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Roster(de)bating: Xavier v. Colorado

Xavier faces another tough road test in Boulder. Will they find a way to pass this one?

NCAA Basketball: Colorado State at Colorado Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Hey fans, remember when X was undefeated and it was fun to talk about them? Good times. Anyway, Xavier will be trying to get back to their winning ways against the Colorado Buffaloes, who are still seeking a marquee out of conference win. So far their most impressive victory has been over Texas, which doesn’t quite carry the same weight as it did when Texas was good. They were also recently able to see off Wofford, which means they don’t have Jeff Robinson.

Does Colorado have Jeff Robinson?

No, we just covered this.

Who mans to block for X?

It is no secret that the play of Xavier’s bigs has been less of a question and more of an unpleasant statement so far this year. None of the three options to get extended minutes has made a claim to being worthy of being “the guy” down low and Baylor had no trouble in keeping Xavier’s post players quiet. Colorado doesn’t have nearly the length Baylor has, with 6’9” Wesley Gordon being their tallest regular, but brings considerably more beef than the Bears did. Is it time to let Tyrique bang people around until he is disqualified? Can RaShid get any offense going? Will O’Mara be able to keep the 27th best offensive rebounding team in the nation off the glass? The battle down low figures to be a pivotal one on Wednesday night.

Can Ed get a break?

Edmond Sumner has had a stop-start beginning to the season for X, experiencing a lot of ups and downs already in the first 8 games. Part of the issue may be that he is currently spending 84% of the game on the ball every possession for X and his fatigue may be contributing to his troublesomely high turnover rate. Colorado’s defense is built around forcing bad shots and swarming shooters at the expense of turning opponents over. With solid shooting numbers so far this season, is it time to let the more turnover-prone Quentin Goodin take the reins and try to limit Ed’s odometer?

Is the 1-3-1 the answer?

So far this season, Colorado has been a pretty mediocre shooting team. 34% from three and 48% EFG% are both numbers that will not strike fear into many defenses. What has been their saving grace on offense has been the fact that, out of their multitude of misses, they get 37.7% back. These guys hit the glass with the force of actual Buffaloes and are pretty much reliant on second chances to score. With that in mind, can X force shots from outside and protect the boards out of a 1-3-1 scheme?