Covering University of Colorado sports, mostly basketball, since 2010

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Quick Post: On "Mediocre"

In the wake of the Stanford game, a blow-out loss to cap a rough swing through NorCal, I'm not surprised that Coach Boyle dropped the term "mediocre" when describing his team.  Boyle had just sat through a 10-minute stretch of basketball as rough as any I've seen over the past decade, as the Cardinal used a 32-5 second-half run to bash the Buffs into submission, and it's hard to think happy thoughts minutes after your defense implodes in front of you.

But I think it's unfair to fret too much over this past weekend's trip to the Bay Area.  Outside of that 32-5 stretch of play in Saturday's second half, the Buffs actually played Stanford and Cal even (109-109).  70 of the 80 minutes played over the weekend were fine.  Additionally, I don't expect many teams to stroll through San Fran and grab a split.  Most of the conference will do exactly what the Buff did this weekend: take the 0-fer. 

Essentially, I'm going to lose a lot more sleep if CU drops a game this weekend than I did over last weekend's results. Stanford and Cal are the toughest trip in the conference, and the number of teams that play well on the road with any consistency is quite small.  The Buffs lost to two good teams on the road; that's not exactly a surprise.

Sure, you want to set higher standards, but my overall opinion of this basketball team is essentially unchanged from where it was Thursday morning.  CU is still going to be dominant at home, struggle to beat a few of the Pac-12 dregs on the road (mostly through sheer will), and maybe come close to stealing a win they shouldn't.  Even without a win out of the last road trip, the squad is still in great position to reach postseason play, and they're probably going to finish the season in the top-half of the table. 

That's a win for a squad that continues to exist in a state of transition as Coach Boyle and staff look for answers and consistency in life after Burks and Higgins.  It may not be pretty, but this team is one of the "better" teams in the conference.  Down as the Pac-12 may be, that doesn't make the Buffs "mediocre" in my eyes.  Glass half-full, or some such nonsense.

Breathe easy Buff Nation, there's still plenty of basketball yet to be played.

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