NCAA Basketball Betting Preview: Colorado Buffaloes at (3) Arizona Wildcats

Solomon Hill and the Wildcats are looking for their best start in 80 years with a win tonight to improve to 13-0.
Colorado at (3) Arizona
Time: 8 PM EST
Spread: ARI -12.5
Total: 139
M/L: ARI -900, COL +650

Betting Odds from Bookmaker

Arizona is 12-0 and could be off to their best start in 80 years. Colorado is no pushover, though. THe Buffaloes beat the Wildcats in the Pac-12 championship last year, and the teams split their regular season match ups last year, as well.

The last time the Wildcats opened with 12 straight victories was 1987-88, and that year they got to the Final Four, so Arizona’s fanbase is expecting big things this year.

The Colorado Buffaloes have won three straight including a 47 point win over Northern Arizona on Dec. 21 and another 28 point victory over Hartford, but things will be much tougher on the road against the No. 3 team in the nation.

Buffaloes coach Tad Boyle said of Arizona, that “They’ve got animals in there and it’s a different deal than what we’ve faced in the last two games. But our guys understand that and our guys love challenges.”

Among those challenges will be contending with the talented trio of Mark Lyons, Solomon Hill and Nick Johnson. They combine to average 38.8 points per game, paced by Lyons’ 13.4 points per game on 45.9 percent shooting.

Lyons, a 6’1″ senior, has been inconsistent as he has been good, though. Against both San Diego State and ETSU, he failed to score in double figures, and shot just 5-of-19 from the floor. Those poor games were offset by great games against Miami (FL), Oral Roberts and then-No. 5 Florida. Against the Hurricanes, he put up 19 points on 7-of-12 shooting. Which Lyons will show up tonight?

Colorado averages 73 points per game and are led by Askia Booker, Spencer Dinwiddle, Josh Scott and Andre Roberson. Roberson is one of the top big men in the country, averaging 12 points per game and 12 rebounds per game, while also swatting away 1.5 shots per game.

The 6’7″ junior forward had 20 rebounds in the 50-43 victory over Fresno State on Dec. 12 and has scored in double figures in eight of the last nine Buffaloes games. He’ll dominate the boards again tonight, and should help Colorado keep this one close.

Colorado Betting Trends:

Buffaloes are 11-3 ATS in their last 14 Thursday games, 7-2 ATS in their last 9 overall, and 7-3 ATS in their last 10 on the road.

Arizona Betting Trends:

Wildcats are 10-0-1 ATS in their last 11 overall, 11-1 ATS in their last 12 on Thursday, and 15-5-1 ATS in their last 21 games at home.

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