Almost two months ago, when Tyler Bey was asked about his personal expectations during the Colorado men's basketball team preseason media day, the sophomore forward joked that all he needs to do is score 20 points and grab 10 rebounds every night.
Twenty points per game isn't going to happen. But at this point, don't bet against Bey averaging 10 rebounds per game before the season is done.
The sophomore forward once again quietly went about the business of recording a double-double Saturday afternoon against Illinois-Chicago, finishing with 15 points and a career-best 15 rebounds in an 84-72 win.
"I'm just coming into the game doing whatever I've got to do to win," Bey said. "I'm just trying to be consistent every game. That's one thing me and coach (Tad Boyle) talked about before the season started."
After posting two double-doubles as a freshman last year, Bey's performance Saturday was his second in three games. Bey also finished 6-for-9 from the floor and his shooting a stellar .545 (36-for-66) on the season. It was the second time this season Bey has established a new career-high rebounding total — he recorded 14 rebounds in the season-opener against Drake — and he also increased his rebounding average to 8.5 per game.
"Fifteen rebounds. Are you kidding me? We'll take that every night," Boyle said. "He got more minutes tonight because of Evan (Battey's) foul trouble and Lucas (Siewert) had two in the first half as well. Tyler's minutes were a little heavier than normal, which he probably needed because he needs to get in better shape. But I thought Tyler was terrific."
Freshman guard Daylen Kountz played a season-low two minutes after suffering a minor ankle injury earlier this week in practice. The rookie from Denver East was limited in practice Friday, but Boyle still called his number in the final two minutes of the first half, and Kountz responded by knocking down a baseline jumper.
Boyle said Kountz is expected to be 100 percent before long, possibly as soon as Tuesday night's game at New Mexico (7 p.m., ESPN2).
Between Bey's double-double and a monster all-around game from point guard McKinley Wright, it once again was the Buffs' vaunted sophomore class that led the way to victory.
Wright scored CU's final 10 points and finished with 21 points, nine assists, six rebounds and three steals.
"We forget that McKinley is a sophomore and Tyler is a sophomore sometimes," Boyle said. "We expect so much of them and they're so important to our team. But they have to keep getting better."
Shane Gatling scored 12 points and has reached double-figures in each of the past four games. He has gone 16-for-18 at the free throw line during that span...CU had four players with double-figure points for the seventh time in eight games...In just his 40th career game, Wright passed former teammate Dom Collier for 22nd-place on CU's career assists list with 226...The Buffs shot just .308 (24-for-78) on 3-pointers during the four-game homestand that concluded Saturday...CU will play nine of its next 11 games away from home.