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Husky Men's Basketball

The latest news and analysis on Husky men's hoops.

February 9, 2014 at 11:15 AM

Guess the UW Score contest: Colorado

We have another new multiple winner in the Guess the UW Score contest. This is becoming a trend. Congrats to Htop who predicted Washington would fall 76-71 at Utah. The Huskies lost 78-69.

Nice job. Please contact me via email (pallen@seattletimes.com) or Twitter to claim your prize (hot dog and a soft drink at a UW home game).

It’s the second win for Htop who moves into a five-way tie with andorsjorstad, nwpdxdawg, irwin m. fletcher and progressive dawg at the top of the GTUWS season leaderboard. With at least eight games remaining, it looks like we could have a fantastic finish.

Also be sure to check out Pick & Roll, the Seattle Times prediction contest where you pick the outcomes of Pac-12 men’s basketball games. If your intent is winning the grand prize 16GB iPad mini, then it’s too late to enter and play. But if you like picking games and keeping track of your scores, then sign up and play.

Alright, let’s move on.

Just two games on tap and still plenty of time to get your picks in. And finally, here’s a reminder to join us a live chat starting at 4:30 p.m. to preview today’s game against Colorado at Coors Events Center. Thanks and good luck.

TODAY’S PAC-12 SCHEDULE:

Oregon State (13-9, 5-5) at No. 2 Arizona (22-1, 9-1), 4 p.m. PT ……… Pac-12 Networks
Washington (13-10, 5-5) at Colorado (17-6, 6-4) 5 p.m. …………………. ESPNU

Pick: Oregon State
Pac-12 tally: 44-18 (.709)
Season tally: 141-41 (.774)

WASHINGTON-COLORADO PREVIEW:

Colorado is an 8-point favorite, which make sense considering the Buffaloes are playing at home where they’re 14-1. They’ve won their last two games while Washington has lost two in a row. The Huskies are 1-5 in Pac-12 road games.

The most compelling figure in today’s game is C.J. Wilcox who has been remarkable in three games against the Buffaloes scoring 31, 25 and 19 points.

However, Colorado junior guard Askia Booker and Washington guard Andrew Andrews are considered the so-called X-factors.

Booker has struggled against Washington. He was scoreless on 0-for-9 shooting in Washington’s 71-54 win on Jan. 12 at Alaska Airlines Arena. In last year’s 64-54 UW win, he had just nine points on 3-for-14 shooting before fouling out in 34 minutes. That game was also at Alaska Airlines Arena, which suggest Booker doesn’t like playing there.

In his last outing, Andrews was 1 for 12 from the field and 0 for 7 on three-pointers. When he fails to reach his 12.1 scoring average, the Huskies are 2-4 in Pac-12 games.

Still, Wilcox tried to take some pressure off of Andrews.

“It doesn’t necessarily need to be him every game to be the X-factor or somebody else,” Wilcox said. “Perris (Blackwell) brings a lot of focus to the defensive side. … We just need that extra person. Andrew has been in a shooting slump, but the last game he also had six assists. As long as he does something to contribute. But overall it’s the defensive side that’s killing us right now.”

When asked what is Washington’s identity, coach Lorenzo Romar said: “It should be on the defensive end. There was a stretch there when we were 3-1 (in the Pac-12) when we were in total belief that defense was going to win the game. We got away from that a little bit. Right now, we’re kind of in limbo.”

Washington allowed Utah to shoot 68 percent from the field in the second half during a 78-69 loss.

Colorado is a young team – Booker is the only upperclassmen in the nine-man rotation – that’s still coming to grips with the loss of star guard Spencer Dinwiddie. The Buffaloes are flawed team that’s prone to get rattled and make mistakes. They’ve committed 140 turnovers in Pac-12 games, which is first in the conference. But they’re also 14-1 at Coors Events Center and young players perform much better at home than on the road.

Meanwhile, the last time Washington played well on the road five players scored in double figures during a 76-65 win at Arizona State on Jan. 2.

Since then, the Huskies fared well during a loss at Arizona and they were blown out in pair of losses in the Bay Area. They’ve also lost the last two road games due to second-half troubles on the offensive and defensive ends.

Romar discarded the four-guard lineup, but Washington looks as if it’s starting to wear down after 23 games. It’s difficult to imagine things turning around after a long five-day road trip in a crazy environment like Coors Events Center.

Plus there’s the altitude thing. Elevation at Boulder, Colo. is 5,430 feet.

The pick: Colorado 76-67

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