolled to a 76-61 victory at the CU Events Center.

Aaronette Vonleh had 19 points, Frida Formann had 14 and Quay Miller posted her second consecutive double-double (12 points, 12 rebounds) as the Buffs (14-1, 4-0 Pac-12) won their eighth consecutive game.

CU is 4-0 in conference play for the first time since the 1994-95 team that went 14-0 in the Big Eight.

Cal (12-4, 2-2) stayed in the game for most of the first three quarters, but CU wore the Bears down late.

A 10-0 run by the Buffs late in the third and early in the fourth gave them the cushion they needed to coast to the finish line.

Cal pulled within 61-52 early in the fourth, but Vonleh hit her first 3 of the season and Formann hit two 3s in a row to highlight an 11-0 run that put the game away.

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January 10th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs blow 20-point lead, fall to 5-10 Cal, 82-78 – Boyle: “We can guard people for 20 minutes but we can’t do it for 40”

From … Colorado’s defense collapsed Wednesday as the Buffaloes let a 19-point lead in the second half slip away, allowing Cal to take an 82-78 win at Haas Pavilion.

Tad Boyle‘s Buffs dropped their third straight game to fall to 11-5 overall and 2-3 in Pac-12 play while Cal improved to 6-10, 2-3.

The Buffs led by 20 late in the first half and held a 50-31 lead early in the second period. But the Bears got hot from 3-point range, draining nine treys in the second half, and the Buffs never came up with an answer on the defensive end.

Colorado still had a chance to get the win in the final seconds. After Cal hit one of two free throws to take an 80-78 lead with 12 seconds remaining, CU’s Tristan da Silva had an open 3-pointer from the wing. But his shot drew iron, the Bears rebounded and hit two more free throws to finish the scoring.

Eddie Lampkin Jr. led four Buffs in double figures with a career-high 22 points and 11 rebounds. Da Silva added 20, Cody Williams scored 16 in his return to the lineup after missing seven games with an injury and KJ Simpson chipped in 12.

Jaylon Tyson led Cal with 30 points, 23 coming in the second half.

CU shot a respectable 49 percent from the floor (29-for-59) while the Bears shot just 40 percent (26-for-65). But Cal also hit 14 of its 30 3-point attempts, including a 9-for-15 effort from long range in the second half.

The Buffs did hold a 39-35 edge on the boards and a 42-18 edge in the paint, but Colorado had no answer for the Bears’ offense down the stretch as Cal hit 13 of its last 17 field goal attempts.

The Buffs thus ended up 0-3 on their road trip, with two of the losses — to ASU and Cal — coming down to the final seconds.

“If you score 78 points on the road, it’s good enough to win if you can guard anybody,” Boyle said. “But right now, for some reason, we can guard people for 20 minutes but we can’t do it for 40. I told the guys, the margin for victory is really thin. We’re two possessions away from being 4-1 in this league but we’re not. We’re 2-3 because we couldn’t get a stop at Arizona State and we couldn’t get a stop tonight against Cal. We had some good performances individually tonight but collectively as a team, we just weren’t good enough.”

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Buffs look to end two-game skid v. 5-10 Cal (9:05 p.m., MT, ESPNU): “We have to get an identity back”

Tip: 9:05 p.m. MT
TV: ESPNU (Dave Flemming, Sean Farnham)
Watch Online: WatchESPN
Radio: KOA 850 AM & 94.1 FM (Mark Johnson, Scott Wilke)
Satellite: Sirius XM 373 & SXM App (Pac12)
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ABOUT THE GOLDEN BEARS: California is 5-10 overall and 1-3 in the Pac-12 after splitting on the road at the Southern California schools last week. The Bears got their first win at UCLA in 14 years, 66-57, on Jan. 6, snapping an overall three-game skid in the process.

California averages 75.1 points per game while shooting 43.3 percent from the field. The Golden Bears are second in the Pac-12 in 3-pointers at 8.9 made per game while ranking ninth in percentage (.338). Defensively, Cal is last in the Pac-12 in both points allowed (76.3 ppg) and shooting percentage (.452).

