Buffs To Tangle Wtih #21 Cowgirls
THE GAME: The University of Colorado will host No. 21 (AP)/18 (WBCA) Oklahoma State University on Saturday, Feb. 2, at 6 p.m. at the Coors Events/Conference Center.
FANS: The first 250 CU students to enter Saturday's game will receive a pair of Crocs while all fans who provide a ticket stub from the CU men's game against Kansas earlier in the day, will receive one free general admission ticket to the OSU game.
BROADCAST: Saturday's game will be televised live on Fox Sports Net Rocky Mountain. Tim Ring will provide the play-by-play with former CU head coach Ceal Barry giving the color commentary. Radio listeners can tune into KKZN AM 760 for Saturday's game. Mike Rice, in his second season, will have the play-by-play and he is joined by Carol Callan of USA Basketball with the color commentary. Live internet audio can be accessed through Yahoo! Sports.
THE BUFFALOES: Colorado is 13-7 overall and 2-5 in the Big 12 Conference. The Buffaloes have won just one of their last siix games since winning 11 in a row earlier in the season. Despite the recent skid, CU has equalled its win total from the 2006-07 season (13-17) and has its best record after 20 games since the 2003-04 squad started 18-2 en route to the program's last NCAA Tournament bid. The Buffaloes are 9-3 at home this season, 1-2 in Big 12 contests.
Senior All-America candidate Jackie McFarland leads the Buffaloes at 18.8 points and 7.8 rebounds per game while shooting a Big 12 best 60 percent from the field (125-of-210). Her numbers have gone up during league play averaging 21.6 points and 7.1 rebounds while shooting 62 percent (48-of-78). She is second on the team in assists (2.5 apg) and blocks (1.4 bpg). One of only three players in CU history with 1,600 points and 900 rebounds, McFarland became the school's all-time leader in free throws made by sinking all three at Iowa State on Jan. 30. She passed Bridget Turner, who had 494 from 1985-89, and sits all alone in the top spot at 495. The All-Big 12 forward once again can be found among the Top 10 in most league statistical categories ranking first in field-goal percentage, second in scoring and minutes, fifth in free-throw percentage.
Freshman Brittany Spears is making a name for herself as well. Named the Big 12 Rookie of the Week on Jan. 7, her 13.3 points per game average is on pace to be the best by a CU freshman since Shelley Sheetz averaged 14.1 in 1991-92 and the best by any first-year player since Isabelle Fijalkowski averaged 16.1 in 1994-95, her lone season in Boulder. Spears' numbers for rebounds (7.1 rpg), steals (2.1 spg) and blocks (1.3 bpg) are also on pace to be among the Top 5 performances by a CU freshman in team history. She leads CU in free-throw percentage (.848, 39-of-46) and steals and is tied for first in blocks, second in scoring and third in rebounding. Her scoring, rebounding and blocks per game top all freshmen in the Big 12 while she is also second in steals and fourth in assists (1.7 apg).
Senior guard Susie Powers has taken control of the Colorado offense from the point guard position averaging a team-best 4.2 assists per game. She's on pace to have the most assists by Buffs player since Mandy Nightingale had 161 (4.7 apg) during the 2001-02 season. Powers, who had a career-high 10 assists in the win over Pepperdine, is seventh in the nation and leads the Big 12 with a 2.3 assist-to-turnover ratio (83 assists-36 turnovers) and also ranks seventh in the Big 12 in assists.
Sophomore Aija Putnina has started the last 17 contests, helping the Buffaloes to a 12-5 mark in that span. She is averaging 8.1 points, 7.6 rebounds and leads the team with 28 blocks. Putnina is seventh in rebounding, eighth in blocked shots and ninth in free-throw percentage on the Big 12 charts. Putnina registered her first double-double in Big 12 play with a 12-point, 10-rebound performance at Missouri.
