College Basketball Odds, Pick & Preview for Colorado vs. Washington (Thursday, January 27)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images. Pictured: Jabari Walker.
- Colorado is a road favorite tonight in Seattle against Washington.
- The Buffaloes are off to a strong start in Pac-12 play, unlike the Huskies.
- Keg breaks down the matchup and delivers his betting pick below.
Colorado vs. Washington Odds
-110o / -110u
-110o / -110u
Colorado and Washington will square off at the Alaska Airline Arena after both teams produced very different results against the Oregon Ducks.
The Buffaloes earned their first Quad 1 win of the season, as they snapped the Ducks’ six-game win streak. Colorado won outright as an eight-point underdog on the road, proving it’s a serious contender in the Pac-12 for anyone who didn’t already know. The Buffaloes now sit at 13-6 overall and 5-4 in conference play.
Washington, meanwhile, was blown out by Oregon, losing 84-56. The Huskies shot just 30.9% from the field and committed 23 turnovers in the loss.
A win over Washington would be a third road win in a row for Colorado and add to its growing resume as an elite contender out west. However, the Buffaloes have not beaten the Huskies in Seattle since 2015. They have, however, already beaten Washington once this season. When the Huskies came to Boulder, the Buffaloes won by 14.
Can Colorado replicate that performance in the Pacific Northwest?
The game against the Huskies will be the Buffs’ second road game of a three-game swing through Oregon and Washington. Their first game against Oregon was a massive win for Colorado, which helped them avoid their first three-game losing streak since the 19-20 season. Colorado may have six losses on the season, but five of those six have come against ranked opponents and all four of its conference losses.
Colorado ranks sixth in the Pac-12 by scoring 70.9 points per game and shooting 44.5% from the floor, which ranks 127th nationally and sixth in the conference. The production on offense has primarily been due to Jabari Walker, who leads the Buffs with 13.9 points and 8.5 rebounds per game. Walker also leads the Pac-12 with nine double-doubles this season.
Walker has taken an even more prominent role for Colorado in conference play as well, pushing his stats up to 15.4 points per game while hitting 54.3% from the field. He’s also posting a conference-best 9.9 rebounds per contest against Pac-12 opposition.
But like any team, the Buffaloes are not without their issues. Colorado has had trouble limiting turnovers, ranking 257th nationally, giving up a turnover on 20.1% of its offensive plays.
The Colorado defense has been even better than the offense, ranking 52nd in adjusted defense and allowing teams to post an effective field goal percentage of just 47.4%. The Buffaloes should excel against a struggling Washington offense.
The Huskies are 7-4 at home on the season, but just one of those wins has come against a team that ranks inside the top 100 per KenPom. That team being Stanford, which ranks just one spot ahead of the Huskies in the Pac-12.
Respectfully, the Washington offense has been bad — very bad. The Huskies rank 228th nationally in adjusted offensive efficiency and are a bottom-50 team in effective field goal percentage. UW also ranks as one of the 50 worst teams in 2-point shooting percentage and is just outside of that in 3-point shooting at 301st.
The good news? Washington rarely turns the ball over, committing a turnover on just 16.6% of its offensive plays.
The Huskies have been led by Terrell Brown Jr., who leads the Pac-12 averaging 20.9 points per game. Brown also leads the conference in steals per game at 2.6, and Daejon Davis isn’t far behind in steals at 2.2 per game. Just one player other than Brown is averaging double-digit points this season, and that’s Emmitt Matthews Jr. at 11.6.
Defensively, the Huskies rank eighth in the Pac-12 by giving up 68.3 points, while holding opponents to 45.0% shooting. It would be almost impossible for the Huskies defense to be worse than their offense, but by no means is it elite. They rank outside the top 200 in both 2- and 3-point defense.
The only lone bright spot for the Huskies is that they create turnovers, ranking 14th in the country in turnover percentage on defense. They’re also 104th in block percentage and 26th in steal percentage. Washington is also 122nd in defensive field goal attempt rate.
Colorado vs. Washington Betting Pick
I think the Washington defense is being given too much credit, and its offense simply cannot provide the output even if they do cause turnovers and limit Colorado.
The Buffs have been excellent on the road, with a 3-1 against the spread. I think that success continues in Seattle for the Buffaloes, who I’m backing at -2.5 and would take as high as -4.