Guard Jaylon Tyson leads California at 20.1 points and 3.2 assists per game while grabbing 7.3 rebounds per contest and shooting 50 percent from the field. Forward Fardaws Aimaq leads the Pac-12 and ranks seventh in the nation in rebounding at 10.7 per game. He is second on the team in scoring at 15.5 points per game and his 10 double-doubles on the season lead the Pac-12 and rank third nationally. Guard Jalen Cone averages 14.3 points and has a teambest 48 3-point field goals made.

SERIES RECORDS: This will be the 41st meeting between Colorado and California with the Buffaloes holding a 22-18 lead. The teams split last season’s series, each winning on its home court. California has won 13 of 15 all-time meetings in Berkeley, including the last three.

From CUBuffs.comTad Boyle‘s Colorado Buffaloes return to the court Wednesday night aiming to halt a two-game skid when they take on Cal at Haas Pavilion (9 p.m., ESPNU).

That’s not how the Buffs (11-4 overall, 2-2 Pac-12) envisioned wrapping up a three-game swing away from home, but a Wednesday win against Cal (5-10, 1-3) will at least keep them in the upper half of the Pac-12 standings.

The Buffs started their road trip with hopes of at least a pair of wins. But after a blowout loss at Arizona and a narrow defeat at Arizona State — a game the Buffs had a chance of winning in the final minutes — they now find themselves needing a win just to regain some momentum for an upcoming three-game homestand.

“We have to get an identity back that right now we don’t have,” CU head coach Tad Boyle said. “We had two games in a row where we were 0-for-9 in our game goals. The Arizona game was understandable the way we played and how we got blown out of the gym, but Arizona State is a one-possession game, went down the wire and we didn’t play well in any facet of the game.”

Indeed, the Buffs weren’t at their best in any part of their game at ASU — and they still had a chance to take the lead with under two minutes to play.

“That should let us know how close we are to winning a game like that, but we don’t have an identity right now,” Boyle said. “We usually try to hang our hat on defense and rebounding. We didn’t do that. We didn’t guard the 3-point line. We didn’t take care of the ball, didn’t get to the free throw line. There’s a lot of things that didn’t happen in that game, and we fouled too much. There’s a lot of things we have to get better at.”

The Buffs are currently in a four-way logjam tied for fourth in the league standings. With 16 conference games still to play, there’s obviously plenty of time to move up in the standings.

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January 9th

… CU in the Arena … 

Cody Williams to suit up for Cal game? “I’m hopeful he’ll be back Wednesday”

From the Daily Camera … It fell short of the declaration Colorado fans have eagerly awaited. But coach Tad Boyle hinted the end of the line might finally be near for the worst of the Buffaloes’ personnel issues.

As the Buffs traveled directly from Arizona to Berkeley, Calif., for the final Pac-12 Conference visit at California on Wednesday, Boyle indicated the return of talented freshman Cody Williams might be on the horizon.

“I’m hopeful he’ll be back Wednesday,” Boyle told BuffZone, “but we’ll see.”

Williams has missed the past seven games due to a left wrist injury, getting sidelined just as he appeared to be getting fully comfortable at the collegiate level. Williams also missed the second game of the season against Grambling State due to an unrelated injury, but in seven starts he averaged 14.0 points while shooting .623 from the floor. That included a 6-for-10 mark on 3-pointers, and he was averaging 3.6 rebounds and 2.0 assists.

Before getting injured, Williams had posted back-to-back 21-point games, compiling that total in just the second half of a Nov. 29 loss at Colorado State before posting 21 points again against Pepperdine. Williams shot .680 (17-for-25) in those two games and was 4-for-4 on 3-pointers in the three games prior to his injury.

With or without Williams, the Buffs on paper should have an opportunity to get well offensively against a Bears squad that ranks last in the Pac-12 in defensive field goal percentage, defensive 3-point percentage and points allowed. But Cal is coming off its first win at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion in 14 years, and first-year Bears coach Mark Madsen designed a winning scouting report against the Buffs 10 months ago as his former team, Utah Valley, knocked off CU in the second round of the NIT in Boulder.

