Buffaloes Host Kansas Wednesday In Big 12 Bout
THE GAME: The University of Colorado will play its first home game of its final Big 12 Conference season by hosting the University of Kansas on Wednesday, Jan. 12, at 7 p.m. at the Coors Events Center.
BROADCAST: Wednesday's game will be televised by FSN Rocky Mountain. Tom Helmer will have the call with legendary CU head coach Ceal Barry providing the color commentary and Alanna Rizzo reporting from the sidelines. Due to a conflict with the CU men's game, Wednesday's contest can be heard live on KVCU AM 1190. Mike Rice will handle play-by-play duties while Carol Callan of USA Basketball provides the color commentary. Live internet audio is available on CUBuffs.com, through the BuffsRadio free subscription.
OPENING TIP: Colorado returns home to face Kansas where it has won three straight and nine of 10 this season. CU will play its next two at home and four of its next five.
THE BUFFALOES: Colorado, 9-5 overall, was arguably dealt the toughest hand to start the 2010 Big 12 season, as the Buffaloes opened on the road against a scortching hot Texas A&M University. Ranked No. 7 by the Associated Press and No. 5 by the coaches, the Aggies lived up to their preseason billing with an 85-57 win over the Buffaloes on Jan. 8.
Despite giving up a season-high 85 points to a Texas A&M team averaging right around that amount per game, Colorado has played well defensively this season, giving up just 57 points a game while opponents are only shooting 36 percent from the field. The Buffaloes have been even more stringent from the 3-point line, allowing just 24.2 percent from beyond the arc which leads the Big 12 and ranks eighth in the nation. Colorado has also been winning the battle of the boards, outrebounding its opponent in 11 of 14 games and by an average of over six boards an outing.
Senior guard/forward Brittany Spears leads CU and ranks fifth in the Big 12 in scoring at 17.6 points per game. She is also fifth in defensive rebounds (5.4 drpg), sixth in 3-point field goals made (2.4 3mpg), ninth in overall rebounding (7.6 rpg) and 14th in steals (1.7 spg) on the league charts. She is coming off her third-straight 21-point effort, giving her 37 career games of 20 or more points. Spears, who is averaging 21.3 points over the last four contests, has registered double digits in 13 of 14 games this season and in 92 of 107 career outings. She is also second on the team in steals (24) and assists (24).
Sophomore guard Chucky Jeffery is CU's top rebounder (9.1 rpg) while ranking second on the team in scoring at 14.8 an outing. Jeffery has six double-doubles this season, ranking second in the Big 12 behind Oklahoma State's Toni Young who has seven, including the second triple-double in team history by recording 10 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists against Loyola Chicago. Jeffery ranks second in the Big 12 in steals at 3.1 per game (43) and is also third in defensive rebounding (6.6 drpg) and overall boards (9.1 rpg), seventh in assists (4.8 apg), eighth in minutes (32.5), 12th in offensive rebounds (2.6 orpg) and 14th in scoring on the Big 12 charts.
Sophomore guard/forward Meagan Malcolm-Peck is averaging eight points and 5.2 rebounds and leads the Buffaloes with 11 blocked shots. She is averaging 10.5 points over the last two games and has made 11 of her last 20 field goal attempts (.550), including 5-of-9 from 3-point range.
Junior forward Julie Seabrook is averaging 6.7 points and 5.7 rebounds per game while shooting a team-best 53 percent from the field (37-of-70). She has shot 60 percent or better in seven of 14 games, and 50 percent or better in nine of 14 outings. Seabrook has three games of double-digit rebounds.
Freshman guard Brittany Wilson is averaging 7.6 points and 3.4 rebounds per game and is one of three Buffs -- joining Spears and Jeffery -- with at least 20 assists and 20 steals. Since entering the starting lineup against North Dakota, Wilson has averaged 13.5 points, three rebounds and three steals while shooting 47 percent from the field (8-of-17) and 50 percent (5-of-10) from 3-point range.
FIRST LINEUP SHAKE-UP NETS GREAT RESULTS: After sporting the same starting lineup for the season's first 12 games, the Buffaloes made a switch against North Dakota by giving freshman guard Brittany Wilson her first career start and bringing forward Meagan Malcolm-Peck off the bench, and both players responded in outstanding fashion. Wilson scored 15 points including a career-best four 3-pointers. Malcolm-Peck responded with her second career double-double, finishing with 11 points and 10 rebounds.
BENCH PRODUCING: With nine active players available, the Buffaloes have been making good use of their bench averaging 13.7 points, 12.1 rebounds and four assists per game. Brittany Wilson is CU's leader in points off the bench with 79, though she has started the last two games. Senior Chelsea Dale has pitched in 5.6 points and 2.8 rebounds in the five games since her return. Freshman post Rachel Hargis is pulling down 4.3 rebounds over the last three games, bolstered by a career-best seven in the win over Colgate.
