Northern Arizona (4-6) at Colorado (8-2)
The Sports Network
DATE & TIME: Friday, December 21, 8:30 p.m. (et)
FACTS & STATS: Site: Coors Events Center (11,064) -- Boulder, Colorado.
Television: Pac-12 Network. Home Record: NAU 2-2, Colorado 4-0. Away Record:
NAU 1-3, Colorado 1-2. Neutral Record: NAU 1-1, Colorado 3-0. Conference
Record: NAU 1-1, Colorado 0-0. Series Record: Colorado leads, 3-0.
GAMES NOTES: After a nine-day respite the Colorado Buffaloes return to the
hardwood on Friday night to host the Northern Arizona Lumberjacks in a non-
conference matchup at the Coors Events Center.
While the Buffaloes have been off the Lumberjacks have been busy with this
game being their third in the last five days. Northern Arizona fell to Montana
62-56 on Wednesday. Overall the Lumberjacks are 4-6 this season including a
less than impressive 1-3 mark on the road.
Colorado was in action last Wednesday when it earned a 50-43 victory on the
road over Fresno State. Since then the Buffaloes have not had to worry about
having their 8-2 record challenged. Colorado has traded wins and losses over
its last four contests after starting the season off at 6-0. The only losses
for the Buffaloes have come on the road to No. 9 Kansas and an undefeated
Wyoming squad. Colorado has yet to lose in four chances on its home floor.
This game is the first between these two programs since the 1991-92 season
when Colorado secured a 90-66 victory. The Buffaloes won the other two
contests before that one and lead the all-time series 3-0.
Northern Arizona let a 33-29 lead at halftime slip away in the second half in
its loss to Montana. The game was tied 53-53 with 5:49 remaining but a 5-0
spurt from the Grizzlies separated the squads as the Lumberjacks missed its
final 10 field goal attempts. Northern Arizona shot just 35.2 percent in the
game, including a 6-of-26 effort in the second frame. Gabe Rogers scored a
game-high 16 points and nailed five 3-pointers but missed a pair of shots from
beyond the arc in the final minutes.
Dewayne Russell (16.5 ppg, 4.0 apg) is the lead scorer on the squad, while
playing the second most minutes per game (33.6) on the roster. Rogers (15.8
ppg) is the only player putting in more time on the court than Russell (33.9).
The pair have combined to score 47.1 percent of the team's points this season.
Max Jacobsen (7.7 ppg, 4.9 rpg) is the third option while Gaellen Bewernick
(7.1 ppg, 5.9 rpg) is the top player on the glass. Despite having the offense
run through just two players regularly the Lumberjacks have still managed to
lead the Big Sky in assists (15.4 pg) this year. The real weakness is on the
defensive end where NAU has been lit up for 75.6 points per game, while foes
shoot at a 44.9 percent clip.
Andre Roberson absolutely dominated the paint to help Colorado bully Fresno
State last Wednesday. Roberson scored a game-high 17 points and ripped down 20
rebounds which aided the Buffaloes who shot just 31.8 percent in the second
half, while turning the ball over 18 times in the contest. Colorado played
solid defense as a team and limited the Bulldogs to just 29.6 percent
For his efforts against Fresno State, Roberson earned Pac-12 Player of the
Week honors. Roberson (12.1 ppg, 12.3 rpg) has been a beast in the paint for
Colorado and is currently the third-most productive player on the glass in the
nation. The junior forward had brought in at least 10 rebounds in eight games
this year and posted double-doubles five times, including five of the last six
games. The leading offensive options for the Buffaloes reside in the backcourt
with Spencer Dinwiddie (14.7 ppg) and Askia Booker (14.2 ppg) each scoring at
a relatively high rate. Josh Scott (12.6 ppg, 6.7 rpg) is also scoring in
double figures and contributing solid numbers on the boards. No other player
on the roster is scoring more than 5.5 points per game for Colorado which
relies heavily on its starting five.
Although depth is an issue for Colorado the Buffaloes still have a more
balanced attack and more scoring options than Northern Arizona.
Sports Network Predicted Outcome: Colorado 70, Northern Arizona 52
12/21 10:33:58 ET
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