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January 8th

… CU in the Arena … 

Buffs have short turnaround before facing Cal on the road Wednesday: “It’s not going to be easy”

From the Daily Camera … The Buffs have not offered any manpower-related excuses for any performance this year, yet the reality is that in 15 games so far, CU has hit the floor with its full rotation in just seven of them. With freshman Cody Williams having missed the past seven games due to a left wrist injury, the Buffs have played the last four games while missing two key rotation pieces. Da Silva’s return coincided with guard Julian Hammond III getting forced to the bench with a back injury.

CU has shown it can win shorthanded, routing a 15th-ranked Miami team a month ago in New York and sweeping the first conference series of the season at home last week against the Washington teams. But that certainly wasn’t the case in Arizona, as the Buffs were trounced by No. 10 Arizona before dooming themselves with 10 first-half turnovers at Arizona State.

“It’s a thing you go home and think about. It’s a frustrating thing,” CU forward J’Vonne Hadley said. “When we’re full and healthy, we’re a really good team. I still think we’re a really good team. We beat Washington and Washington State without them. We just have to try to be consistent with it. There’s going to be nights when the offense isn’t going so we’ve got rely on our defense. But again, it comes down to taking care of the ball and knowing personnel. We keep saying the same thing every game, so something’s got to change.”

Regardless of who fills out the rotation, the Buffs at some point will have to find ways to win on the road. Getting swept during the two-game swing through Arizona left the Buffs at 0-3 in true road games (also Colorado State) going into Wednesday’s matchup at California (9 p.m. MT, ESPNU). The Golden Bears on Saturday posted their first win at UCLA since 2010.

“We’ll get one good day of practice on Monday on this trip, and a little bit on Tuesday,” CU head coach Tad Boyle said. “We’ve got to find a way to beat Cal on Wednesday. And it’s not going to be easy because Cal plays hard and they’re in a lot of games. We’re going to have to execute.”

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January 7th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

CU women race to 50-25 halftime lead, coast to 81-68 road win over Arizona State

From … No. 5 Colorado finished with two wins in the desert this weekend after defeating Arizona on Friday night and Arizona State 81-68 here Sunday afternoon.

The Buffaloes (13-1, 3-0 Pac-12) picked up their seventh straight win this season behind a dominant second quarter against the Sun Devils (8-7, 0-3 Pac-12), outscoring ASU 25-7 in the 10 minutes. Colorado shot 50.0% from the field and from three-point range while holding Arizona State to just 8.3% from the field in the quarter.

Aaronette Vonleh erupted early with a 14-point first quarter which led to a team-high 20 points on 10-15 shooting in the game. Next it was Maddie Nolan’s turn who had nine second quarter points after cashing in on three 3’s. Vonleh and Nolan helped Colorado reach 50 points in a half for the seventh time this season.

The huge first half from CU allowed the Buffs to accumulate a total of 76 combined bench minutes between seven players this afternoon. Charlotte WhittakerSara-Rose Smith and Kindyll Wetta combined for 17 bench points with Whittaker leading the group with seven.

Colorado seemed to be extra dialed in today after that crazy one-point win over Arizona by coming out of the gate hot and scoring 25 points in each of the first two quarters. The Sun Devils did pose a comeback threat late in the fourth as a results of CU turnovers, however the Buffs managed to pick it up and hang on for the victory.

The Buffs will travel back to Boulder to play the Cal Golden Bears on the night of Friday, January 12th.

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January 6th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena …

Tristan da Silva returns, but Buffs still fall to Arizona State, 76-73

From the Daily Camera … The rotation for the Colorado men’s basketball team still isn’t fully healthy.

The Buffaloes, however, go a little bit closer on Saturday with the very welcome return of senior forward Tristan da Silva.

Unfortunately for CU, da Silva’s presence wasn’t enough for the Buffs to salvage a split of the two-game swing through Arizona, as Arizona State took advantage of a mistake-prone CU club to hand the Buffs a 76-73 defeat in a Pac-12 Conference battle on Saturday night at Desert Financial Arena.

