NCAA Basketball Scores 2012: Colorado's Defense Will Lift Buffaloes to Sweet 16

Justin WeltonAnalyst IIMarch 17, 2012

ALBUQUERQUE, NM - MARCH 15:  Carlon Brown #30 of the Colorado Buffaloes celebrates with teammate Austin Dufault #33 after a play late in the game against the UNLV Rebels during the second round of the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at The Pit on March 15, 2012 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Colorado's defense has carried them to five-straight victories, a Pac-12 Tournament championship and a Second Round victory over UNLV in the NCAA Tournament.

And they aren't done yet.

Colorado will stifle the Baylor Bears defensively in the Third Round to advance to the Sweet 16.

The Buffaloes held teams to 40 percent shooting and 62.5 points per game this season. In the past five game, all being wins, Colorado held teams to an average of 55.4 points per game.

ALBUQUERQUE, NM - MARCH 15: Nate Tomlinson #1 and Carlon Brown #30 of the Colorado Buffaloes celebrate after defeating the UNLV Rebels during the second round of the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament at The Pit on March 15, 2012 in Albuquerque, New Me
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

Here are their defensive points allowed: 41, 62, 59, 51 and 64—this team gets at you defensively. They disrupt you on the ball, knock you off your cuts and get into the passing lanes.

Baylor is going to have issues scoring the ball tonight despite having the more athletically gifted athletes and a great scoring team. The Bears shoot 47 percent from the floor as a team, but will struggle if Colorado shows up to play because of their constant activity. 

Perry Jones has been up-and-down throughout his career. He can go off for 20 or more points or score in single digits.

You never know what you're going to get.

KANSAS CITY, MO - MARCH 10:  Head coach Scott Drew talks to Perry Jones III #1, Quincy Acy #4 and A.J. Walton #22 of the Baylor Bears in the second half of their game against the Missouri Tigers during the championship game of the 2012 Big 12 Men's Basket
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

If Colorado can get to him early, taking him out of the game, the Buffaloes have a real good opportunity to slow down this high-powered offense.

Colorado has what it takes to rattle Baylor's offense on Saturday night. They've proved to have a wonderful defense throughout the course of the season and it has only been stronger in the latter stages. 

Defensively is where Colorado will win the game on Saturday but several players are going to need to play big on the offensive end. 

Austin Dufault, Askia Booker, Andre Roberson and Carlon Brown need to continue to put the ball in the basket. The freshman, Spencer Dinwiddie, has been a double-digit scorer this year. He can do multiple things on the basketball court to help his team. 

No matter how great the Buffaloes offense is tonight, it will all start on the defensive end. They will get out in transition by rebounding and forcing turnovers. They don't score many points per game (67.6) so scoring on the counter attack will be a factor against the Bears. 

Without it's defense, Colorado isn't where they are now. It starts there.

I think they do enough to get it done on Saturday.

 

Prediction: Colorado 64, Baylor 63