VS ASU this year: 0-1
NET Ranking: 80
Points scored: 75.7 (111 of 353)
Points allowed: 69.0 (119 of 353)
Trying to figure out the direction of Arizona State basketball is an impossible task at this point. ASU was blown out at home by one of the worst team’s in the country, and then followed up two days later by easily besting a team that has been receiving top 25 votes.
In the win over Washington, the Sun Devils played a very aggressive style on offense where they turned the ball over a lot but also shot very efficiently. Arizona State did a really good job of getting the ball inside to their bigs, especially sophomore forward Romello White who scored 17 points on 8-of-9 shooting.
Now, ASU heads back on the road for their first rematch of the season, as they travel to Boulder for a meeting with the Buffaloes. Colorado began their conference season by getting swept by both Arizona schools, which in both games CU’s offense struggled to get going.
In their Jan. 5 matchup in Tempe, the Buffaloes shot a disappointing 33 percent from the field, and were only 5-of-26 beyond the arch, good for only a 19 percent clip from distance.
ASU’s defense is very capable of creating tough shots for opponents, but it’s unlikely to expect a good shooting CU team to have the same struggles. Especially when they’re playing on their home floor and are seeking redemption.
The key outside shooter for Colorado is junior forward Lucas Seiwert, who has done a nice job in the stretch-four role this season. Seiwert couldn’t get going offensively during the first meeting in Tempe, as he scored only three points on 1-of-9 shooting.
He will likely be looking to redeem himself by knocking down shots at the Buffaloes are thinking upset.
Colorado’s front court features another productive player in sophomore wing Tyler Bey, who’s done a tremendous job on the glass. He too was limited in the first meeting but has had a good season averaging 12 points per game as well as 8.9 rebounds per contest.
Arizona State does a tremendous job of rebounding the basketball, so they match up well against a Colorado team that employs a more team-oriented style of offense. Where they have had trouble is containing one individual player like Washington State’s Robert Franks Jr.
The Sun Devils also received good news that freshman forward Taeshon Cherry has been cleared to return to action. Cherry has missed extended time due to a concussion suffered against UCLA on Jan. 24. He played limited minutes against Arizona before re-aggrevating the injury keeping him out against the Washington schools.
It’s well-known that ASU has yet to complete a road sweep with Bobby Hurley as head coach. There is many factors that make the trip to the mountain schools daunting, but the Sun Devils should matchup well with both opponents as they seek to keep climbing the conference standings.