Colorado Buffaloes men's basketball

The Colorado Buffaloes men's basketball team represents the University of Colorado Boulder. The team competes in the Pac-12 Conference of NCAA Division I. They are currently coached by Tad Boyle.

Colorado Buffaloes men's basketball
2023–24 Colorado Buffaloes men's basketball team
UniversityUniversity of Colorado at Boulder
First season1901–02
All-time record1,294–1,197 (.519)
Head coachTad Boyle (14th season)
LocationBoulder, Colorado
ArenaCU Events Center
(Capacity: 11,064)
Student sectionC-Unit
ColorsSilver, black, and gold[1]
Home jersey
Team colours
Away jersey
Team colours
Alternate jersey
Team colours
NCAA tournament Final Four
1942, 1955
NCAA tournament Elite Eight
1940, 1942, 1946, 1955, 1962, 1963
NCAA tournament Sweet Sixteen
1954, 1955, 1962, 1963, 1969
NCAA tournament round of 32
1997, 2012, 2021
NCAA tournament appearances
1940, 1942, 1946, 1954, 1955, 1962, 1963, 1969, 1997, 2003, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2016, 2021
Conference tournament champions
Conference regular season champions
Mountain States Conference
1913, 1914, 1916, 1918, 1919, 1920, 1921, 1929, 1930, 1937, 1938, 1939, 1940, 1942

Big Seven/Eight
1954, 1955, 1962, 1963, 1969

The Buffaloes have competed in fourteen NCAA Tournaments, making it to the Final Four in 1942 and 1955. Colorado has played in nine National Invitation Tournaments, winning the tournament in 1940 and making the semi-finals in 1991 and 2011.[2] The Buffs won the Pac-12 conference tournament in 2012, their first season as a member. Colorado is scheduled to rejoin the Big 12 Conference beginning in 2024.[3]

Team history edit

The Silver & Gold become Buffaloes edit

The Colorado Men's Basketball team was initially known as the Silver and Gold, and began play on January 10, 1901, and beat State Prep School 34–10.[4] While unaffiliated their first few seasons, the school joined the Rocky Mountain Conference in 1909. From 1902 to 1935, the school racked up a 200–151 record.

In 1934, the Silver and Gold became known as the Buffaloes. CU students rented a buffalo calf to cheer the team on for the final football game that year, and the nickname stuck with the school since then.[5]

The Frosty Cox era edit

The first coaching star for CU was Forrest B. "Frosty" Cox. Cox spent 13 years on the sidelines from 1936 to 1950. In his second season with the school, the Buffaloes joined the Mountain States Conference, where they would proceed to win four MSC titles. Under Cox, the Buffs had quite a bit of success—both individually and as a team. Cox had four All-Americans during his time with the Buffs – Jack Harvey (1939 & 1940), Jim Willcoxon (1939), Bob Doll (1942), and Leason McCloud (1942). Cox lead the team to three NCAA tournament bids and two NIT bids while in Boulder.

Arguably the greatest team in CU Basketball history was the 1940 squad which not only got invited to the NCAA tournament but to the NIT tournament as well. The Buffs won the more prestigious at the time NIT Tournament, which leads some to claim that the 1940 team were National Champs.[6] In 1942, the Buffs lost in the NCAA Tournament championship game to the Stanford Cardinals, which is the school's all-time best finish in that tournament.

In 1947, the Buffs left the Mountain States Conference and joined the Big Seven Conference. When Cox concluded his CU career, he had the best win–loss percentage (62.3%) of any CU coach who coached for more than one season.[7]

"The Big Burd" rules the court edit

After Cox left CU, Horace "Bebe" Lee took over as the Buffs head coach. He led the school to two NCAA Tournament bids, including a Third Place finish in the 1955 NCAA tournament. However, the star of this era was Burdette "Burdie" Haldorson. Also known as "The Big Burd," Haldorson was arguably the best player in Colorado Men's Basketball history. An All-American whose number is retired at CU, Haldorson was named to All-Big 7 Conference team two times and is also a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame, The Colorado Sports Hall of Fame, the University of Colorado Athletic Hall of Fame, and the Pac-12 Basketball Hall of Honor. He also won two gold medals with USA Basketball (1956 & 1960).

