Colorado men's basketball coach Tad Boyle doesn't believe a team rises to the occasion.

It's all about the preparation, Boyle says. If a team prepares well, it can play well.

If that's the case, Boyle has a pretty good track record of preparing his team for big games, and the No. 20 Buffaloes (12-2) have another big game Sunday. The Buffs will host No. 10 Oregon (13-0) in a 3 p.m. game at the Coors Events Center.

"We've got guys on the team that are competitive and are tough," Boyle said. "I think we've got good toughness, I think we play hard. Oregon, they're going to test that."

Since Boyle arrived in Boulder four years ago, the Buffs are 10-11 against ranked teams, including 4-6 against top-10 teams. Even in defeat, though, the Buffs usually bring their A game against the nation's best.

"Without a doubt," junior guard Askia Booker said when asked if the Buffs will have some extra fire going into the game. "It starts a spark for me. I'm so competitive that when I see a number like (Oregon's No. 10 ranking), I want to knock them off the map and move us up a little bit. I'm going to try to prepare myself the best I can."

Booker and the Buffs spent the past few days preparing for what could be one of the most talented teams they'll face all season.

Going into Saturday, Oregon was the nation's No. 1 scoring team, at 89.2 points per game. Four Ducks average at least 11.3 points per game -- Joseph Young, Mike Moser, Jason Calliste and Damyean Dotson -- while three others average at least 7.7.

While Oregon has had to figure out how to get several key transfers, including Young, Moser and Calliste, into the fold, it has been a smooth transition. All three are veteran players that were added to a veteran nucleus that includes senior point guard Johnathan Loyd.

"They've got maturity," Boyle said. "I don't know what their average is, but it's significantly higher than ours."

CU comes in with confidence, though, considering its recent past against good teams, including a 75-72 win at home on Dec. 7 against then-No. 6 Kansas.

"It comes down to playing hard," Booker said. "You're going to make mistakes because those are good teams and they're going to force you into making mistakes that you usually don't make or you don't want to make, but if you continue to play hard, you can keep the game close.

"Sometimes it comes down to a last-second shot or the last two minutes of the games and that's when your preparation comes in. You buckle down and you pull out the victory."

Playing well on defense will help. The Buffs have been up and down on defense this year, but when they're good on that side of the court, they usually have success. They're coming off a very good defensive effort against Oregon State on Thursday, and Booker said it'll be important to repeat that against the Ducks.

"As long as we don't turn the ball over and we take care of it, and we defend and rebound, I think we should be just fine against Oregon," he said.

Whether or not there is truth in the ability to rise to the challenge, there's no question the Buffs will be ready for Sunday afternoon's game.

"Everybody is going to be jacked up and hyped up," junior Spencer Dinwiddie said. "It's going to be a very big game for us. Everybody knows when you're playing a team ranked higher than you it's a big chance to move up.

"Not only that, they're more than likely going to be a power in this conference and if we get this win, it's the only time we play them, so we've got any type of tie-breaker down the road."

Contact staff writer Brian Howell at howellb@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/BrianHowell33.

CU men's hoops preview

SUNDAY: The No. 20 Colorado Buffaloes (12-2, 1-0 Pac-12) host the No. 10 Oregon Ducks (13-0, 1-0) in a 3 p.m. game at Coors Events Center in Boulder.

BROADCAST: Radio -- KOA (850 AM), with Mark Johnson on play-by-play and Scott Wilke providing color commentary. TV -- Fox Sports 1, with Aaron Goldsmith and Bill Raftery on the call.

STORYLINES: CU comes into the game following a 64-58 win against Oregon State on Thursday in the Pac-12 opener. ... Oregon won at Utah, 70-68 in overtime, on Thursday. ... CU is seeking its second win against a top-10 opponent this season. The Buffs defeated then-No. 6 Kansas, 75-72, on Dec. 7. The last time CU had two wins against top-10 teams in the same season was in 2010-11. ... CU is 10-11 against ranked teams in the past four seasons, including 4-6 against the top 10. ... The last CU team to start 13-2 was the 1968-69 squad. ... The Buffs are 10-0 at home this season and 54-7 at home in four seasons under coach Tad Boyle. ... CU is 9-0 this year when taking the lead into halftime. ... Oregon has already tied the school record for most 100-point games in a season (four). It's the third time in 109 seasons that the Ducks have done that. ... Oregon's top three scorers -- Joseph Young, Mike Moser and Jason Calliste -- were held to a combined 16 points against Utah. That trio scores 44.1 points per game. ... Oregon is 13-0 for just the fourth time in school history. The Ducks have had two 14-0 starts -- in 1937-38 and in 1926-27. ... Oregon is 4-0 this season against teams that played in the 2013 NCAA Tournament.

KEY STAT: Oregon has scored at least 80 points in 10 of 13 games this season. CU has not allowed more than 78 in a game this season. In fact, the Buffs have held 34 consecutive opponents below 80 points, dating back to a 92-83 overtime loss at Arizona on Jan. 3, 2013.

COACHES: Tad Boyle is 81-40 in his fourth season at CU and 137-106 for his career. Dana Altman is 86-37 in his fourth season at Oregon and 619-304 for his career.

PROBABLE STARTERS: Colorado -- G Spencer Dinwiddie, 6-6, Jr. (15.3 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 3.9 apg); G Askia Booker, 6-2, Jr. (12.6 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 2.0 apg); F Wesley Gordon, 6-9, Fr. (7.1 ppg, 5.9 rpg), 1.3 bpg); F Xavier Johnson, 6-7, So. (9.6 ppg, 6.1 rpg); F Josh Scott, 6-10, So. (13.1 ppg, 9.3 rpg). Oregon -- G Damyean Dotson, 6-5, So. (11.3 ppg, 4.2 rpg); G Johnathan Loyd, 5-8, Sr. (9.2 ppg, 6.4 apg); G Joseph Young, 6-2, Jr. (19.3 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 54.3% FG); F Richard Amardi, 6-8, Sr. (7.7 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 54.7% FG); F Mike Moser, 6-8, Sr. (13.1 ppg, 7.7 rpg).

SERIES: CU leads 7-3, including 4-0 in Boulder. CU is 4-1 against the Ducks since joining the Pac-12 Conference before the 2011-12 season.

UP NEXT: CU will visit Washington State on Wednesday in Spokane, Wash.