After a slow start offensively for both teams, they both warmed up as the first half progressed. ASU and CU both finished the first half at 53%, but CU’s 10 first-half turnovers led to a 20-7 edge for the Sun Devils in the opening frame as the hosts took a 44-38 lead into the break.

ASU converted the first bucket of the second half to push its lead to eight, but the Buffs chipped away and got within one point on a J’Vonne Hadley 3-pointer. ASU answered with seven consecutive points but CU reeled off a 13-3 run, capped by a da Silva 3-pointer, to tie the game at 66-66.

The game also was tied at 68-68 and 70-70, but ASU scored the next five points. A KJ Simpson 3-pointer with 8.3 seconds left got CU within 75-73, and the Buffs still had a chance when ASU’s Frankie Collins made just one free throw with 7 seconds left. ASU then fouled Simpson in the backcourt, but after he missed his free throw attempt the rebound was batted around long enough for the clock to expire.

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Short-handed Buffs look to rebound against Arizona State (6:00 p.m., MT, ESPNU)

From the Daily Camera … After Thursday’s defeat — the most lopsided loss for the Buffs since a 48-point loss against Kansas 26 years ago — Boyle was noncommittal about CU’s two injured standouts, Cody Williams (wrist) and Tristan da Silva (ankle), after neither player suited up against the Wildcats. Yet with both players out of uniform at UA, the short turnaround makes it questionable they will see the end of absences that have grown to six consecutive games for Williams and three for da Silva.

The Buffs also played the second half at UA without guard Julian Hammond III, who aggravated a back injury late in the first half and did not return.

“Coach said adversity is going to hit us. It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when,” CU guard KJ Simpson said. “That when was going to happen anytime, it just happened to be now. With this quick turnaround, it allows us to move past it and allows us to understand what we need to get better on and just go in and get this win.”

ASU has been rock-solid defensively, ranking second in the league in defensive 3-point percentage (.302) and fifth in overall defensive field goal percentage (.415).

“We’ve got to believe in each other, believes in ourselves, believe in the system, believe in what we do well,” Boyle said. “If we do those things well, we know we can play with anybody. When we don’t, and you get beat in every facet of the game, it doesn’t matter who you’re playing. When you’re playing Arizona, which is a top-10 team in the country, you can get exposed a little bit. And we got exposed (Thursday) in a lot of different areas and we can’t let that happen.”

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January 5th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena … 

No. 5 CU women escape with a 75-74 road win over Arizona

From ESPN … Jaylynn Sherrod had scored 18 points, including the go-ahead three-point play with 1:50 left, to give No. 5 Colorado a 75-74 win at Arizona on Friday night.

The Wildcats had two chances to win it in the final seconds, but jumpers by Kailyn Gilbert and Breya Cunningham fell short.

Sherrod was 5 of 10 from the field and 7 of 9 from the line, making 2 of 3 free throws in the last two minutes for Colorado’s last scoring. Quay Miller had 14 points and Aaronette Vonleh added 11, but the Buffaloes (12-1, 2-0 Pac-12) had 19 turnovers, leading to 23 points for Arizona (9-5, 1-1).

The Wildcats took a 72-71 lead with 2:08 left on a 3-pointer by Helena Pueyo. They had a chance to win despite being outrebounded 41-21 and giving up 17 offensive rebounds.

Gilbert finished with 19 points and Jada Williams added 16 for Arizona, which had only seven players available. The Wildcats shot 55.2% and outscored the bigger Buffaloes 48-42 in the paint.

Colorado led 38-36 at the half despite 13 turnovers. Another giveaway contributed to the Buffaloes falling behind by three early in the third quarter before a 9-2 run capped by Maddie Nolan’s 3-pointer put them up 50-45 with 4:23 left in the period.

But Arizona scored the final 10 points of the third to lead 58-52, limiting Colorado to 30% shooting in the quarter while making 69.2% of its shots. The Wildcats upped the run to 12-0 before Colorado fought back, getting back-to-back baskets inside from Vonleh for a 67-65 advantage with 4:25 left.