In 1955, Haldorson led the Big 7 Conference in scoring with 23.9 points per game as he led the Buffs to the third-place finish in the 1955 NCAA Tournament.[8]

"Sox" Walseth leads The way edit

In 1956, CU named former player Russell "Sox" Walseth as their head coach. Walseth graduated from CU in 1948 as a three-time letterman in both basketball and baseball for the Buffaloes, and came back to coach after stints at High School (Bakersfield, California) and South Dakota State.[9] "Sox" led the team to three Big 8 titles (the school joined the conference in 1958) and three NCAA tournament bids. In both the 1961–62 & 1962–63 seasons, the Buffs reached the second round of the NCAA tournament before being eliminated by Cincinnati.[10]

"Sox" had two All-Americans while at CU—Ken Charlton (1963) and Cliff Meely (1971). Another key performer on the successful 1961-62 team, which beat Kansas to take the Big Eight Conference title before proceeding to the NCAA tournament, was Wilky Gilmore. Charlton and Gilmore were both named to the All Big-Eight team that year.[11]

Somewhat later in Walseth's tenure as coach, another standout at Boulder was Scott Wedman – a sharp-shooting forward from Denver's Mullen High School. Wedman made a huge mark on the CU record books as he led the team in scoring and rebounding for two seasons, free throw percentage for one season and field goal percentage all three years he played at CU. Those numbers placed him seventh in career scoring, sixth in rebounding and eighth in field goal percentage in CU history at the time he left the school.[12] He also was the highest draft pick in school history, going 2nd overall in the ABA Draft to the Memphis Sounds (he was also drafted 6th overall in the NBA draft by the KC-Omaha Kings). Wedman went on to play 12 years in the NBA.

When he retired after twenty seasons, "Sox" was the all-time winningest coach in CU history with a 261–245 record. Four years later, he came back to coach the women's team to a 77–21 record, including an incredible 43–0 home record, before retiring again. In 1996, the CU Event Center basketball court was named after him, so the Buffs all play on "Sox Walseth Court" now.[13]

Cliff Meely edit

The star of the program under "Sox" Walseth was undoubtedly Cliff Meely. Walseth often called Meely "the most complete player" he had ever coached, and Meely set sixteen school records while playing for the Buffaloes and eight Big 8 Conference records.[14]

Meely is the school's all-time leader in points and rebounds per game, and was named an All-American during the 1971 season. The list of accolades he received while in Boulder is numerous, but along with being an All-American, in 1969 he was named both Big 8 Player of the Year and Big 8 Sophomore of the Year. In fact, all three years he was at Colorado he was named to the All-Big 8 First Team. Because of his dominant play, he was not only named to the 1970s Big 8 All-Decade First Team, but in 1996 he was named to the AP's All-time Big 8 Conference Basketball first team along with Wayman Tisdale (Oklahoma), Danny Manning (Kansas), Jo Jo White (Kansas) and Rolando Blackman (Kansas State).[15]

Colorado has retired the #20 that he wore while in Boulder.

Individual talents lead the way edit

Against Wisconsin–Parkside in January 1982.

The lackluster results of Walseth's latter tenure would become the norm for Colorado over the next two decades. From 1977–78 to 1995–96, the Buffs would only have four winning seasons, and only once would even get to .500 in Big Eight play.

While the Buffs struggled record-wise in the '80s and early '90s, they did have a few individual standouts that brought the team national attention. From 1980 to 1984, the Buffs were led by Jay Humphries, an exciting guard who made his mark all over CU's record book in just those three seasons. On offense, he became the school's all-time assist leader and also finished fourth all-time in scoring. Even with that though, Humphries was best known for his defense. Humphries is the school's all-time leader in thefts and led the nation in steals in 1982–83 with 115.[16] Humphries was twice named Honorable Mention All-American (1982–83 & 1983–84) before being drafted by the Phoenix Suns with the thirteenth pick of the NBA draft. A teammate of Humphries in high school and at Colorado was post player Vince Kelley. Kelley also played with the Buffaloes from 1980 to 1984 and finished third all-time in career rebounds at CU. Kelly graduated in 1984 and played professionally in Australia and Portugal.[17]

After starting out the '80s with talent like Humphries and Kelley, the Buffs found a way to round the decade out with two more stars to lead the team. Shaun Vandiver was a transfer from Hutchinson CC who only played three years in Boulder, but when it was all said & done finished as the school's all-time leader in field goal percentage and was the school's second leading scorer & rebounder in history. For his work, he was named Honorable Mention All-American in 1989–90 and was named Big Eight tournament MVP from a losing team[18] after leading the 8th seeded Buffs to the Tournament Championship game before falling short – the first eight seed to ever make the championship game.[19]

Vandiver wasn't alone on the team though as he had guard Stevie Wise there to help lead the way. Wise played 119 games for the Buffs, the fifth most in school history.[20] He was known for being one of CU's all-time great 3 point specialists and he holds numerous CU shooting marks. He finished his time as the number three scorer in school history and is still in the top 10 for assists in school history. Wise & Vandiver led the team on their run to the 1991 NIT Final Four. It was the school's first postseason appearance since 1969, and when it was said & done, they got to cut down the nets in front of a standing room only crowd at the Events Center before heading to the NIT Final Four in NYC where they ended up third.

