Schedule strength won't haunt the Buffs on Selection Sunday in March.

Colorado finally enjoyed a festive cupcake on Friday night with a 98-51 victory over Northern Arizona at the Coors Events Center.

But the computers still love the Buffs. On Saturday, CU's strength of schedule was ranked No. 7 and its RPI was No. 4 at realtimerpi.com.

Tad Boyle challenged his talented young team by scheduling half of CU's 12 non-conference games outside of Boulder.

"I knew it was tough before we started. Scheduling is not an exact science and sometimes you have to get lucky," Boyle said. "I really believed at the start of the season that I over-scheduled. Now I'm glad I did because we have been successful for the most part."

The three teams the Buffs (9-2) defeated en route to the Charleston Classic championship -- Dayton, Baylor and Murray State -- are a combined 26-5 not counting the losses to CU.

Boyle's team has only lost on the road at Wyoming and No. 9 Kansas. The Cowboys are 12-0, and the Jayhawks improved to 10-1 on Saturday with a 74-66 win at No. 7 Ohio State.

CU picked up a road win at Fresno State on Dec. 12 and was able to finally empty the bench against Northern Arizona before a holiday break.

Xavier Johnson scored 17 points on 6-for-7 shooting to lead the reserves. Jeremy Adams added eight points in 16 minutes.

C-Unit favorites Ben Mills (two points, career-high five rebounds) and Beau Gamble (three points, one assist) even got into the act during the lopsided win over the Lumberjacks.

"We're each others' biggest supporters," said starting point guard Spencer Dinwiddie, who was cheering on backups and members of the scout team for the bulk of the second half. "Most of the team, you see them supporting us, and it's just a great opportunity when we get to support them."

The Buffs will try to do some more fine tuning against Hartford on Dec. 29 at the Coors Events Center before opening up Pac-12 play at No. 4 Arizona on Jan. 3.

Two years ago, CU lost November games at Georgia, San Francisco and Harvard before bullying weak opponents like The Citadel, Longwood, Maryland Eastern Shore and Western New Mexico in December.

The non-conference schedule came back to bite Cory Higgins, Alec Burks, Levi Knutson and Marcus Relphorde when they were snubbed by the NCAA Tournament selection committee and finished their collegiate careers in the NIT.

Last year, CU started the season 5-4 before getting some momentum with wins over Cal State Bakersfield, Texas Southern and New Orleans before opening up Pac-12 play with home wins over Utah, Washington and Washington State.

In the end, Boyle's team had to win the Pac-12 Tournament to get into the Big Dance. That shouldn't be the case this March if the Buffs finish in the upper half of the Pac-12 standings.

"I think we're excited and everybody is anxious to get Pac-12 play started," Dinwiddie said. "That's a big reason why a lot of us are here because of the move to the Pac-12."

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