Lawrence, KS (Sports Network) - Former Big 12 Conference foes will square off
at Allen Fieldhouse on Saturday afternoon, as the ninth-ranked Kansas Jayhawks
play host to the Colorado Buffaloes.
Colorado was able to work its way into the Top-25 following an impressive 6-0
start, but it promptly fell from the ranks after a Dec. 1 loss at Wyoming
(76-69). The Buffs managed to get back on the winning track at home
on Wednesday night, defeating in-state rival Colorado State, 70-61.
Kansas has also been very impressive on the young season, with its lone loss
coming on a neutral floor to nationally-ranked Michigan State, 67-64. Since
that defeat, the Jayhawks have ripped off five straight wins, most recently
beating Oregon State on Nov. 30, 84-78.
As members of the Big 12 for so many years, these two programs became very
familiar with one another. Kansas has the upper hand in the all-time series,
122-39, and the Jayhawks have been incredibly dominant of late, winning 20 in
a row and 47 of the last 48 games between the two dating back to 1991.
Colorado has gotten off to a strong start shooting the ball this season, as it
makes better than 46 percent of its field goal attempts for 74.4 ppg, 7.0 ppg
more than its opponents. The Buffs were nearly right on their average in their
recent win over Colorado State as they made good on 46 percent of their total
shots (including 6-of-13 from three-point range) as they got out to a 20-point
halftime lead and never looked back. Spencer Dinwiddie shined in the victory
with a career-high 29 points, and Andre Roberson controlled the paint with 15
points, 14 rebounds, three steals and two blocks. Dinwiddie has been on fire
lately, scoring 24 points or more in three straight games to give him a team-
high 17.8 ppg on better than 54 percent shooting from three-point range.
Roberson is one of the premiere power forwards in the nation (12.0 ppg, 11.5
rpg), especially at the defensive end where he racks up 2.4 spg and 1.5 bpg.
Askia Booker (14.1 ppg) and Josh Scott (12.0 ppg, 5.6 rpg) are also regular
contributors to a potent starting lineup.
The Jayhawks are fresh off their best offensive performance of the season, as
they shot a lofty 60 percent from the field in holding off Oregon State for
what wound up as a six-point decision. Ben McLemore scored a team-high 21
points on 8-of-14 shooting from the field (3-of-4 from three-point range), and
Travis Releford was just as good with 20 points, seven rebounds, five assists
and two steals. Jeff Withey tallied 17 points and three blocks, and Kevin
Young chipped in with 10 points. On the season, Kansas has nearly an identical
scoring output as Colorado, making 46.4 percent of its field goal attempts for
73.1 ppg. McLemore is the team's leading scorer with nearly 15 ppg, but the
redshirt freshman is more than just a talented shooter, adding 5.7 rpg, 2.4
apg, 1.1 spg and 1.0 bpg to his stat line. Jeff Withey is a force down low,
scoring 14.6 ppg, hauling in 8.1 rpg, and leading the country in blocked shots
with a whooping 5.7 per contest. Releford (13.1 ppg, 3.0 apg) and Elijah
Johnson (10.0 ppg, 4.9 apg) are two very talented guards to complement
McLemore in the backcourt.
The Sports Network