2010-11 Record: 24-14
Big 12 Conference Record (Standing): 8-8 (tied for 5th)
Joe: 6th in the Big 12
Evan: 6th in the Big 12
Matt: 5th in the Big 12
Season MVP: Alec Burks (Sophomore)
Without Burks, CU is a sub-.500 team and is contending for a spot in the CBI tournament, with Burks, they are the last team left out of NCAA Tournament. This is not to say that Cory Higgins, Levi Knutson or Andre Roberson weren't valuable to the Buffs, but without Burks, CU is an after thought. Burks finished the season as the Big 12's leading scorer at 20.1 points per game. He also led the Buffs in assists with 2.9 apg and was second on the team in rebounding at 6.4 rpg. Burks was CU basketball in 2010-11.
The Buffs had momentum going into the season. Despite finishing the previous season 15-16 overall and 6-10 in conference, the Buffs were on an upswing form a 1-15 conference tick in 2008-09. Many of us thought the Buffs would contend for and NCAA birth, and come out as the most improved team in the country, and frankly, we were right. Despite not making the Big Dance, CU's jump from 6-10 to 8-8 in conference was almost more difficult than their five game improvement the previous year. And not only did they win eight conference games, they beat perennial conference powerhouses Mizzou, K-State (three times) and Texas. Had it not been for early season blips on the radar (read: losses to Harvard and San Francisco) or a mid-conference four game losing streak, this was - and should have been - an NCAA Tournament team.
As it was, CU made the most of their exclusion and advanced to the NIT Final Four, where they were a rimmed out shot away from making the championship game.
Coach Tad Boyle must have thought he was living the dream. Not only could he come in and coach his home-state program and set up his family in Boulder, CO, but Jeff Bzdelik left the cupboards completely full. With a future lottery pick in Alec Burks and the future CU Buff all-time leading scorer Cory Higgins, Boyle had himself a team from day one. A team that had proven it could rise to a challenge and compete with anyone in the country. The real test for Byle and CU will come this year, though. With Marcus Relphorde, Knutson and Higgins graduating, and the potential loss of the sophomore Burks to the NBA, Boyle's 2011-12 team won't have the star power that this year's team has. Throw in the move to a new conference, so different travel arrangements and facing new teams, and CU will certainly have their work cut out for them.
I've always said that if you are a borderline program and have an outstanding year, you need to capitalize on the success by bringing in recruits that otherwise would have turned their back to your program. CU hasn't filled the big shoes with those types of recruits, so, if Burks leaves as I expect, I foresee a big step back for the Buffs.
See our schedule for Season Recaps after the Jump.
Tuesday, April 5 Baylor Season Recap
Wednesday, April 6 Colorado Season Recap
Thursday, April 7 Iowa State Season Recap
Friday, April 8 Kansas Season Recap
Monday, April 11 K-State Season Recap
Tuesday, April 12 Mizzou Season Recap
Wednesday, April 13 Nebraska Season Recap
Thursday, April 14 Oklahoma Season Recap
Friday, April 15 Oklahoma State Season Recap
Monday, April 18 Texas Tech Season Recap
Tuesday, April 19 Texas A&M Season Recap
Wednesday, April 20 Texas Season Recap