Much like the Colorado Buffaloes' football team, one of the pillars the CU men's basketball squad is expected to lean heavily upon this season is the group's experience.
Yet with just three days remaining before the Buffs tip off the 2016-17 campaign at home against Sacramento State, head coach Tad Boyle still wants to see some of that leadership and experience rise to challenge. After taking Monday off on the heels of Saturday's closed scrimmage against Oklahoma State, the Buffs reconvened for the first of three workouts ahead of Friday's opener (7 p.m., Pac-12 Mountain).
According to Boyle, there are plenty of shortcomings that still require patching before Sacramento State gets into town.
"We don't have anything we can hang our hat on in terms of, 'We are really good at this.' There's just no facet of the game we are executing at a high level," Boyle said. "Again, we're not bad. We're just not consistent enough. I'd like to hang our hat on defense right now, or rebounding right now.
"Even if it was offensive execution, maybe outscore somebody and beat them 98-96. We might be able to do that if we're shooting the ball well. We have to get better in every facet. We have to just tighten the screws. It's not big things, it's the little things. It's the attention to detail that right now we have to get better at."
With four fifth-year seniors — Wesley Gordon, Xavier Johnson, Josh Fortune, and Derrick White — working alongside a fourth-year junior in top returning scorer George King, Boyle understands the potential ceiling is perhaps higher for this team than any of his previous six at CU. Yet at this early juncture it is clear Boyle doesn't believe his team has produced during the preseason in accordance with its lofty expectations.
"I think this team has a high ceiling and we can be as good as we want to be," Boyle said. "I just would think with four fifth-year seniors and fourth-year junior, I would think at this point in the season we'd be further along than we are. And we're not. I'm putting a lot of heat and expectation and responsibility on those five guys."