Junior Hannah Skildum, who has started the last 16 games, has provided a strong defensive presence to Colorado's back court. She has modest numbers, averaging 3.7 points, 1.9 rebounds and 1.1 assists on the season, but she's a key reason the Buffaloes can be found in the NCAA's Top 40 in several defensive categories including blocked shots, field-goal percentage defense, and scoring defense.
It's not just the starters, as the bench has been big too. Sophomore Bianca Smith is a formidable "Sixth-Woman" candidate in the Big 12 this season averaging 9.2 points off the bench for the Buffs. She leads the team in 3-pointers with 43 and already ranks 10th on CU's all-time 3-point list. Smith was named Big 12 Player of the Week on Dec. 10 after averaging 19.0 points and hitting 57 percent from the field in games against No. 22 (AP)/21 (WBCA) Wyoming and No. 20/17 Vanderbilt. Whitney Houston and Britney Blythe have also seen extended minutes in the Colorado backcourt. Houston had one of her best games of the season by scoring nine points on 3-of-6 from the field at Iowa State. Blythe played key minutes off the bench in Colorado's win over Kansas, scoring eight points and grabbing three rebounds.
Colorado has several front-court options off the bench. Freshman Courtney Dunn averaged 5.3 points, 4.0 rebounds, 1.3 assists while hitting 60 percent from the field during a four-game stretch that included games against Texas A&M and Kansas State. Juniors Caley Dow had five points and three rebounds at Iowa State while junior Kara Richards has made 58 percent of her shots on the season (21-of-36).
Colorado is averaging 66.6 points per game while holding opponents to 57.2 per contest. Overall CU is shooting 43 percent from the field and out rebounding opponents by 9.4 boards per game, but those numbers change during Big 12 play. The Buffaloes are averaging 60.4 points per game and shooting just under 40 percent from the field through seven Big 12 games while opponents hold a 2.6 per game rebounding edge. Colorado has made just 24 percent from 3-point range during the league slate while opponents have connected on 40 percent from downtown.
ABOUT THE COWGIRLS: No. 21 (AP)/18 (WBCA) Oklahoma State is 16-3 overall and tied with Nebraska for third in the Big 12 standings at 4-2. The Cowgirls, who have been ranked as high as No. 14 (AP)/13 (WBCA) this season, have lost two straight including a 68-63 setback at home to Kansas State in their last outing on Jan. 27. OSU is the Big 12's top scoring team at 79.4 points per game, but has been held under 70 in its last three contests (1-2). Sporting a 5-2 road record this season, Oklahoma State is second in the Big 12 in scoring defense (55.6 ppg), rebounding margin (+10.9) and turnover margin (+5.5) and also ranks third in field-goal percentage defense (.356) and 3-point field-goal percentage defense (.269)
Sophomore guard Andrea Riley leads the Big 12 in scoring (22.8 ppg) and steals (3.0 spg) and is also fourth in 3-point field-goal percentage (.371), seventh in free-throw percentage (.752) and eighth in assists (4.0 apg). Senior guard Danielle Green is second on the team in scoring at 13.6 points per game and leads the Cowgirls in rebounding at 7.3 per contest. Senior center Maria Cordero is third in scoring at 10 per contest while pulling down 5.7 rebounds per game.
SERIES RECORDS: This will be the 48th meeting between Colorado and Oklahoma State with the Buffaloes holding a 26-21 series lead. Colorado has won five of the last seven meetings, including the last three in Boulder. OSU has won two of the last three, with both wins coming in Stillwater. CU is 12-8 all-time against OSU in Boulder. The Cowgirls' last win at the Coors Events Center was a 75-72 decision on Jan. 29, 2000. Kathy McConnell-Miller is 4-3 as a head coach against Oklahoma State and 1-1 while with Colorado. McConnell-Miller's first and 100th career wins both came against OSU.
