Colorado Buffaloes at Stanford Cardinal
Maples Pavilion – Stanford, California
Wednesday, March 5, 2014, 9:00 pm Eastern, TV: ESPN2
Opening Line: Stanford -8
Current Line: Stanford -8 1/2
Opening Total: 143
Current Total: 142 1/2
Opening Money Line: Stanford -375 / Colorado +305
Current Money Line: Stanford -440 / Colorado +350
The 18-10 Stanford Cardinal and 20-9 Colorado Buffaloes meet for the first time this season in a key Pac 12 game. Both teams are 9-7 in conference and tied for fourth in the conference with California. The top four teams get first round byes in next week’s Pac 12 tournament in Las Vegas. Arizona has already clinched the outright regular season title and #1 seed in the tournament at 14-2. UCLA has pretty much locked up the #2 seed at 11-5, and Arizona State is currently the #3 seed at 10-7. Basically, Colorado, Stanford and Cal are fighting for the last bye.
Stanford leads the series 9-5 against Colorado, but the Buffaloes have won 2 straight games against the Cardinal. Colorado won the only meeting last season 65-63 at Stanford. This is the only scheduled meeting between the two schools unless they meet in the Pac 12 tournament.
Colorado is coached by Tad Boyle. The team was ranked in the top 15 before their leading scorer guard Spencer Dinwiddie tore his ACL. The Buffaloes have losses to Baylor in Dallas and Oklahoma State in Las Vegas, at Washington, Arizona twice, and Arizona State, UCLA twice, and Saturday at Utah 75-64. Colorado has lost two straight games. The Buffaloes have key wins over Wyoming, Arkansas State, UC-Santa Barbara, Harvard, at Colorado State and Air Force, Kansas, Georgia, Oregon State, Oregon, Washington State twice, Washington, USC twice, Utah and Arizona State. Colorado is 15-13 ATS and the total is 15-12 this season.
Colorado is outscoring teams 73-69 this season. The Buffaloes are shooting 44.3% from the field and 32.2% from 3 point range. Colorado is #273 out of 351 teams in three point shooting. The Buffaloes make 72.4% of their free throws. Colorado opponents are shooting 43.4% from the field and 37.3% from 3 point range. Colorado is #303 in three point defense The Buffaloes are averaging 37.6 rebounds per game and opponents average 28.9 per game. Colorado is in the top 60 nationally in both categories. The Buffaloes average 12.3 assists, 14.2 turnovers, 6.3 steals and 3.9 blocks per game. Opponents average 14.8 assists, 11.9 turnovers, 7.3 assists, and 3.2 blocks per game.
Dinwiddie averaged 14.7 points, 3.1 rebounds, 3.8 assists, and 1.5 steals per game before the injury. Forward Josh Scott averages 14.6 points, 8.7 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game. Guard Askia Booker averages 14 points, 3.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists, and 1.5 steals per game. Forward Xavier Johnson averages 11.7 points and 6 rebounds per game. Forward Wesley Gordon averages 6.2 points, 6.1 rebounds, 1.1 assists, and 1.5 blocks per game. Guard Jaron Hopkins averages 5.3 points and 2.4 rebounds per game. Dustin Thomas and Xavier Talton will also get significant minutes. Guard/forward Tre’Shaun Fletcher is probable with a knee injury after missing the last 13 games.
Stanford is coached by Johnny Dawkins. The Cardinal have home losses to BYU, California and Arizona, road losses to Oregon State, UCLA, Washington, Arizona and Arizona State 79-66 Sunday, along with neutral site losses to Pittsburgh and Michigan, both in Brooklyn. The Cardinal have lost two straight games. Stanford has key home wins over Bucknell, Northwestern, UC-Davis, Cal Poly Washington State, Washington, Arizona State, USC, and UCLA, along with road wins at Denver, Connecticut, Oregon, USC, Cal and Washington State. The Cardinal also have a neutral site win over Houston in Brooklyn. The Cardinal are 16-9-1 ATS and the total is 13-12-1.
Stanford is outscoring teams 75-69 this season. The Cardinal are shooting 46.4% from the field and 38% from 3 point range. Stanford is #51 in 3 point shooting nationally. The Cardinals make 70.3% of their free throws. Stanford opponents are shooting 41.6% from the field and 36.3% from 3 point range. The Cardinal average 36 rebounds per game and opponents average 30.2. Stanford averages 12.3 assists, 11.1 turnovers, 5.1 steals and 4.6 blocks per game. Opponents average 13.7 assists, 11.4 turnovers, 5.5 steals, and 2.8 blocks per game.
Guard Chasson Randle averages 18.5 points, 3.6 rebounds, and 2.3 assists per game. Forward Dwight Powell averages 14.6 points, 7.5 rebounds, 3.6 assists, 1.4 steals, and 1 block per game. Guard-forward Anthony Brown averages 13.8 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 2.1 assists. Forward Josh Huestis averages 11.6 points, 8.5 rebounds, 1.2 assists, and 2 blocks per game. Center Stefan Nastic averages 6.9 points, 2.8 rebounds, 1.3 assists, and 1 block per game. John Gage and Robbie Lemons will also get time in the rotation. Guards Aaron Bright and Christian Sanders are both out for the season, along with forward Andy Brown.
Colorado is 4-1 ATS after failing to cover, 2-5 in road games, 3-8-1 against teams with winning home records, and 1-3-1 in Wednesday games. The under is 5-1 in this series recently.
Stanford is 6-0 ATS at home, 7-1 against teams with losing road records, 4-1 after a straight up loss, 10-4 overall and in Pac 12 games, and 11-5 in Wednesday games.
Both of these teams have lost 2 straight games, when they need wins to secure their position in the NCAA tournament. Both teams are comfortable playing in the low 70’s, and are pretty evenly matched. I think Stanford wins, but 8.5 seems like a lot of points.
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