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January 4th – Game Day!

… CU in the Arena …

Buffs humbled by No. 10 Arizona, 97-50 – Boyle: “We just didn’t follow with our game plan”

From … The Colorado men’s basketball team has enjoyed a solid start to the 2023-24 season despite playing a majority of its games shorthanded.

Going into the toughest road game of the season on Thursday night, the Buffaloes remained hamstrung by injuries. But the ability to overcome the manpower issues disappeared in the desert.

The Buffs once again played without senior standout Tristan da Silva and talented freshman Cody Williams, both of whom once again were sidelined due to injury as CU visited No. 10 Arizona. Whether they would’ve helped as the game unfolded might be debatable, as the Wildcats quickly ran away from CU to hand the Buffs a 97-50 defeat.

It was the largest margin of defeat for CU in 26 years, dating back to a 49-point loss against Kansas on Jan. 7, 1998.

The loss snapped a six-game winning streak for the Buffs and continued their run of futility at the McKale Center, where CU fell to 0-13 all-time. It also was the Buffs’ 19th consecutive loss against ranked foes in true road games.

“I’m not going to sit here and make that excuse now. We showed that we can win. We showed we can win with people down,” CU guard KJ Simpson said. “I can’t make that same excuse just because we lost. Credit to Arizona, they were ready. We just didn’t follow with our game plan. We kind of let the crowd get to us. The turnovers, that’s my fault. We just didn’t run our offense to the highest of our capability that we’ve been doing.”

Da Silva, CU’s second-leading scorer (15.7) and third-leading rebounder (5.4), missed his third consecutive game due to an ankle injury he suffered at practice last week. Williams, who has averaged 14.0 points in seven games, missed his sixth consecutive game due to a left wrist injury. The Buffs also lost guard Julian Hammond III during the game, as he got up slowly after a hard fall late in the first half and did not return after the break. Hammond aggravated a back injury that he has been playing through in recent weeks.

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CU seeking first win over Arizona in Tucson since 1965

Related … Final Pac-12 road show begins for CU Buffs men’s basketball at No. 10 Arizona … from the Daily Camera 


Tip: 7:40 p.m. MT
TV: ESPN (Dave Pasch, Bill Walton)
Watch Online: WatchESPN
Radio: KOA 850 AM & 94.1 FM (Mark Johnson, Scott Wilke)
Satellite: Sirius XM 384 & SXM App (974)
Listen Online:

THE BUFFALOES: Colorado is 11-2 overall and 2-0 in the Pac-12 Conference after sweeping Washington and Washington State at home last week. The Buffaloes start conference play 2-0 for just the fourth time in the Pac-12 era and first since 2014-15. Colorado’s 11-2 mark overall is its best since hitting the same mark in 2019-20

The Buffaloes have won six-straight and seven of their last eight. The six-game winning streak is the program’s best since a six-game run late in the 2020-21 Tournament season. The win over Washington State gave Colorado a perfect 6-0 record in December, the first time going undefeated in the 12th month since 2005-06 (also 6-0).

Colorado is one of the top all-around shooting teams in the country, ranking in the top 12 nationally in all three percentage categories: overall field goal, 3-point and free throws. The Buffaloes are fourth in the nation in overall shooting at 51.8 percent, rank sixth in 3-point percentage (.408) and 12th from the line (.780).

Colorado is one of only two programs in the nation top 12 of all three categories (through games of Dec. 29) along with Miami (Fla.) which the Buffaloes defeated in Brooklyn on Dec. 10. The Buffaloes lead the Pac-12 Conference in all three as well.

The Buffaloes also sport top 30 marks nationally in rebound margin (12th, +11.2), assists (13th, 18.4 apg), scoring offense (25th, 84.2 ppg), scoring margin (27th, +15.4) and win percentage (19th, .846).

ABOUT THE WILDCATS: No. 10 ranked Arizona is 10-3 overall and 1-1 in the Pac-12 after splitting its road trip in the Bay Area. The Wildcats are 2-3 in their last five contests after starting 8-0 and rising to No. 1 in the national polls. Arizona leads the Pac-12 at 92.3 points per game, shooting 49.5 percent from the field. Defensively, the Wildcats have allowed opponents 73.4 points and 42.3 percent from the field.