COLORADO AND OKLAHOMA STATE, LAST 10:
Date Result Date Result
1/24/07 (A) L, 58-61 1/12/02 (H) W, 79-57
2/26/06 (H) W, 73-62 1/10/01 (A) W, 65-49
1/22/05 (A) L, 70-76 OT 1/29/00 (H L, 72-75
2/21/04 (H) W, 72-57 1/28/99 (A) W, 62-58
1/22/03 (A) W, 64-50 2/14/98 (H) L, 67-72
998, 999, 1,000...The Oklahoma State game will mark Colorado's 999th women's basketball contest. In their 34th season, the Buffaloes sport an all-time record of 621-377 heading into Saturday's game. CU's 621 wins rank fifth among Big 12 teams -- with Kansas and Kansas State having played six more seasons than the Buffs -- and its .622 winning percentage ranks fourth trailing only Texas, Texas Tech and Kansas State. Colorado will play game No. 1,000 in its history at home against Nebraska on Feb. 6.
McFARLAND A NAISMITH SEMIFINALIST: Senior Jackie McFarland was named one of 31 semifinalists for the 2008 Naismith Award by the Atlanta Tipoff Club on Jan. 29.
A 2007 All-Big 12 pick and AP honorable mention All-American, McFarland currently leads the Big 12 and ranks in the nation's Top 10 in field-goal percentage while being listed second on the league charts in scoring and minutes. She was named as one of the five best power forwards in the country earlier this season by ESPN.com and she is also a candidate for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award.
Fan voting, which comprises 25 percent of the selection process, will run through April 5. For more information visit www.naismithawards.com.
SCORING DROUGHT: Poor shooting has hindered Colorado's ability to score over its last two games. Colorado managed just 44 points against Texas Tech and 45 against Iowa State in back-to-back losses, marking the first time since the 1983-84 season in which the Buffaloes were held under 50 points in consecutive games. CU was held under 50 in losses to Colorado State (48-63) and UNLV (41-67) in January 1984. The Buffaloes are shooting just 27 percent (28-of-103) over their last two games and their 24.1 percentage against Texas Tech (13-of-54) was the team's lowest total since making just 23.2 percent at Texas on Feb. 23, 2005.
NOTING THE KANSAS GAME: Colorado's 59-41 win over Kansas was won, in large part thanks to their defense. The 41 points allowed to the Jayhawks tied for the third lowest against a Big 12 opponent during the regular season. Three of the four lowest totals have come against the Jayhawks:
35 -- Colorado 70, at Kansas 35, Jan. 16, 2002
40 -- Colorado 69, at Texas A&M 40, Feb. 8, 1997
41 -- at Colorado 59, Kansas 41, Jan. 22, 2008
41 -- at Colorado 80, Kansas 41, Jan. 29, 2002
The 18-point margin of victory was also the highest by a Kathy McConnell-Miller led team in a Big 12 game, beating the previous margin of 14 against Iowa State on Jan. 10, 2007 (81-67).
YOUTH SERVED: Colorado's freshman class was key in the Buffaloes win over Kansas combining for 31 points, the most by a freshman class since the trio of Whitney Houston (25), Candace Rucker (6) and Aija Putnina (3) combined for 34 in a 70-68 overtime loss at Kansas last season. Brittany Spears led the way with 14 points while Courtney Dunn pitched in a career-high nine points and Britney Blythe had eight off the bench.
DOUBLE OT: Colorado went double-overtime for just the fifth time in school history and the first time at the Coors Events Center with its 84-77 loss to Iowa State on Jan. 13. It was the first double-overtme for CU since the Buffaloes defeated the Cyclones 68-66 at Iowa State on Jan. 18, 1997, and the Buffs fell to 16-20 all-time in overtime and 2-3 in double-overtime. Seniors Jackie McFarland and Susie Powers each played 48 minutes in the game, tying a school record initially set by Tracy Tripp against Oklahoma State on March 6, 1989.
BIG 12 OPENERS: Colorado evened its record in Big 12 Conference openers at 6-6 by defeating Missouri 70-58 on Jan. 9. It was Colorado's first season-opening Big 12 win on the road since the Buffs beat Baylor to begin the 2004 league slate. The 12-point margin was also the Buffs highest in a conference road opener since a 67-53 win at Missouri to open the 1993 Big Eight schedule. Colorado, now 20-14 in all-time conference openers, are 16-9 in home league openers since 1983 and 6-5 in the Big 12 era.