The next player to make his mark on the record books was Donnie Boyce. The Illinois product spent four years at CU and when he left he was the school's all-time leading scorer with 1,995 points. He was the first Buff to lead the team in scoring all four years at CU, and only the second Buff to ever do it. While Boyce was lighting it up, the team struggled. It appeared that Boyce was finally going to get to play in a postseason tournament in 1995, but he broke his leg in the opening round of the Big Eight tournament against Oklahoma. The team went on to earn an NIT bid–their first postseason bid of any sort since 1969–but he was unable to play.

The Chauncey Billups years edit

The most beloved player in school history, Chauncey Billups is usually the first person that people think of when they think Colorado basketball. The three-time winner of Colorado's Mr. Basketball award and a member of the McDonald's All-American team his senior year, the Denver native could have gone anywhere in the nation to play college ball.[21] Even though it was obvious he wouldn't be staying for the entire four years due to a pro career calling his name, he had no shortage of suitors. With all of that, he decided to stay close to home and enroll at CU.

In his first year at Colorado, he set a school record for points scored by a freshman and was named to the Big 8 All-Freshman team as well as the All-Big 8 Conference Second Team and the Kansas City Star Big 8 team—an honor that was voted on by the players themselves. Unfortunately, Chauncey's first year in Boulder was filled only with individual accolades as the team underperformed and head coach Joe Harrington was relieved of duties. His sophomore year however, Chauncey was able to get the team going. Behind new head coach Ricardo Patton, and in a new conference (the Big 12 Conference), Chauncey at one point had led the Buffs to a 14–3 record and the #18 ranking in the nation. This team would make the Buffs' first NCAA Tournament appearance in 28 years, and notched their first winning conference record in 24 years. They would upset Indiana in the first round before losing to North Carolina in the second round. For his work, Chauncey was named not only to the All-Big 12 Conference First Team, but was named an All-American as well. Chauncey declared for the NBA draft, where he was picked third overall by the Boston Celtics, and he went on to play 17 years in the NBA.

The Buffs enter The Big 12 edit

Once Chauncey left, the Buffs were faced with a rough conference slate, but still managed to have some success behind head coach Ricardo Patton. Players such as Jaquay Walls (Big 12 All-Newcomer Team) and Jamahl Mosley helped lead the team to back-to-back NIT bids, but things started to improve once David Harrison showed up on campus for the 2001–02 season. Harrison was named to the Big 12 All-Freshman team and lead the school in scoring, while also setting a school record with a field goal percentage of 63.8% – good enough for third nationally.[22] Harrison had help though in the form of Stéphane Pelle. Pelle was the first player in 11 years to average a double-double, putting up 12.8 points and 10.8 rebounds per game in the 2001–02 season. The next season, with Harrison & Pelle down low and Michel Morandais coming in to form on the wing, the Buffs won 20 games and capped it off with an NCAA Tournament bid. They made the NIT the next season after Harrison left early to go into the NBA draft.

New all-time scoring leaders edit

Richard Roby stepped on the CU campus in 2004 and became the first freshman since Chauncey Billups to lead the team in scoring and he ended up joining Donnie Boyce as the only Buffs to lead the team in scoring all four years on campus. In his sophomore season, Roby & the Buffs won twenty games and ended up in the NIT Tournament, while also being named to the All-Big 12 First Team. Unfortunately, he was faced with a freshmen laden team the next season, as there were eight first year players (a school record) on the 2006–07 squad. The next season showed improvement and the Buffs became the first team in Big 12 history to be a 12 seed and upset a number 5 seed (Baylor) in the Big 12 Tournament.[23] When he finally graduated from CU, he left the school as the all-time leading scorer with 2,001 points—a record that still stands to this day.

But it is a record that is shared, because during his senior year, he shared time on the floor with a freshman named Cory Higgins who would one day tie him as the school's all-time leading scorer. Higgins was more than just a scorer though as during his sophomore year he was one of only 13 players nationally to lead or finish second on his team in five major statistical categories—points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocked shots.[24] Higgins also found a way to rank nationally in steals, free throw percentage and scoring as well. For his junior year, Higgins got some more help with the arrival of freshman guard Alec Burks. Higgins & Burks became the first tandem to net over 500 points in the same season since the 1990–91 campaign[25] and were rewarded as Higgins was named to the All-Big 12 Third Team and Burks was named All-Big 12 Freshman of the Year.

The Tad Boyle era edit

Tad Boyle was named the 18th coach in University of Colorado men's basketball history on April 19, 2010. In his first season in Boulder, Boyle led the Buffs to a school-record 18 home wins and their highest Big 12 finish (t-5th) since 2005–06. CU ranked first in the Big 12 and fifth nationally in free throw percentage (77.8) for the 2010–11 season. Boyle's efficient attack also ranked 12th nationally in scoring (79.6 ppg) and 19th nationally in field goal percentage (47.3).