ABOUT THE JAYHAWKS: Kansas is 13-2 overall having won five straight before dropping its Big 12 opener at home to Texas Tech, 61-77, on Jan. 8. The Jayhawks, currently receiving votes in the latest Associated Press and WBCA Coaches polls, average 78.4 points per game while shooting an outstanding 49.2 percent from the field (437-of-889), a number which leads the Big 12 and ranks fourth in the nation. Like Colorado, Kansas has played solid perimeter defense allowing opponents just 26 percent from 3-point range, and 35 percent overall. KU has held its last six opponents to 61 points or less.
Sophomore forward Carolyn Davis leads the Jayhawks and ranks third in the Big 12 in scoring at 19.1 points per game. A 2010 All-Big 12 Freshman team pick, Davis leads the Big 12 and ranks second in the nation in field-goal percentage at 66.7 percent (98-of-147) while also pulling down 8.4 rebounds per game. Junior forward Aishah Sutherland tops Kansas and ranks second in the Big 12 in rebounds at 9.5 per game while scoring 11.5 per contest. Freshman guard Keena Mays is dishing out 5.6 assists per game and is KU's top deep threat, hitting 50 percent from 3-point range (16-of-32).
SERIES RECORDS: This will be the 66th meeting between Colorado and Kansas with the Buffaloes holding a slight 33-32 edge in the series. The Jayhawks have won four of the last five, including a season sweep in 2010 as KU won 79-72 in Boulder and 75-64 in Lawrence, Kan. CU has won 13 of 20 over the Jayhawks since 2001. The Buffaloes' last win over Kansas came in Boulder, a 69-62 decision on Feb. 18, 2009.
COLORADO AND KANSAS, LAST 10:
Date Result Date Result
2/16/10 (H) L, 72-79 1/22/08 (H) W, 59-41
1/27/10 (A) L, 64-75 2/24/07 (H) W, 59-50
2/18/09 (H) W, 69-62 2/6/06 (A) L, 68-70 OT
2/4/09 (A) L, 54-65 2/1/06 (A) W, 77-71
2/13/08 (A) L, 59-70 1/10/06 (H) W, 74-65
JEFFERY 'STEALS' THE SHOW: Sophomore Chucky Jeffery had a career and team season-high seven steals in the win over Colgate. It's the 21st time a Buff has registered seven or more steals in a game, but the first since Damietta Velicica had seven vs. Tulane on December 6, 1997. Jeffery, who ranks second in the Big 12 at 3.1 steals per game, has had six steals in two other games this season (Regis, Evansville) and has at least three steals in eight of 14 games.
DALE RETURNS: In just five games back from missing the fall semester with academic issues, senior guard Chelsea Dale has fit nicely into the CU rotation. She is averaging 5.6 points while grabbing three rebounds over five games. Dale had a career-high with 16 points on 5-of-9 shooting in the win over Colgate. Dale's 28 points in five games back is just one less than the 29 she scored over 23 games in 2009-10. She made her season debut at USC, contributing 10 points and a career-best five rebounds off the bench in the loss to the Trojans.
SPEARS' STARTING STREAK: Senior Brittany Spears is scheduled to make her 108th career start Wednesday, leaving her just four behind Amy Mathern (1989-93) for the longest streak in team history. Mathern started the final 112 games of her distinguished career. Spears already holds CU's mark for most consecutive starts at the beginning of a career as she passed Lisa Van Goor (1980-85) when she started her 101st game against Illinois on Dec. 4. With her 108th start, she will tie Van Goor for the eighth most overall career starts.
SPEARS CLIMBING CAREER LADDERS: Brittany Spears not only achieved her 26th career double-double against Dayton, with her 22 points and 12 rebounds she became the third player in team history, joining Lisa Van Goor (1980-85) and Jackie McFarland (2004-08) to record 1,700 points and 800 rebounds in a career.
In the loss to Texas A&M Spears scored 21 points to pass former All-American Shelley Sheetz for fourth place on CU's all-time scoring list with 1,779. She is now 79 points behind recent CU Athletic Hall of Fame inductee Tera Bjorklund (2000-04) for third place. Spears also ranks second in field-goal attempts (1,522), fourth in 3-point field-goal attempts (557), fifth in rebounds (827), field-goals made (650) and blocked shots (126), sixth in 3-point field-goals made (189), seventh in minutes (3,534), eighth in steals (200), ninth in games started (107) and 13th in free-throws made (290) on CU's all-time charts.