OPENING NIGHT STAR: Colorado freshman Brittany Spears joined some elite company in her Big 12 debut. Her 24 points were the second-most in team history for a freshman in her first league game. Only CU Athletic Hall of Fame member and 1995 All-American Shelley Sheetz had more points in a conference debut as she scored 25 during a 75-69 loss at Nebraska on Jan. 15, 1992. Her seven rebounds tie current teammate Jackie McFarland for the most by a freshman in a road opener since 1994. McFarland had seven in an 84-62 setback at Nebraska on Jan. 5, 2005.
NUMBERS ON 11 STRAIGHT: Colorado saw its 11-game win streak end against Iowa State, but the run was the seventh longest in team history and the most consecutive victories since the 1994-95 team matched a CU All-Sports record 25 straight wins (shared with the 1939-41 baseball team). Here are the Buffs' all-time best win streaks:
Wins Season Record Noteable
1. 25 1994-95 30-3 NCAA Elite Eight, 14-0 in Big Eight
2. 20 1988-89 27-4 NCAA 1st Round, 14-0 in Big Eight
3. 15 1992-93 27-4 NCAA Elite Eight, 15-0 season start
4. 14 1991-92 22-9 NCAA 1st Rd, Big Eight Tourney Champs
5. 12 1981-82 28-8 AIAW National 1st Round
12 1980-81 28-5 First of two 9-plus winning streaks in -81
7. 11 2007-08 -- First 11-plus streak since 1994-95
8. 9 2003-04 22-8 NCAA 1st Round
9 1993-94 27-5 NCAA Sweet 16
9 1992-93 27-4 NCAA Elite Eight, Big Eight Champs
9 1980-81 28-5 First AIAW National Appearance
9 1978-79 22-9 3rd place in AIAW Regional
PERFECT DECEMBER: Colorado registered a perfect 7-0 record for the month of December for the first time since 2003-04, and for just the sixth time in team history. The Buffaloes matched the 1980-81 and 1981-82 teams which were both 7-0 in December. The 1992-93 team had a program best December mark of 9-0, while the 2002-03 squad was 6-0 and 5-0 in 2003-04. CU is 118-54 (.686) all-time in the month of December.
DEFENSE WINS: Colorado has enjoyed some impressive defensive numbers this season.
The Buffaloes have held six opponents under 50 points in 2007; 29-vs. Texas Southern, 38-vs. Southern Utah, 41-vs. Kansas, 43-vs. Dartmouth, 47-at Colorado State and 48-at San Francisco. CU had held their opponent under 50 points just three times total in the previous three seasons.
CU yielded less than 50 points in three-straight games -- Texas Southern, Dartmouth and Southern Utah -- the first such streak since 2003-04. The Buffs' six sub-50 point defensive performances are the most in one season since the 2002-03 squad registered nine.
Against Dartmouth, Colorado had 13 blocked shots, the second highest single-game total in team history, trailing only the school record 16 set against Sam Houston in a 99-60 win on Dec. 14, 2000. CU followed up that performance with 12 against Iowa State on Jan. 13. The Buffaloes, who have three games this season with 10 or more blocks, ranked 13th in the NCAA in blocked shots through games of Jan. 27.
Colorado had a historic performance from a defensive perspective against Texas Southern. The Buffaloes held the Lady Tigers to just 29 points, which ties for the fourth-lowest total in team history (equals a 79-29 win over Iowa State on Feb. 19, 1993). It was just the fifth time in CU history the Buffs have held an opponent under 30 points (the ISU game in 1993 being the last). CU allowed just 13 second-half points, tying for the second-lowest second-half total in team history (also done in the ISU game and against Utah State on Jan. 28, 1981). The Buffaloes forced Texas Southern into 32 turnovers, the most since forcing 35 against Detroit Mercy on Nov. 24, 2002.
