Bu≠s mis­fir­ing on 3-point shots

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Pat Rooney

boul­der» The Colorado Buf­faloes still be­lieve their long-range shots will start fall­ing. They just hope it hap­pens be­fore Pac-12 men’s bas­ket­ball games be­gin in about two weeks.

As CU pre­pares for what should be a get-well game Satur­day at home against Di­vi­sion II Fort Hays (Kan.) State, the Buffs’ ail­ing 3point per­cent­age re­mains a frus­trat­ing enigma. Had the Buffs shot any­where close to the suc­cess rate they posted last sea­son, a num­ber of their early-sea­son short­com­ings, such as get­ting out­re­bounded soundly in a 79-71 loss at BYU last week­end, prob­a­bly would have been glossed over by ugly yet read­ily ac­cept­able vic­to­ries.

In­stead, the Buffs (7-3) en­ter their fi­nal three non­con­fer­ence games still seek­ing last sea­son’s league-lead­ing out­side touch that helped pro­pel them to a fourth NCAA Tour­na­ment berth in five sea­sons.

“We had 17 wide-open 3s against BYU. ‘Shoot­ing fish in a bar­rel’-type 3s, like ‘be­ing in the gym by your­self’-type 3s,” said CU coach Tad Boyle. “We had 17 of them that we missed.

“I’ve got con­fi­dence in our guys. These are the same guys that led the league in 3-point shoot­ing last year. We haven’t for­got­ten how to shoot. We just haven’t been mak­ing shots here re­cently.

“I thought our shot se­lec­tion against BYU was good for the most part. We had three bad shots, which I can live with.”

Among the more glar­ing cul­prits of the Buffs’ er­rant long-range shoot­ing has been se­nior Josh For­tune, usu­ally a de­pend­able 3point threat.

For­tune has shot 0-for-7 be­hind the arc (and 0-for-13 over­all) the past two games. A ca­reer 34.4 per­cent 3point shooter com­ing into the sea­son, For­tune’s 3point per­for­mance has dipped to 27.8 per­cent. Also, he has strug­gled to con­trib­ute in other ways. Dur­ing the shoot­ing slide of the past two games, he has played a to­tal of 49 min­utes and pro­duced only six re­bounds, two as­sists, three turnovers and no steals. He is 31-for-35 at the freethrow line this sea­son, but be­cause he has shot more than two free throws in only three of 10 games, that im­pact has been neg­li­gi­ble.

In their three losses, the Buffs’ best free-throw shooter has at­tempted a to­tal of only two free throws.

“I just need to see one go down,” said For­tune, who is av­er­ag­ing 8.5 points and 3.8 re­bounds. “I have to go back to do­ing other things to get my­self go­ing, like play­ing hard de­fense. I don’t worry about the past. I just worry about the fu­ture and what I can con­trol. I can’t con­trol the shots. Some are go­ing to go down, and when they do it’s go­ing to be good.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.