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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Opposing View: Colorado reaps benefits of Arizona’s lack of killer instinct

Simon Asher
Colorado Men’s Basketball Head Coach Tad Boyle shows his frustration after an easy layup by Arizona in the first half.

BOULDER, COLO.– From the Colorado perspective, the game against No.14 Arizona couldn’t have started better. Out to a 16-point halftime lead, the ‘Buffs appeared to be in control until Arizona made a run to pull it within 3.

Call it altitude sickness, which is announced on several occasions inside the Coors Event Center, or just lack of enthusiasm for the game of basketball, whatever the case was, the Wildcats didn’t show up during one of the tougher road trips in the Pac-12 Conference. 

Coming off a victory over No. 4 Arizona State on Thursday, the Buffaloes had a lot of confidence. They played like it.

“If we play the way we are capable of playing, we can play with anybody in this league,” Colorado head coach Todd Boyle said. “We still have a lot to prove on the road, that’s the next challenge for this team. We get an opportunity to do that in L.A. against USC on Wednesday night.”

Arizona couldn’t do anything right against Colorado in the first half. The Buffaloes shot 64.3 percent from the field and 4-for-7 from three. The Wildcats were in scramble mode every possession, harkening back to their trip to the Bahamas defensively while the Buffaloes channeled their inner 2017 Oregon, by making nearly everything they threw up.

Colorado fans show their excitement and celebrate with the team after upsetting no. 14 ranked Arizona.
Colorado fans show their excitement and celebrate with the team after upsetting no. 14 ranked Arizona.

“The first half was very important for our young men’s psyche,” Boyle said. “…the psyche when they (Colorado) see the ball going in and see us having success, it’s great and we need to understand what got us that.”

Simply put, Arizona lacks a killer instinct. Loaded with tremendous ability, these Wildcats have yet to find that grit that grinds the gears each outing. It was evident multiple occasions this season and will continue to be as Arizona moves forward if the leadership on the team doesn’t turn it around. In other words, the beatings will continue until morale improves, or so it feels like it if you listen to Arizona head coach Sean Miller.

“We don’t overwhelm you, one through 11, we have to play hard and play with confidence and play together like a lot of great teams in this country,” Miller said. “…So we’ll see. We’ll either fix it or keep getting our asses kicked.”

From CU’s view, the mountains couldn’t be more colorful after sweeping two ranked teams for the first time since 2011. Thus another court storm and another game where Arizona had the better team on paper but not the scoreboard.

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