SMITH, SPEARS EARN BIG 12 WEEKLY HONORS: Colorado has been recognized with Big 12 weekly honors twice this season.
Sophomore guard Bianca Smith was named the Phillips 66 Big 12 Conference Women's Basketball Player of the Week on Dec. 10 and freshman forward Brittany Spears was named Rookie of the Week on Jan. 7. The Big 12 honors were a first for both players.
Spears helped Colorado register its 10th straight win by scoring 16 points and grabbing seven rebounds in a 65-53 decision over Pepperdine on Jan. 4. She tied a personal-best with seven field goals and made them on just 10 attempts (.700). Spears had an outstanding all-around game by also recording four assists, four steals and one blocked shots.
Smith averaged 19 points, two assists and two rebounds off the bench while leading Colorado to wins over No. 22 (AP)/21 (WBCA) Wyoming and at No. 20/17 Vanderbilt. Colorado broke a 23-game losing streak against ranked teams with its 69-55 win over Wyoming on Dec. 5. The Buffaloes then made it wins in back-to-back games over ranked teams for the first time since the 2002 NCAA Tournament with a 62-51 triumph at Vanderbilt on Dec. 9.
Against Wyoming, Smith scored 16 points on 5-of-8 from the floor with three assists as Colorado broke a three-game losing streak against the Cowgirls. She was 4-of-7 from 3-point range and her final two from downtown were clutch as they provided the answer to a 14-3 Wyoming run that cut the CU lead to just one with 5:11 remaining.
Smith had an even bigger game against Vanderbilt. She had a career-high 22 points on 7-of-14 from the field with three rebounds, one steal and one assist as the Buffs handed the Commodores just their second loss in their last 23 home games. Smith scored 13 of CU's first 17 points to erase an early 8-0 Vanderbilt lead, and hit four straight free throws in the final seconds of the game to close it out.
RANK STREAK IS OVER: Colorado had its biggest week in early December in several years in terms of success against ranked teams.
Colorado's 69-55 win over No. 21/22 Wyoming snapped a 23-game Buffs' losing streak to ranked teams. The Buffaloes last win over a ranked opponent had been a 69-59 decision at No. 24 Baylor on Jan. 7, 2004 where CU was ranked No. 14 at the time. The win was Colorado's first against a ranked team while being unranked since knocking off No. 12 North Carolina 86-67 in the second round of the 2003 NCAA Tournament.
The Buffaloes kept the momentum going four days later with a 62-51 win at No. 20/17 Vanderbilt. The win gave CU's its first two-game win streak against ranked teams since knocking off No. 23 Washington and No. 24 Baylor in 2003-04. It's the first pair of wins over two ranked teams in back-to-back games since the 2002 NCAA Tournament when the Buffs defeated No. 22/24 LSU in the second round and No. 5 Stanford in the Sweet 16. It was Colorado's first win on the road over a ranked opponent since defeating No. 24 Baylor 69-59 in Waco, Texas, on Jan. 7. 2004. It was CU's first win over a ranked opponent as an unranked team since defeating No. 12 Texas in Austin, 60-56, on Feb. 26, 1997.
RANKING OF OUR OWN: With its recent 1-5 slide, Colorado did not receive votes in either the AP or WBCA Top 25 polls released this week. CU had at least received votes for six-straight weeks from Dec. 10 through Jan. 22. The Buffaloes were ranked in four straight AP polls, peaking at No. 23 on Jan. 1 and Jan. 8. The Buffaloes debuted in the 2007 AP poll at No. 25 on Dec. 24 for their first national ranking since finishing No. 17 (AP)/No. 24 (WBCA) in the final 2003-04 polls. Colorado has a rich tradition in the AP poll, making 158 appearances since 1980. The Buffs were ranked in 75 straight polls from Mar. 15, 1992 to Dec. 9, 1996 and 30 straight from Jan. 22, 2001 to Mar. 22, 2002.
