Colorado’s Defense Looks Very Exciting in Win Over UC Irvine

Tully Corcoran

Colorado’s defense dismantled a pretty decent UC Irvine team Monday night in Boulder. The Anteaters looked panicky all night, the result of a physical, mature Colorado team turning up on defense and forcing 20 turnovers. 

That was not a surprise, exactly, but it was exciting in that Irvine was hanging with Colorado most of the first half until the No. 24 Buffaloes just ... shut off Irvine’s water.

As if by force of will, Colorado went on a 14-2 run that was mostly because Colorado’s guards melted Irvine’s into puddles of goo. 

This is how Colorado (3-0) has played all year so far. At some point, its defense decides to choke you out, and that’s that. It happened to Arizona State just the other day. 

CU’s defense nicely complements its Tyler Bey-oriented offense. The Buffaloes aren’t  a real high-flying or hot-shooting team, but they can be highly frustrating to play against when they’re just feeding the post and stoning you on defense all night.

Making a comeback against CU is like running in sand. 

On offense, things are still a little unsettled. Colorado is shooting it better than last year, but that situation still seems iffy.

Monday night was encouraging on that front. CU made six 3-pointers in the first half, which helped make up for a 13-for-30 first half from the field. 

It seems Colorado’s offense is going to be solid, but the Buffaloes are going to make their living on disruptive perimeter defense and transition baskets. 

The good news for CU is, that’s a very reliable type of team. And it’s the kind of team that does well on the road. 

Colorado’s flaws haven’t cost it yet, so everything looks rosy now. This team could be prone to offensive droughts against good competition, but three games in Colorado looks like a contender in the PAC-12.