2007 Colorado Buffaloes Basketball Preview
Coach Ricardo Patton finished his 11th and final season coaching the Colorado Buffaloes (7- 20 overall, 3- 13 Big 12) to a last place finish. In comes new coach Jeff Bzdelik (75- 46 overall in four years), who won 50 games in two seasons as coach of the Air Force. Bzdelik, who has a lot of rebuilding to do, is a tough disciplinarian and an offensive ball control man. He’s also got a penchant for improving teams and the college basketball betting lines.
The team’s plus/minus between team scoring and scoring defense was minus-11. The Buffaloes put in 69.1 PPG (9th in the Big 12), while allowing 80.1 PPG (12th in the Big 12). Expect that deficit to shrink under Bzdelik. The club was in the lower rung in every major statistical category—plus-0.4 RPG (9th), 17.5 TPG (12th) and 13.3 APG (10th). Colorado was .651 from the free throw line, which was last in the Big 12.
When you bet on college games, consider that the frontcourt is thin. Sophomore forward Jeremy Williams (7.7 PPG, 4.6 APG, 48.8 FG%) is gone for the fall due to academic problems. The good news is senior forward Marcus King-Stockton (3.6 PPG, 4.2 APG, 39.1 FG%) is on board, having blocked 32 shots last year. Jermyl Jackson-Wilson (8.0 PPG, 6.2 APG, 53.3 FG%) is a sound shooter.
Senior guard Richard Roby (17.3 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 38.3 FG%) has the potential to be one of the best in the Big 12. He had an off year from the court last season but possesses the potential to be lights out from the backcourt. Sophomore Xavier Silas (12.0 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 40.1 FG%) returns with a good year of experience behind him. Guard Marcus Hall, who sat out of the picks on college basketball games last season due to academics, was the club’s leading assist man the year before. He’s back.
Bzdelik should be the right man for the job. Under their new coach, look for the Buffaloes to get the lead out, pushing the ball up the court faster, making crisper passes and shooting more. Colorado has some quality returning starters and some others who saw a decent amount of playing time in 2006- 2007. If they can finish 11th or 10th in the Big 12, the team will have made a major improvement.