With Colorado's early-season AP ranking, Buffs head coach Kathy McConnell-Miller became the 22nd person in NCAA Division I women's history to play for and coach an AP ranked team. McConnell-Miller was a four-year letterwinner at Virginia (1986-90) where she played in four NCAA Tournaments with the Cavaliers including a pair of Sweet 16 appearances and the 1988 Elite Eight.
REVERSING ROAD WOES: Colorado is 4-4 on the road this season and had won three straight for the first time since 2003-04 before falling at Kansas State on Jan. 19. The four wins doubles the team road win total from the previous two seasons combined (1-10 in 2006-07 and 1-9 in 2004-05) and one more would match CU's win total from the previous three seasons (5-28). CU's 82-47 win over Colorado State was significant on several fronts. The 35-point margin was the Buffs' highest on the road since a 70-35 win over Kansas on Jan. 16, 2002 and it was also their largest win over Colorado State (regardless of venue) since a 112-48 win on Nov. 16, 1979. The 82 points were the most CU has scored on an opponents home court since the Buffs' last trip to Moby Arena, an 86-83 loss to the Rams on Nov. 30, 2005. Colorado broke Vanderbilt's 10-game home winning streak and handed the Commodores just their second loss in 23 home games, the other coming last season against eventual national champion Tennessee.
3-POINTERS FALLING: Colorado's 3-point shooting has cooled off during the first six Big 12 games as the Buffs have made just 24 percent and average 4.3 made per game. However, the Buffaloes are still on pace to have their most prolific season from 3-point range in team history. With a guarantee of 10 games remaining on the schedule, CU's current pace of 7.0 3-pointers made per game would give the Buffs 209 for the season, passing the school record of 196 in 2001-02. CU's current pace of 22.5 attempts per game would net 674 in 10 more contests, well over the school record of 501 also set in 2001-02.
Colorado is second in the Big 12 Conference and ranks 18th in the nation in 3-point field goals per game. The Buffaloes have a school single-season record six games with 10 or more 3-point field goals. The previous season high was five in the 34-game 2001-02 season. CU had a season-high 14 against Colorado State, its second best single-game total (CU had 16 against Buffalo on Jan. 3, 2004). That came during a string of netting 10 or more 3-pointers in four straight games for the first time. The Buffs had 10 3-pointers against Wyoming and Northern Colorado and 13 against Rice. Against UNC, the Buffs set a school record for 3-point field goal attempts in one half with 21 in the first stanza and finished the game with 36 attempts, just one shy of the school record of 37 set against Buffalo on Jan. 3, 2004.
Individually, it hasn't been one player doing the damage. Ten different players on the CU roster have at least two 3-point field goals and nine have attempted at least 10. Sophomore Bianca Smith leads the team with 43, 41 of which have come in the last 15 games. Brittany Spears is second with 30 and Susie Powers has 17.
NUMBERS FOR McFARLAND: Jackie McFarland has had five double-doubles this season ranking fourth in the Big 12 Conference. She ranks second in CU history in career double-doubles with 42 and her 43 career double-digit rebounding games are third on the CU career charts.
McFarland needs just five points to become the fourth player in school history to reach 1,700. She became the third player in team history to reach 900 rebounds during the Kansas State game and needs 75 to reach 1,000.
McFarland is CU's all-time leader in free-throws made with 495, just passing Bridget Turner, who had 494 from 1985-89, during the Iowa State game. She is fourth in blocked shots (127), sixth in minutes (3,416) and eighth in field goals made (587).
McFARLAND NOMINATED FOR SENIOR CLASS AWARD: Senior forward Jackie McFarland has been named one of 30 nationwide candidates for the 2008 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award.
The award - presented annually to the NCAA Division I Student-Athlete of the Year in eight sports - focuses on the "Four C's" of classroom, character, community and competition. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the award was launched during the 2001-02 season to honor the attributes of college basketball seniors who remain committed to their university and pursue the many rewards that a senior season and complete college education brings.