Boyle earned National Coach of the Week honors (Hoops Report, Jan. 10–16) after leading the Buffs to a 3–0 conference start, including wins over No. 9/8 Missouri and No. 21/20 Kansas State. The win over the Wildcats gave CU its first road win over a nationally ranked opponent since defeating No. 20 Texas Tech in January 1997. For the season, CU defeated four ranked teams, including a comeback of 22 points down (ranking second all-time in school history) to upset No. 5/5 Texas, 91–89.[26] Despite having a very solid season and getting to the semi-finals of the conference tournament, Boyle and the Buffs were snubbed of a bid in the NCAA tournament. CU ended up making it all the way to the NIT semi-finals but lost to Alabama.

In his second season at the helm Tad faced an uphill battle, losing 4 starters, 78% of the scoring and most notably Alec Burks to the NBA (#12 overall pick to the Utah Jazz). He was able turn all of this into his second 24 win season in a row, a Pac-12 tournament championship and a trip to the NCAA Tournament as a #11 seed where CU advanced to the round of 32 for the first time in 15 years after beating #6 seed UNLV 68–64 in Albuquerque. CU's magical run was ended by Baylor in the round of 32, but in just two seasons, Boyle became the most successful post-season coach in the history of Colorado Basketball.

The All-Time Men's Basketball Team edit

The users on had a vote in the summer of 2012 to decide who they considered to be the members of the "All-Time Men's Basketball Team" at the University of Colorado. The players named were:

Coaching edit

Current staff edit

Position Name
Head Coach: Tad Boyle
Associate head coach: Mike Rohn
Assistant Coach: Bill Grier
Director of Basketball Operations: Bill Cartun

Record by coach edit

The men's basketball team in 1906.
Data through the 2021 NCAA Tournament
Coach Years Seasons Won Lost Pct. Conference Titles NCAA¹ NIT¹
No coach 1901–06 5 18 15 .545
Frank Castleman 1907–12 6 32 22 .592
John McFadden 1913–14 2 10 9 .526
James N. Ashmore 1915–17 3 16 10 .615
Melbourne C. Evans 1918 1 9 2 .818
Enoch J. Mills 1919–24 6 30 24 .556
Howard Beresford 1925–33 9 76 52 .594
Henry Iba 1934 1 9 8 .529
Dutch Clark 1935 1 3 9 .250
Frosty Cox 1936–50 13 147 89 .623 0 3 2
Bebe Lee 1951–56 6 63 74 .459 2 2 0
Russell "Sox" Walseth 1957–76 20 261 245 .516 3 3 0
Bill Blair 1977–81 5 67 69 .493 0 0 0
Tom Apke 1982–86 5 59 81 .421 0 0 0
Tom Miller 1986–90 4 35 79 .307 0 0 0
Joe Harrington 1990–96 6 72 85 .459 0 0 2
Ricardo Patton 1996–2006 12 184 160 .535 0 2 3
Jeff Bzdelik 2007–2010 3 36 58 .383 0 0 0
Tad Boyle 2010-pres 11 233 143 (.620) 1 5 3
Totals 118 1361 1232 (.525)

¹ Invitations

Players edit

Retired numbers edit

Colorado Buffaloes retired numbers
No. Player Career Ref.
20 Cliff Meely 1968–1971 [27][28]
22 Burdette Haldorson 1952–1955 [29]

