Although Colorado couldn’t quite get past No. 2 Stanford on Thursday, the Buffaloes’ double-overtime effort paired with a dominant win over Cal was enough for them to crack ESPN’s top 16 women’s college basketball power rankings.
ESPN’s M.A. Voepel put the Buffs at the very bottom of his list at No. 16, just behind Villanova. Knocked out of this week’s rankings were Arizona, Michigan and Iowa.
Likewise, the Buffs also improved one spot to No. 20 in the AP Top 25.
Head coach JR Payne and Co. wrapped the regular season with a 22-7 overall record, including 13 wins in Pac-12 play.
The stakes only get bigger in March, though. Colorado enters the Pac-12 Tournament as a No. 3 seed and will face either No. 6 USC or No. 11 Oregon State in the second round. The Buffs are also a projected top-four seed in the NCAA Tournament.
Here’s what Voepel wrote on the Buffs:
The Buffs nearly took down Stanford last week before falling 73-62 in double overtime. But they closed the season with a 95-69 win over Cal. That, and their overall Pac-12 résumé, has earned them their first appearance this season in the Power Rankings. Colorado went 6-2 in February and is seeking its first Pac-12 tournament title. Its last conference tournament championship came in 1997, the first season of Big 12 play. Colorado moved to the Pac-12 in 2011.