A native of Derby, Kan., McFarland is a two-time Academic All-American sporting a 3.86 GPA. She is working on a concurrent degree program which will allow her to earn her MBA while completing her undergraduate degree in accounting. McFarland won CU's Scholar-Athlete Award in the spring of 2007 for having the highest GPA in her class. McFarland is a three-year team captain and is actively involved in CU's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. SAAC is the governing body for student-athletes at CU which assists in the development and implementation of programs that motivate student-athletes to strive for and be recognized for academic excellence and community involvement.
From the list of 30 nominees for each gender, a national media committee will select 10 finalists to be announced Feb. 6. Those 10 names will then be put to ballot for a nationwide vote during the NCAA Tournament in March. Fan balloting will be coupled with votes from coaches and media to determine the male and female recipients.
CAPTAINS NAMED: Seniors Jackie McFarland and Susie Powers and junior Caley Dow will serve as team captains for the 2007-08 season. McFarland is a captain for a third straight season, Powers is in her second year as captain and Dow is a captain for the first time. CU team captains are voted on by players prior to the first regular season contest each year.
McFARLAND PRESEASON ALL-BIG 12; BUFFS PICKED 11TH: Senior forward Jackie McFarland has been named to the 2007-08 Preseason All-Big 12 Conference Women's Basketball team by a vote of league coaches.
McFarland is CU's second preseason All-Big 12 honoree as former Buffaloes standout Erin Scholz was named to the 1996-97 squad. She joins Nebraska forward Kelsey Griffin, Oklahoma center Courtney Paris and Texas A&M guards A'Quonesia Franklin and Takia Starks on the five-member preseason team. All five players were first team All-Big 12 picks last winter.
McFarland topped the Big 12 and ranked third in the nation in field-goal accuracy in 2006-07 at 61 percent. She was second in the Big 12 in scoring (17.8 ppg) and rebounding (10.8 rpg) and led the league in minutes at 36.4 per game.
Despite returning eight players from a team that finished tied for seventh last season, the Buffaloes were picked to finish 11th in the Big 12 in 2007-08 in annual preseason coaches poll.
Defending co-champion Texas A&M was picked to win the 2008 title with seven first place votes and 117 points overall, just edging out the league's other co-champion, Oklahoma who had the other five first place votes and 115 points. The Big South held down the top five spots in the poll as Baylor was third with 97 points followed by Texas (86) and Oklahoma State (66). Iowa State was the top North school (64) followed by Nebraska (56), Kansas State and Texas Tech (54 each), Kansas (43), Colorado (29) and Missouri (11).
TOUGH SCHEDULE: Colorado once again faces a tough schedule with no less than 16 games against 2007 NCAA or WNIT tournament teams. The Buffaloes will travel to perennial NCAA women's powers Southern California and Vanderbilt during the non-conference season as well as region rival Colorado State. Colorado will host 2007 WNIT Champion Wyoming and will also see Rice, Clemson and Pepperdine at the Coors Events Center. Texas A&M, Oklahoma State and Texas come to Boulder this year out of the Big 12 South along with the Buffs' usual Big 12 North opponents.
HOME AT THE CECC: Colorado is traditionally tough at home with a 316-95 all-time record at the Coors Events/Conference Center (.769). The Buffaloes have won 10 or more games in a season at the CECC in 19 of the previous 29 years including, 2006-07 when the Buffaloes went 11-5 at home with four of the five losses coming to ranked teams. The Buffaloes have enjoyed five undefeated seasons (1980-83, 1992-94) at the CECC.
BUFFS ON TV: Colorado's schedule features 10 games that will be televised either regionally or nationally, nine of which will be carried by Fox Sports Net. Two games are part of the Big 12's national package with FSN: Sunday, Jan. 13 against Iowa State at home and Saturday, Jan. 26, at Texas Tech. FSN Rocky Mountain is televising seven CU home games which began with Wyoming on Dec. 5. CU's game at Colorado State on Dec. 1 was televised by The Mtn. Network.
UP NEXT: Colorado will resume action on Wednesday, Feb. 6, by hosting the University of Nebraska for an 8 p.m. tipoff at the Coors Events Center. The game will be televised live on FSN Rocky Mountain.