Arkansas State (2-1) at Colorado (3-1)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Monday, November 18, 9 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Coors Events Center (11,064) -- Boulder, Colorado. Television: Pac-12 Network. Home Record: Arkansas State 1-0, Colorado 3-0. Away Record: Arkansas State 1-1, Colorado 0-1. Neutral Record: Arkansas State 0-0, Colorado 0-0. Conference Record: Arkansas State 0-0, Colorado 0-0. Series Record: Colorado leads, 1-0.
GAMES NOTES: The Colorado Buffaloes will try to keep a winning streak going when they host the Arkansas State Red Wolves in a non-conference matchup at Coors Events Center.
Arkansas State is looking to start a winning streak after they suffered an 85-64 loss to Wyoming when they last hit the floor. The setback put a halt to a brief two-game win streak for the Red Wolves to start the year. The two victories came at Jackson State (65-61) and against Tennessee-Martin (72-62). Uneven efforts on the road were an issue for the Red Wolves last season when they went 5-9 away from Jonesboro.
The Buffaloes have bounced back nicely from a 72-60 loss on the road to No. 23 Baylor in the season opener. Since then, the Buffaloes have won three straight games, all at home, with victories over the same three teams the Red Wolves have faced this season. The most recent was a 94-70 rout of Jackson State which followed triumphs over Tennesse-Martin (91-65) and Wyoming (63-58).
The first and only other time these teams met was during the 1991 season when Colorado posted an 81-75 victory over the Red Wolves in the quarterfinals of the postseason NIT.
The Red Wolves were abused down low and didn't put forth much defensive interference to stop Wyoming on Saturday. Arkansas State was outscored 36-20 in the paint and had a 35-28 deficit on the boards, while allowing the Cowboys to put in 56.3 percent of their shots from the field.
The Red Wolves really need to get better on offense to be competitive. As a team they are shooting at just a 39.4 percent clip from the field, while failing to move the ball well by averaging just 11 assists per game. Melvin Johnson III (16.7 ppg) has done all he can to keep the offense moving. Johnson scored 22 points in the loss to Wyoming as one of just two players in double figures for Arkansas State. Kirk Van Slyke (14.3 ppg, 4.3 rpg) scored 13 points against Wyoming and is shooting at a solid 53.3 percent rate this season. Cameron Golden (12.0 ppg) is the third and final member of the team averaging in double figures. Golden had only seven points on 2-of-7 shooting against Wyoming but his efforts off the bench have been extremely valuable.
Colorado dominated in its win over Jackson State. The Buffaloes connected on 62.2 percent of their shots from the field, including 9-of-17 from beyond the arc, as seven players scored in double figures for the 24-point victory.
Colorado has been a much more effective offensive team. The Buffaloes are shooting at a 47.3 percent clip from the field and netting 77 points per game. Meanwhile, they are allowing just 66.3 points per game on 40.1 percent shooting to their foes. Josh Scott (13.2 ppg, 8.8 rpg) has anchored the team offensively down low, while also serving as an extremely productive contributor on the glass. Spencer Dinwiddie (12.2 ppg, 3.0 apg) is still not shooting well (.286), but he has shown strong ability in getting to the free throw line and in distributing. Askia Booker (11.2 ppg) and Xavier Johnson (11.0 ppg) are also averaging in double figures, though Johnson did not play against Jackson State with a minor injury. Booker scored a team-high 15 points in the victory.
With Johnson expected to play on Monday the Buffaloes have too much depth on both ends of the floor for the Red Wolves to really present much of a challenge.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Colorado 82, Arkansas State 66
11/18 10:33:07 ET