Guard Caleb Love leads Arizona at 17.4 points per game and is tied for the team lead in 3-pointers with 27. Center Oumar Ballo tops the Wildcats in rebounding (8.2 rpg) and field goal percentage (.637) while averaging 13.2 points per contest. Pelle Larsson averages 12.1 points and 4.2 rebounds per game.

SERIES RECORDS: This will be the 41st meeting between Colorado and Arizona with the Wildcats holding a 24-16 series lead. Arizona won the only meeting last year, a 78-68 decision in Tucson on Feb. 18.  Arizona holds a 14-3 all-time lead in Tucson. The Buffaloes last win at Arizona came on Dec. 20, 1965.

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January 2nd 

… CU in the Arena … 

Jaylyn Sherrod ESPN’s Player of the Week and Pac-12 Player of the Week; CU up to No. 4 in ESPN Power Rankings

From Pac-12 … The Pac-12 today announced its women’s basketball performance awards, presented by Nextiva, for games played from December 25 – December 31 and voted on by media who cover the league

PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Jaylyn Sherrod, Gr., G, Colorado, (Birmingham, Ala.) >> 1 G, 34.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 4.0 APG, 6.0 SPG, 56.5 FG%

  • Career-best 34 points in the victory over No. 12 Utah (76-65) for the first 30-point game by a Buff since Mya Hollingshed’s 32 points on Jan. 17, 2021.
  • Season-high six steals, and posted four assists and four rebounds.
  • Shot 56.5% (12-23) from the floor.
  • Third career Pac-12 Player of the Week award for Sherrod, and Colorado’s ninth all-time.

From ESPN … The final days of 2023 delivered for women’s college basketball fans.

Three of the weekend’s matchups between top-25 teams lived up to the billing: No. 2 UCLA-No. 6 USC and No. 10 Baylor-No. 5 Texas were close until the final moments before the Bruins and Bears pulled away to win by seven and six points, respectively. Out West, No. 8 Colorado erased an eight-point deficit in the fourth quarter to beat No. 12 Utah by 11. And No. 15 UConn thrashed No. 18 Marquette by 31 after falling behind 10-0 to start.

Player of the week: Jaylyn Sherrod, Colorado

Sherrod was one of the final cuts from ESPN’s list of the top 25 players last month, but on Saturday the Colorado point guard made her case for belonging on it. The fifth-year senior tallied the first 30-point performance of her career, as she exploded for 34 points and impacted every other aspect of the game, finishing with 4 assists, 4 rebounds and just 1 turnover. Thirteen of Sherrod’s points came in the decisive fourth period, in which the Buffaloes bested the Utes 25-11, while Sherrod’s six steals and overall defensive presence gave fits to a typically high-powered Utah offense.

Colorado is at its best when Sherrod is aggressive, impactful and efficient on both ends, and Saturday was a reminder why. There has been a lot of buzz surrounding UCLA, USC, Utah and even Stanford when it comes to the Pac-12 title race, with the Buffs losing a bit of momentum when they fell last month to NC State. But Sherrod and Colorado said “don’t forget about us” with their statement win in a big conference game.

ESPN Power Rankings … 

4. Colorado Buffaloes (11-1)
Previous ranking:
This week: at Arizona (Friday), at Arizona State (Sunday)

Colorado gained another résumé-building win (this one with big Pac-12 implications) by beating Utah in the first matchup of the series in which both teams were ranked. The game also saw the highest regular-season attendance for Colorado women’s basketball since 2002. A big fourth quarter in which the Buffs finished the contest on a 23-4 run did the trick, while overall Colorado forced 20 turnovers and held Utah nearly 30 points below its season scoring average.

Aaronette Vonleh had a tough task in battling Alissa Pili down low, but her 18 points were huge in making up for quiet nights from Frida Formann and Quay Miller (combined three points). Their rematch is Feb. 16 in Salt Lake City.

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