The Illinois Fighting Illini will play the Colorado Buffaloes at Assembly Hall this weekend. The Illini are coming off of their best scoring game since 2010 as they defeated Wake Forest 95-82. Although, the Buffaloes enter the game with an undefeated 5-0 record.
According to fightingillini.com, head coach Matt Bollant “is 2-0 against the Pac-12 in his career with both meetings coming as the head coach of Green Bay.”
Colorado is a member of the Pac-12 conference. Last season, they finished tenth in the conference with a 6-12 conference record. Their overall record was 21-14.
This season, the Buffaloes are led on offense by senior guard Chucky Jeffery and freshman forward Arielle Roberson. Both Jeffery and Roberson are averaging double-digit points this season.
Roberson leads the team with 17.2 points per game while Jeffery is second on the team with 13.0 points per game. Jeffery is also very good defensively as she leads the Buffs with twelve steals in just five games.
Colorado has three players averaging at least six rebounds per game this season.
Jeffery and Roberson are the top two rebounders with 6.8 and 6.4 rebounds per game respectively. However, both are joined by sophomore forward Jen Reese. Reese is averaging 6.2 rebounds per game. Reese gives Colorado rebounding ability off the bench.
In their win over Wyoming, Roberson led the Buffaloes with 21 points and ten rebounds. He also took a total of 18 shots in the game.
The Illini last met the Buffaloes on December 4th, 2010. Illinois won the game, but it was not easy. They led Colorado by eleven points with 8:15 left in the game. However, Colorado went on a 13-0 run to grab a two-point lead with 3:24 left. Although Illinois pulled out the 63-59 victory.
Even though Illinois has a very good offense, this game might be a close game in the end. If the Illini want to win, they will need a big game out of Karisma Penn. She scored an amazing 30 points in the game against Wake Forest. Penn is also ranked 14th in blocked shots per game (3.2). She will need to lead her team’s attack in order to win this game.
Make sure to follow me on Twitter @RickyWidmer.
Check out my other writings on the Oregon Ducks blog, Autzen Zoo.