The UCLA Bruins (13-3, 2-1) get vertical as they travel to the mountain city of Boulder to face the Colorado Buffaloes (14-3, 3-1). The Buffs recently got some bad news when they found out god-sent point guard Spencer Dinwiddie is out for the season with an ACL (knee) injury. Colorado needs to find a way to push through this, there is no other way to put it. As for UCLA, they need to not get sucked into the frenzy of Colorado losing Dinwiddie, especially in that proud and volatile arena.
TV: Pac-12 Networks
Location: Coors Event Center, Boulder, CO
Tip-Off: 5:00 p.m. PT/8:00 p.m. ET
Odds: UCLA -1.5
Ticket Information: uclabruins.com/tickets
Preview: Look, this is not the game everyone wanted to see in the sense that both teams will not be at 100%, namely Colorado. That is a testament to the kind of player Dinwiddie is. He affects the conference.
Oh well, the show must go on! The Bruins are going to ROLL!!!
Now that is the kind of thinking that will get the Bruins a guaranteed loss. If UCLA goes into the Coors Event Center with the thought that they are going to smash a Dinwiddie-less Buffalo squad, then they learned nothing this season.
Dinwiddie is not the only reason Colorado has had had one of the most successful starts to their season in their history of hoops. To start, there is Josh Scott, Askia Booker, Xavier Johnson, Wesley Gordon, Jaron Hopkins, Dustin Thomas and Xavier Talton. Yes I just shot off seven names, that is because those are seven names of guys that can produce.
Why don’t we start with Johnson, a 6’7” athletic freak of nature? He is going to have to go up against the Wears at some point. David and Travis can not be sucked into his style of play or Johnson will eat them alive. The same can be said about Scott, who is two inches taller with 13.6 ppg and a team leading 9.2 rpg.
And if Colorado having an inside game was not enough, they have some dude named Booker who is deadly from downtown. Just ask Kansas. Booker was part of that backcourt partnership with Dinwiddie, so not all leadership is lost for Colorado… and that is what the Bruins need to realize.
UCLA needs to play their game. To quote Pink Floyd, they need to “Run, run, run, run.” UCLA’s up-tempo game has to continue. Their rebounding and overall defense is improving, so they just need to keep it going. One person that could help in that is Tony Parker.
After fouling out with only 3 points and 3 rebounds against Arizona State, Parker needs to redeem himself. He has been doing well lately, so a solid game against one of the better conference teams would do him right. If not, I think it is time for #FreeBail. Wanaah Bail, that is.
Set those DVRs or get home in time. The crazy Mountain Time Zone knows no limits.
Prediction: Colorado 74 – UCLA 78