Career leaders edit

Career Scoring Leaders
Seasons Player Points
2007–11 Cory Higgins 2,001
2004–08 Richard Roby 2,001
1991–95 Donnie Boyce 1,995
1968–71 Cliff Meely 1,940
1988–91 Shaun Vandiver 1,876
2017–21 McKinley Wright IV 1,857
2011–15 Askia Booker 1,740
1987–91 Stevie Wise 1,727
2012–16 Josh Scott 1,709
1975–79 Emmett Lewis 1,680
1982–86 Randy Downs 1,566
2012–17 Xavier Johnson 1,463
2000–04 Michel Morandais 1,428
1999–03 Stephane Pelle 1,367
1984–88 Scott Wilke 1,366
Career Rebound Leaders
Seasons Player Rebounds
1999–03 Stephane Pelle 1,054
2010–13 Andre Roberson 1,045
2012–16 Josh Scott 974
1968–71 Cliff Meely 971
1988–91 Shaun Vandiver 962
2013–17 Wesley Gordon 882
1961–64 Jim Davis 863
2017–20 Tyler Bey 799
1980–84 Vince Kelley 730
1951–55 Burdette Haldorson 711
1974–78 Larry Vaculik 709
2001–04 David Harrison 707
2012–17 Xavier Johnson 705
1971–74 Scott Wedman 684
2013–18 George King 681
Career Assist Leaders
Seasons Player Assists
2017–21 McKinley Wright IV 683
1980–84 Jay Humphries 562
1982–86 Mike Reid 446
1998–01 Jose Winston 440
2003–08 Marcus Hall 423
1976–80 Toney Ellis 409
2008–12 Nate Tomlinson 405
1991–95 Donnie Boyce 405
1987–91 Stevie Wise 377
2011–15 Askia Booker 334
1967–70 Gordon Tope 334
1990–92 Billy Low 321
2007–11 Cory Higgins 320
2000–04 Michel Morandais 294
1995–97 Chauncey Billups 282
Career Steals Leaders
Seasons Player Steals
1980–84 Jay Humphries 309
1991–95 Donnie Boyce 245
2007–11 Cory Higgins 192
1998–01 Jose Winston 179
1987–91 Stevie Wise 179
2004–08 Richard Roby 176
2010–13 Andre Roberson 164
2011–15 Askia Booker 155
1988–93 Randy Robinson 143
2017–21 McKinley Wright IV 140
2003–08 Marcus Hall 140
1982–85 Mike Reid 137
2000–04 Blair Wilson 119
1990–92 Billy Low 114
1985–88 Michael Lee 114
Career Games played Leaders
Seasons Player Games
2008–12 Austin Dufault 136
2012–16 Xavier Talton 135
2011–15 Askia Booker 134
2007–11 Cory Higgins 132
2017–21 McKinley Wright IV 131
2013–17 Wesley Gordon 131
2017–21 D'Shawn Schwartz 129
2008–12 Nate Tomlinson 129
2013–18 George King 127
2012–17 Xavier Johnson 127
2012–16 Josh Scott 124
2007–11 Levi Knutson 123
1999–03 Stephane Pelle 123
1996–00 Will Smith 123
2014–18 Dominique Collier 121
Career Minutes played Leaders
Seasons Player Minutes
2007–11 Cory Higgins 4,478
2017–21 McKinley Wright IV 4,332
1980–84 Jay Humphries 3,864
2011–15 Askia Booker 3,808
2004–08 Richard Roby 3,805
2012–16 Josh Scott 3,761
1987–91 Stevie Wise 3,586
2008–12 Nate Tomlinson 3,540
1991–95 Donnie Boyce 3,528
2008–12 Austin Dufault 3,439
2013–17 Wesley Gordon 3,405
2012–17 Xavier Johnson 3,387
1980–84 Vince Kelley 3,365
1982–86 Randy Downs 3,354
2003–08 Marcus Hall 3,294
Career Blocks Leaders
Seasons Player Blocks
2001–04 David Harrison 225
2013–17 Wesley Gordon 204
2012–16 Josh Scott 162
1991–95 Ted Allen 161
2010–13 Andre Roberson 150
1991–93 Poncho Hodges 131
1968–71 Cliff Meely 123
1991-95 Donnie Boyce 114
2004–08 Marcus King-Stockton 111
2017–20 Tyler Bey 102
1988–91 Rodell Guest 98
2004–08 Richard Roby 92
1988–91 Shaun Vandiver 90
2002–06 Chris Copeland 88
1995–97 Martice Moore 85
Tyler Bey

Individual awards edit

All-Americans edit

Player Year(s) Team(s)
Jack Harvey 1939 Madison Square Garden (1st)
1940 Consensus Second TeamConverse (1st)
Bob Doll 1942 Consensus Second TeamPic (1st), Madison Square Garden (2nd)
Leason McCloud 1942 Madison Square Garden (1st)
Ken Charlton 1963 USBWA (1st)
Cliff Meely 1971 AP (3rd), USBWA (2nd), NABC (4th)
Chauncey Billups 1997 Consensus Second TeamAP (2nd), USBWA (2nd), NABC (2nd)

