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Sustainable Excellence Initiative
MBB Heads to Mizzou for Big 12 Opener
Release: January 12, 2009
By: Andrew Green, Assistant SID
Redshirt-sophomore Casey Crawford is shooting 50 percent from the field.
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vs. THE tigers... Missouri has won the last four games in the series, however in the last two games by an average of 5.5 points. Mizzou took a 60-53 win in Columbia (Feb. 23) and a 66-62 win in Boulder (Jan. 26). Overall, the Tigers hold a 91-54 edge in the series and a 52-13 advantage in Columbia. CU last won in the Show Me State on Jan. 14, 2006 (74-71).


Complete Notes Located at the bottom of the page


at Missouri Tigers (13-3, 0-1 Big 12)

Wed., Jan. 14, 7 p.m. (MST.);

Arena: Mizzou Arena (15,061; Television: ESPNU

Announcers: Doug Bell, Jon Sundvold

Radio: KKZN 760*

Announcers: Mark Johnson, Charles Johnson


* - the CU women play at Oklahoma State, Jan. 14 at 6 p.m. (MST) on 760-AM.

The CU men will be on 1190-AM. At the conclusion of the WBB’s game, the men will appear on 760-AM


FT RECORD HOLDER... Cory Higgins broke the Big 12 and Colorado school record with 40-consecutive made free throws at SMU. He made all five attempts last Wednesday improving his total to 45-straight over eight games. The Big 12 record for consecutive free throws made was 39 (Joey Graham, OSU, 2004-05). The CU record was 39, Rob Gonzalez, Jan. 10-Feb. 26, 1983 (13 games).


LAST GAME RECAP... Cory Higgins recorded his second career double-double with 24 points and 10 rebounds helping CU defeat Western State, 65-52 last Wednesday, Jan. 7. Higgins also kept his CU and Big 12 Conference record intact making all five free throws for 45-straight at the charity stripe. Here are the NCAA best of game, season, and career for FTs made.


NCAA FTs Consecutive FT Made

Game: 24—Arlen Clark, Oklahoma St. vs. Colorado, March 7, 1959 (24 of 24)


Season: 73—Gary Buchanan, Villanova, 2000-01 (during 21 games, Nov. 17-Feb. 12)


Career: 85—Darnell Archey, Butler, 2001-03 (during 57 games, Feb. 15, 2001-Jan. 18, 2003)


Work in progress... Although Coach Bzdelik and his team have struggled in his second year (8-6 in non-conference play) and with the tough conference season ahead, let’s take a look at three of the school’s all-time winningest coaches in football, men’s and women’s basketball in their second season.

   Football: Bill McCartney, 13 seasons (1982-1994), 93-55-5 (.624): 4-7 in second year.

   Men’s BB: Sox Walseth, 20 seasons (1957-76), 261-245 (.516): 8-15 in second year.

   Women’s BB: Ceal Barry, 22 seasons (1983-2005), 427-242 (.638), 6-22 in second year.


30+ MINUTE MEN... Only four CU players have played 30+ minutes of each game. Cory Higgins has played 30+ minutes in all 14 games;  Nate Tomlinson 11 of 13 games (missed a game due to injury); and Austin Dufault and Dwight Thorne II have played nine of 14 games.


FALL 2008 SEMESTER... The CU men have nine student-athletes with a 2.9 grade point average or higher. The team also has five student-athletes with a 3.0 or better G.P.A. (Trent Beckley, Austin Dufault, Trey Eckloff, Levi Knutson, Andrew Zehnder).


BROADCAST... The Colorado men’s basketball team can be heard live on KKZN AM 760. Mark Johnson and Charles Johnson call the action including the pre- and postgame. Live internet audio of all CU basketball games is available through Yahoo! Sports. Colorado’s games will also be streamed live on through the BuffsTV subscription service.


RAINBOW CLASSIC RECAP... CU went 1-2 over the three days with its lone win coming on the opening day against Coppin State. CU sophomore Cory Higgins was named to the All-Tournament team. leading the Buffaloes in scoring in every game and averaging 18 points a game. He also recorded his first career double-double (21 pts., 10 rebs.) against Coppin State. CU averaged 66.3 ppg., shot .489 from the field (69-of-141) with an impressive .852 from the free throw line (46-of-54). All-Tournament Team: Cory Higgins, Colorado; Calvin Betts, Buffalo; Roderick Flemings, Hawai‘i; Mike Trimboli, Vermont; Marcus Walker, Colorado State; Andy Robinson, Buffalo (MVP).


Team Notes... Tonight is the first time in the history of the Big 12, CU will open the conference season against Missouri.  It’s also the first time since 2003-04 the Buffs will be playing a northern division opponent and first time in Big 12 play playing a north opponent on the road.


BB HOMECOMING... On Jan. 23 and 24, the men’s basketball team is sponsoring a Homecoming Weekend for former CU players. Last season, Coach Bzdelik started this tradition in the hopes of bringing back former alumni and honor those who have played for past Buffalo teams. On Friday, a reception from 6-9 p.m. will be held at the Broker Inn, and on Saturday former players will meet two hours before tip at the Events Center.


