|Josh Scott and the Buffs have been rolling, but they need to get pushed a little more. From: the BDC|
However, while Colorado is certainly improving each time out on the court, there's a clear tipping point against under-talented opponents. I don't know how much more anyone can learn watching many more matchups like these. The Buffs need a higher degree of difficulty if we're to determine just how good they are.
Happily, the schedule obliges, as the difficulty dial is about to slowly get cranked up to 11. Starting Thursday night with UC-Santa Barbara, and culminating on December 7th with Kansas, the schedule will only get tougher as each game approaches. The climb up the collegiate ranks will provide a nightly litmus test.
|The scrappy Gauchos are a step above teams like Arkansas St.|
UCSB is lead by beefy (6-7, 275 *ahem*) center Alan Williams. The junior was a pre-season selection to the All-Big West team, and has backed it up when on the court this year, averaging 24/13 in two starts. In the month of small sample size, he leads the nation in both usage categories, as is top-50 in both offensive and defensive rebounding rate. This guy is a load.
|Williams is a legitimately good post player.|
Other than Williams, look out for sharpshooting senior guard Kyle Boswell. The 6-2 shooting guard is 10-20 from deep on the year, and can cause headaches if the Buffs aren't paying attention. Additionally, I like wing Michael Bryson. The 6-4 sophomore is a developing scorer who has over 12 points per game this season.
|Deny the shooter, Boswell.|
If Willimas doesn't make the trip, the Buffs should roll to another easy win, but, for the sake of argument, I'll assume the big man suits up. CU should still win in this scenario, but the outing would look much more like the Baylor/Wyoming games than the trio of blowouts. Honestly, for competition's sake, I hope Williams is healthy; it'll make for a fun game. Regardless, UCSB should be a mid-major force as the season develops, and a nice, low-key feather in the scheduling cap for the Buffs... assuming a win, of course.
Tip-off from the CEC is set for 6pm Thursday night. Televised coverage on Pac-12 Networks, with the radio call on AM760.
GO BUFFS! PROVE ME RIGHT, AND BEAT THE GAUCHOS!