Conference honors edit

1970's Big 8 Conference All-Decade Team

Big 8 Conference Player of the Year

Big XII Conference First Team

  • 2000 - Jaquay Walls

Big XII Conference Freshman of the Year

Pac-12 Conference Defensive Player of the Year

Pac-12 Conference First Team

Pac-12 Conference Second Team

Pac-12 Conference Most Improved Player

  • 2019 - Tyler Bey

NBA Draft picks edit

Name Round Overall pick Year Team
Scott Wedman 1 2 1974 Memphis Sounds (ABA)
Chauncey Billups 1 3 1997 Boston Celtics
Tom Harrold 1 4 1955 Fort Wayne Pistons
Burdette Haldorson 1 5 1955 Milwaukee Hawks
Scott Wedman 1 6 1974 Kansas City-Omaha Kings
Cliff Meely 1 7 1971 San Diego Rockets
Tom Mock 1 9 1955 Fort Wayne Pistons
Wayne Tucker 1 9 1951 Tri-Cities Lakers)
Alec Burks 1 12 2011 Utah Jazz
Jay Humphries 1 13 1984 Phoenix Suns
Shaun Vandiver 1 25 1991 Golden State Warriors
Andre Roberson 1 26 2013 Minnesota Timberwolves
Pat Frink 3 27 1968 Cincinnati Royals
Derrick White 1 29 2017 San Antonio Spurs
David Harrison 1 29 2004 Indiana Pacers
Jim Davis 4 29 1964 Detroit Pistons
Ken Charlton 4 32 1963 Cincinnati Royals
Tyler Bey 2 36 2020 Dallas Mavericks
Spencer Dinwiddie 2 38 2014 Detroit Pistons
Jim Creighton 3 39 1972 Seattle SuperSonics
Donnie Boyce 2 42 1995 Atlanta Hawks
Jaquay Walls 2 56 2000 Indiana Pacers
Jabari Walker 2 57 2022 Portland Trail Blazers
George King 2 59 2018 Phoenix Suns
Alex Stivrins 4 75 1985 Seattle SuperSonics
Chuck Williams 6 77 1968 Philadelphia 76ers
Chuck Gardner 9 81 1966 Baltimore Bullets
Joe Cooper 5 96 1981 New Jersey Nets
Wilky Gilmore 12 98 1962 St. Louis Hawks
Dave Logan 9 139 1976 Kansas City Kings
JoJo Hunter 7 146 1981 Milwaukee Bucks
Lee Haven 9 146 1974 Portland Trail Blazers
Rob Gonzalez 7 147 1983 Detroit Pistons
Larry Vaculik 9 168 1978 Denver Nuggets
Jacques Tuz 8 173 1982 San Diego Clippers
Emmett Lewis 10 181 1979 Denver Nuggets
Brian Johnson 10 212 1981 Phoenix Suns
Bob Doll ... ... 1946 St. Louis Hawks)
Cliff Meely 1 ... 1971 Denver Nuggets (ABA)
Jim Creighton ... ... 1972 Dallas Mavericks

Buffs in the NBA edit

Name Seasons as a Buffalo NBA Accomplishments
Tyler Bey 2017–20 36th pick of the 2020 NBA draft by the Dallas Mavericks.
Chauncey Billups 1995–97 Five Time NBA All-Star, NBA Champion, NBA Finals MVP.
Donnie Boyce 1991–95 Played for the Atlanta Hawks & San Antonio Spurs over three seasons.
Matt Bullard 1985–87 NBA Champion who played for the Houston Rockets & Atlanta Hawks.
Alec Burks 2009–11 2011 Lottery pick of the Utah Jazz. Currently plays for the Detroit Pistons.
Chris Copeland 2002–06 Played for the New York Knicks, Indiana Pacers & Milwaukee Bucks.
Jim Creighton 1969–72 Drafted by Seattle SuperSonics. Played one season with Atlanta Hawks.
Jim Davis 1961–64 Played for the St Louis/Atlanta Hawks, Houston Rockets & Detroit Pistons.
Spencer Dinwiddie 2011–14 38th overall pick in the 2014 Draft. Currently plays for Brooklyn Nets.
Bob Doll 1939–42 Played for the St Louis Bombers of the BAA and the Boston Celtics of the NBA.
Pat Frink 1964–68 Played with the Cincinnati Royals of the ABA for one season.
Chuck Gardner 1963–66 Played with the Denver Rockets of the ABA for one season.
David Harrison 2001–04 First round draft pick who played four seasons with the Indiana Pacers.
Cory Higgins 2007–11 Played for the Charlotte Bobcats during the 2011–12 season.
Jay Humphries 1980–84 First round draft pick of the Phoenix Suns who spent 11 seasons in the NBA.
George King 2013-18 Drafted by the Phoenix Suns in the 2018 NBA draft.
Cliff Meely 1968–71 Played with the Houston Rockets & Los Angeles Lakers for five years in the NBA.
Andre Roberson 2011–13 2013 First round draft pick. Plays for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Alex Stivrins 1983–85 Played in the NBA for two years.
Scott Wedman 1971–74 Two-time NBA champion and NBA All-Star.
Derrick White 2015-17 29th pick of the 2017 NBA draft by the San Antonio Spurs.
Chuck Williams 1965–68 Played for 8 seasons in both the NBA and ABA.

Buffs in international leagues edit

Post season edit

Big 8 Conference tournament edit

The Buffs went 4–20 in the Big 8 Conference tournament in their time in the conference. Their best performance came in the 1990 season when they became the first #8 seed to make the conference championship game before falling to Oklahoma in the championship match. For their effort, Shaun Vandiver was named Tournament MVP despite being on the losing team.

Big 12 Conference tournament edit

In their fifteen seasons in the Big 12, the Buffs managed to go 9–15 in Conference tournament play. Despite not winning a conference championship, they do have two successful claims to fame during their time. The first one was in 2008 when the Buffs became the first #12 seed to upset a #5 seed as they beat Baylor in the opening round. The other one was during their last year in the conference when they beat Iowa State in the opening round and followed that up with their third win of the season over Kansas State before falling just short to Kansas in the semi-finals.