BIG 12 OPENER... For the second straight year, CU will open conference play on the road (last year at Texas A&M). The Buffaloes have lost 11-straight conference openers and have not won an opener since Jan. 4, 1997, the first year of the Big 12.


1997-2008 Big 12 Openers

Jan. 12, 2008 at Texas A&M      L, 68-81

Jan. 6, 2007   Texas                  L, 78-102

Jan. 7, 2006   at Texas                L, 64-89

Jan. 8, 2005   at Oklahoma       L, 55-85

Jan. 5, 2004   KANSAS               L, 62-77

Jan. 11, 2003 at Oklahoma       L, 54-69

Jan. 5, 2002   KANSAS               L, 85-97

Jan. 6, 2001   at Baylor               L, 56-61

Jan. 8, 2000   KANSAS               L, 69-84

Jan. 2, 1999   TEXAS                   L, 68-73

Jan. 3, 1998   OKLAHOMA        L, 68-69

Jan. 4, 1997   Nebraska         W, 79-73


FTs 5 MINUTES TO PLAY... Sophomore Cory Higgins is the team’s most experienced from the free throw line with under five minutes to play (including OT) making 43-of-54 (.796). Here are totals for this season.


2008-09                         2-5       Pct.           *0-2         Pct.

Matt Favaro                  -               -              2-2       1.000

Cory Higgins                13-15       .867          8-9          .889

Ryan Kelley                  -              -              3-4          .750

Nate Tomlinson             4-4    1.000             6-11         .667

Andrew Zehnder              -          -                 1-4          .250

Austin Dufault                 2-2    1.000         

Dwight Thorne II             2-2    1.000          3-6           .250

Levi Knutson                  2-2    1.000          -                -

Casey Crawford              1-2       .500      1-2           .500

Toby Veal                       -          -          1-2           .500

J. Jackson-Wilson      2-2    1.000          0-2          .000

Total                         25-28       .893          25-42    .595

 (*-includes overtime)


BUFF BITS... CU has made a 3-pointer in 209-straight games dating back to the 2001-02 season • Eighth straight game with the same starting lineup (Tomlinson, Higgins, Dufault, Thorne II, Jackson-Wilson) • Dufault, Higgins, Thorne II have started all 14 games • For the second straight game (Western State, SMU) failed to have a blocked shot (2000-01 was the last time) •


HAWAII BOUND...AGAIN... The Buffaloes will be making another trip to the Hawaiian Islands playing in the 2009-10 Maui Invitational. The dates are Nov. 23-25 (Mon.-Wed.) of Thanksgiving week. It will be CU’s first-ever appearance in Maui hosted by Division II college Chaminade, and sponsored by EA Sports. The Buffaloes will be one of eight schools participating in the 26th edition of the tournament. Joining CU next year will be Arizona, Cincinnati, Gonzaga, Maryland, Vanderbilt, and Wisconsin.


FG%... During non-conference play, the Buffs shot above 50 percent from the floor on eight out of 14 games, going 6-2 in those eight games.  That is the most .500 shooting games since the 2000-01 season when the Buffs recorded eight games of .500 or better shooting. The last time CU recorded more than eight games of shooting .500 or better from the floor in non-conference play was the 1985-86 season when they went 8-2 in 10 games.  Ironically, the Buffs were also 8-6 after non-conference play in the 1985-86 season, Tom Miller’s first as Colorado’s head coach, unfortunately the Buffs finished the season on a 17-game losing streak, going 0-15 in conference play (0-1 in the Big 8 Tournament).


CU SINCE 1996-97...  CU saw a dramatic decrease in turnovers per game (13.4) and improvement at the free throw line (.684) under first-year head coach Jeff Bzdelik. It was also a school-low in 28 years.


Years           PPG    FG %                 3-Pt.%   FT%   To    W’s

2008-09    68.0   .487   .346   .727    13.4     8

2007-08    62.4   .451   .343   .684   13.4   12

2006-07    69.1   .417   .313   .655    17.5     7

2005-06    76.8   .434   .342   .646    14.0   20

2004-05    71.6   .435   .353   .629    14.4   14 

2003-04    74.2   .464   .372   .621    14.6   18

2002-03    75.2   .443   .326   .669    14.0   20

2001-02    79.7   .453   .357   .677    17.0   15

2000-01    80.6   .460   .359   .715    16.5   15

1999-00    75.2   .426   .339   .686    14.3   18

1998-99    73.1   .414   .344   .702    14.7   18

1997-98    71.4   .404   .346   .688    14.3   13

1996-97    73.1   .420   .362   .681    13.9   22


YOUTH movement... A combination of 10 underclassmen (five freshmen and five sophomores) highlight the roster matching one of the youngest CU teams in history.  Back in 2006-07, CU had 10 underclassmen (eight freshmen), in addition to the 1992-93 season (four freshmen, six sophomores).



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