Colorado vs Tennessee: 2022-23 college basketball game preview, TV schedule

Colorado travels to Knoxville to take on the Vols as the teams meet for the third consecutive year with Tennessee winning the last two.

TV schedule: Sunday, November 13th, 2:00 pm ET. ESPN

Arena: Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee

Colorado and Tennessee will meet for the third consecutive year. The Buffs have lost both of these games by double digits and have scored an average of 50.5 points in those two games. This time around might not be much easier as this Tennessee could be the best of the three that Colorado has played. With that being said, there is no question that Tad Boyle will need a well-prepared offensive game plan to crack this Vols‘ defense.

What matchups could Colorado expose?

Tennessee does not have many weak spots in their defense and Rick Barnes’ style allows their guards to really pressure the ball and force turnovers. Based on Defensive Bayesian Performance Rating, Tennessee’s two worst returning defenders were Olivier Nkamhoua and Uros Plavsic. Colorado has the option to play with a lot of size, so expect lots of paint touches for Tristan Da Silva and Lawson Lovering. If Da Silva can really get going down low, Tennessee could be forced to double the post and give up more open looks to a Colorado team that shot 46% from three in the opener.

What does this matchup look like for Tennessee?

The Vols feast by playing aggressive on both offense and defense. Last year, their guards were often the key to their execution on both offense and defense, and this year it might be no different. It certainly might help Tennessee that Colorado’s guards haven’t faced a defense this tough or at least very often.

K.J. Simpson will be doing a lot of the ball-handling duties and he is expected to be in a much bigger role this year as a sophomore. J’Vonne Hadley also had an impressive opening night, but he is a JUCO transfer that will likely be matched up against Santiago Vescovi and Josiah Jordan-James. Both Vescovi and Jordan-James are extremely good defenders and might be Hadley’s toughest matchup of the entire season.

What can this game tell us about each team?

Tennessee has obviously dominated this game the last couple of years. For them, if they can go out and beat up on a worse Colorado team, they can prove to everyone that they’re once again a force to be reckoned with in the SEC. Colorado on the other hand just lost a brutal game to Grambling State. No team is as bad as their worst game, but Colorado needs to prove that the Grambling State game was indeed their worst game. Being competitive would be a pretty big success for the Buffaloes. Winning outright is probably a little too much to ask.

Tennessee’s guards and their style of play could really bother Colorado. It has bothered them in the past and Colorado is starting younger guards than they usually do. This doesn’t seem like a recipe for success for the Buffs.

Prediction: Tennessee 70, Colorado 56