Pac-12 Conference tournament edit

Year Record Result
2012 4–0 Pac-12 Champions
2013 1–1 Lost in Quarterfinals
2014 2–1 Lost in Semifinals
2015 1–1 Lost in Quarterfinals
2016 1–1 Lost in Quarterfinals
2017 1–1 Lost in Quarterfinals
2018 1–1 Lost in Quarterfinals
2019 2–1 Lost in Semifinals
2020 0–1 Lost in First Round
2021 2–1 Lost in Championship
2022 1–1 Lost in Semifinals
2023 1–1 Lost in Quarterfinals

2012 Pac-12 Tournament champions edit

The Buffs won their first conference tournament championship in 2012, their first year in the Pac-12 conference. Led by tournament MVP Carlon Brown, the 6th-seeded Buffs won four games in four days to bring the championship back to Boulder and earn an invitation to the 2012 NCAA tournament where they would go on to beat UNLV in the second round before losing to Baylor in the third round.

Date Score TV
3/7/12 Colorado 53, Utah 41 FSN
3/8/12 Colorado 63, Oregon 62 FSN
3/9/12 Colorado 70, California 59 FSN
3/10/12 Colorado 53, Arizona 51 CBS

NCAA tournament results edit

The Buffaloes have appeared in the NCAA Tournament 14 times, with a combined record of 11–17.

Year Seed Round Opponent Result/Score
1940 Elite Eight
Regional 3rd Place
L 32–38
L 56–60 OT
1942 Elite Eight
Final Four
W 46–44
L 35–46
1946 Elite Eight
Regional 3rd Place
L 44-50
W 59–44
1954 Sweet Sixteen
Regional 3rd Place
L 64–76
L 55–78
1955 Sweet Sixteen
Elite Eight
Final Four
National 3rd Place
San Francisco
W 69–59
W 93–81
L 50–62
W 75–54
1962 Sweet Sixteen
Elite Eight
Texas Tech
W 67–60
L 46–73
1963 Sweet Sixteen
Elite Eight
Oklahoma City
W 78–72
L 60–67
1969 Sweet Sixteen
Regional 3rd Place
Colorado State
Texas A&M
L 56–64
W 97–82
1997 9 E Round of 64
Round of 32
(8) Indiana
(1) #4 North Carolina
W 80–62
L 56–73
2003 10 S Round of 64 (7) Michigan State L 64–79
2012 11 S Round of 64
Round of 32
(6) #23 UNLV
(3) #9 Baylor
W 68–64
L 63–80
2013 10 E Round of 64 (7) Illinois L 49–57
2014 8 S Round of 64 (9) Pittsburgh L 48–77
2016 8 S Round of 64 (9) Connecticut L 67–74
2021 5 E Round of 64
Round of 32
(12) Georgetown
(4) #14 Florida State
W 96–73
L 53–71

NIT edit

The Buffaloes have appeared in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) 13 times. Their combined record is 14–12. They were NIT Champions in 1940.

Year Round Opponent Result
1938 Semifinals
Championship Game
New York University
W 48–47
L 34–60
1940 Semifinals
Championship Game
W 52–37
W 51–40
1991 First Round
Second Round
3rd Place Game
Arkansas State
W 71–64
W 83–75
W 81–75
L 78–88
W 98–91
1995 First Round New Mexico L 83–98
1999 First Round
Second Round
Colorado State
W 65–61
L 78–86
2000 First Round Southern Illinois L 94–92
2004 First Round Oregon L 72–77 OT
2006 First Round Old Dominion L 61–79
2011 First Round
Second Round
Texas Southern
Kent State
W 88–74
W 89–72
W 81–74
L 61–62
2017 First Round UCF L 74–79
2019 First Round
Second Round
Norfolk State
W 78–73
W 76–60
L 55–68
2022 First Round St. Bonaventure L 68-76
2023 First Round
Second Round
Seton Hall
Utah Valley
W 65-64
L 69–81

CBI edit

The Buffaloes have appeared in the College Basketball Invitational (CBI) one time. Their record is 1–1.

Year Round Opponent Result
2015 First Round
W 87–78
L 62–75

Record vs. Pac-12 opponents edit

The Colorado Buffaloes have the following all-time series records vs. Pac-12 opponents. They lead the series vs. seven opponents.

Opponent Wins Losses Pct. Streak
Arizona 15 21 .417 Colorado 1
Arizona St. 13 9 .591 Colorado 4
California 20 16 .556 Colorado 1
Oregon 13 10 .565 Oregon 1
Oregon St. 16 10 .615 Oregon State 1
Stanford 14 9 .609 Colorado 2
UCLA 7 14 .333 Colorado 1
USC 16 6 .727 Colorado 7
Utah 15 19 .441 Utah 1
Washington 13 18 .419 Washington 1
Washington State 16 6 .727 Colorado 2
  • Note all-time series includes non-conference matchups.

