After a dismal football season here at the University of Colorado, we were looking for absolutely anything to lift our athletic spirits. The answer may be found in an unlikely group of scrappy, passionate young basketball players. CU’s men’s basketball team has come out and played relatively well during the first 17 games, going 10-7 with a signature win over then #24 Baylor and a close contest with #12 Kansas State. The problem with this promising young team is that 9 out of their 10 wins (including the toppling of ranked Baylor) all came within the friendly confines of the Coors Event Center in Boulder. With the talent of players like team-leader Cory Higgins (who is leading the team with 18.9 points per game) and diaper-dandy Alec Burks these Buffs have the chance at really making some noise in the Big XII down the stretch, but they must remedy their anemic play on the road. Down the stretch they will have to go to places like Allen Fieldhouse to take on a prolific Kansas team and Reed Arena to play a Texas A&M squad that put quite a scare into #1 Texas on Saturday in Austin. Their road struggles are undoubtedly justified with a roster that contains only 2 seniors, but with a team that has the talent and potential of this Colorado squad there is no room for excuses. Although 3 of the their top 4 scorers are upperclassmen, the rebounding and assist categories are dominated by frosh such as Burks, Austin Dufault, and Nate Tomlinson. In order for the Buffs to continue to be a factor in the Big XII they need to start seeing complete-game output from their upperclassmen, especially on the road. It’s those times when they’re down 4 points with 5:00 minutes to go and the opposing crowd is going absolutely bananas that guys like 6′ 5” Junior Cory Higgins or 6′ 7” Junior Marcus Relphorde need to step up and make a defensive stop or go all out for a long rebound and alleviate some of the pressure being naturally applied on the younger guys. In the end, Coach Bzdelik must figure out a way of getting his team to show up and play with the same intensity on the road as they do at home; and if they cannot right the ship they have no hope of competing in the Big XII let alone making the NCAA tournament in March.