Jan 23, 2014; Tucson, AZ, USA; Colorado Buffaloes forward Dustin Thomas (13) and guard Askia Booker (0) and Arizona Wildcats forward Rondae Hollis-Jefferson (23) battle for positioning during the second half at McKale Center. Arizona won 69-57. Mandatory Credit: Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

Pac-12 Preview: Arizona Wildcats (24-2, 11-2) #4 vs. Colorado Buffaloes (20-7, 9-5)

The Colorado Buffaloes (20-7, 9-5 in Pac-12) can boost their resume with a home win over the Arizona Wildcats on Saturday. It will be a tough task as the Wildcats boost one of the best records in the nation with just two losses on the season — both of them came in conference play. The Buffaloes are coming off of a back-and-fourth game against the Arizona State Sun Devils in which they won, 61-52.

What: Pac-12 Conference Game:  vs. 
When: Saturday, February 22nd
Where: Coors Event Center
Time: 9:00 PM ET, 7:00 PM MT.

Digger Phelps who is now an ESPN Analyst — formerly the coach of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish for over 20 years, had some high-praise for the Buffaloes with the way they have played without star point guard Spencer Dinwiddie (ACL). This coming from CUBuffs.com.

“It’s up to the other guys,” said Phelps, part of the ESPN College GameDay crew that will broadcast from the CEC Saturday at 7 a.m. then again an hour before the 7:05 p.m. CU-Arizona tip. “I thought the balance (CU showed) at Southern Cal meant a lot. They’ve learned now that one extra pass really matters. Now, it’s like, ‘Ok we have to rely more on each other,’ and it’s that one extra pass to get the extra shot and get five guys in double figures.”

He speaks about the emergence of Askia Booker and his confidence level.

Askia, he’s just a go-to person, he makes some big shots,” Phelps said. “He’s got a lot of confidence, and that’s important because as good as Dinwiddie was, somebody else has to step up and he’s got the other guys believing. I think that is the important part about what they have and why they are doing it.”

The Buffaloes will face a tough-task in the Arizona Wildcats who boast the fifth least points allowed per game at just 57.7 a game. Colorado will have to take care of the ball and minimize their turnovers over it could be a rough game at the CEC. The last time these two teams met back on Jan. 23rd, the Wildcats came away with the 69-57 win where Brandon Ashley would score 15 points on 6-of-7 shooting, collecting 4 rebounds and 2 steals. Ashley will not be available for the Cats as he is dealing with a right foot injury.

Projected Starting Lineups:

Arizona Wildcats:

PG: T.J. McConnell
SG: Nick Johnson
SF: Gabe York
PF: Aaron Gordon
C: Kaleb Tarczewski

Colorado Buffaloes:

PG: Xavier Talton
SG: Askia Booker
SF: Xavier Johnson
PF: Dustin Thomas
C: Josh Scott

Tags: Colorado Buffaloes PAC-12 Preview

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