BOULDER – Namon Wright scored 25 points and McKinley Wright IV added 17, helping Colorado pull away in the second half to beat Drake 100-71 on Tuesday night.
The 25 points are Namon Wright’s best at Colorado, his overall career high is 28 at Missouri. Tyler Bey had nine points and 14 rebounds as the Buffaloes (1-0) moved to 9-0 in home openers under coach Tad Boyle. McKinley Wright picked up where he left off in the assist department with six. He broke Chauncey Billups’ freshman record for assists a season ago with 175.
Colorado shrugged off a sluggish start to lead by 11 at halftime. The team used a quick spurt to turn the game into a rout.
Nick Norton led Drake (1-1) with 18 points, including four of the team’s 11 3-pointers. D.J. Wilkins chipped in 16.
The Buffaloes showed some early rust, but relied on their stingy defense until the offense found some rhythm. They out-rebounded Drake by a 44-29 margin and kept the turnovers to a minimum — until garbage time.
Redshirt freshman Evan Battey made his Colorado debut nearly 11 months after suffering a stroke. He steadily regained feeling on his right side while his speech is constantly improving. Battey finished with eight points in 20 minutes. He took a hard fall on a layup late in the game, but quickly jumped up and knocked down both free throws.
It was a Drake-themed night with the school from Iowa in town, filled with plenty of music from the rapper/song writer. There was a Drake trivia contest and a name-that-tune challenge. Even the Buffaloes’ mascot got into the act by dressing in Drake-style clothing.
CU will now host Nebraska-Omaha on Friday.
BIG PICTUREDrake: The Bulldogs kept up with Colorado when the 3-pointers were falling. They were 7 of 18 in the first half from long range, and 4 of 19 in the second.
Colorado: The Buffaloes improved to 30-9 over the past three seasons in nonconference regular season games.
THIS & THATIn July, the Buffaloes renamed their arena CU Events Center. It had been known as Coors Events Center since 1990-91. The building opened in 1979 as the CU Events/Conference Center. ... The Buffaloes were without sophomore guard D’Shawn Schwartz, who sat out a game for an NCAA infraction. Schwartz played in a non-certified summer league game outside of the allowable dates of competition. He saw action in 18 games last season. ... Colorado newcomer Shane Gatling had 12 points.