Facilities and fans edit

CU Events Center edit

The CU Events Center is an 11,064-seat multi-purpose arena on the Boulder main campus of the University of Colorado. The arena opened in 1979, and is home to the Colorado Buffaloes men's and women's basketball teams and the CU volleyball team. The CEC opened in 1979 and the first game played there was the CU Men's Basketball team hosting the USSR basketball team. The largest crowd ever to witness a game was on December 5, 2012, when 11,708 people watched CU play CSU (CU won the game 70–61). The facility has also hosted its fair share of concerts as Bob Dylan, U2 and Stevie Wonder are some of the artists to have performed there.[30]

The facility was originally named the CU Events/Conference Center and cost $7.7 million to build. In September 1990, it was renamed the Coors Event Center to honor a $5 million gift from the Adolph Coors Foundation. In 2018, the name was changed to the CU Events Center.[31]

Practice facility edit

In the fall of 2011, the school opened the doors on a brand new practice facility that is located right next to the CU Event Center. This provides locker rooms and practice courts for the men's & women's basketball teams as well as the women's volleyball team. The facility is 43,000 square feet and cost $10.8 million, all from private funds. Each of the two practice courts are 11,000 square feet and are exact replicas of the CU Event Center—down to the lines and logos. The school also took extra care to make sure that the facility matches the other 200-plus buildings on campus by using sandstone and red-tiled roofs.[32]

The facility is also one of two athletic facilities to be given LEED Platinum Certification,[33] which is the highest possible by the internationally recognized system developed by the US Green Building Council. The facility is estimated to be 40% more energy efficient and 30% more water efficient than similar buildings to it.

C-Unit edit

The student section for CU Basketball is referred to as the C-Unit. A grassroots organization that was started by a few students in 2004, the C-Unit has gone on to receive tons of praise for their ability to cheer the Buffs on.[34] They started getting attention nationally when the school sent 50 members to Los Angeles for the 2012 Pac-12 Tournament, and then upon getting a bid to the NCAA Tournament, the school sent 100 of them to The Pit in Albuquerque to cheer the team on in their victory over UNLV in the second round of the tournament.[35] The C-Unit, combined with the large number of CU fans who followed the team down for the weekend, turned The Pit into "Coors Event Center South".[36]

References edit

  1. ^ University of Colorado at Boulder NIL Brand Guidelines (PDF). January 28, 2022. Retrieved July 28, 2023.
  2. ^ 2011–12 Men's Basketball Media Guide
  3. ^ Snyder, Curtis (July 27, 2023). "Colorado To Join Big 12 Conference In 2024-25". University of Colorado Athletics.
  4. ^ Season By Season Results "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on February 22, 2014. Retrieved December 31, 2011.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  5. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Daily Camera: "Historical Hoops: CU-Boulder Basketball Players Ruled the Court in 1940"
  7. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ Media Guide: Honor Roll Archived 2015-05-24 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Media Guide: Sox Walseth Archived 2015-05-24 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ University of Colorado Athletic Media Relations Office (2004). Colorado Buffaloes Basketball 2004-05. University of Colorado. p. 151.
  12. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  13. ^ Media Guide: Sox Walseth Archived 2015-05-24 at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ Media Guide: Honor Roll Archived 2015-05-24 at the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ Media Guide: Honor Roll Archived 2015-05-24 at the Wayback Machine
  16. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  17. ^ Where Are They Now? Vince Kelley
  18. ^ Media Guide: Honor Roll Archived 2015-05-24 at the Wayback Machine
  19. ^ Media Guide: Honor Roll Archived 2015-05-24 at the Wayback Machine
  20. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  21. ^ JockBio: Chauncey Billups Biography
  22. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  23. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  24. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  25. ^ Media Guide: Basketball History/Polls Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  26. ^ Tad Boyle BIO "Tad Boyle Bio - - Official Athletics Web site of the University of Colorado". Archived from the original on August 29, 2011. Retrieved March 28, 2012.
  27. ^ Cliff Meely, legendary Colorado Buffaloes basketball player, dead at 65, 29 May 2013 at The Denver Post
  28. ^ Cliff Meely bio at CU Athletics
  29. ^ Burdette Haldorson - CU Athletic Hall of Fame
  30. ^ Coors Event Center History
  31. ^ "CU Buffs nearing removal of Coors name from events center" Archived 2018-07-01 at the Wayback Machine, Boulder Daily Camera, Boulder, 18 April 2018. Retrieved on 30 June 2018.
  32. ^ 2011–12 Media Guide – History Archived 2013-12-30 at the Wayback Machine
  33. ^ Coors Event Center History
  34. ^ CU Independent: "True fans are forever: bleeding black and gold"
  35. ^ Daily Camera: "March Madness: CU BuffsFans Head to New Mexico for NCAA Tourney"
  36. ^ Colorado Daily: "Buff Fans Make the Pit Their Own"

External links edit