Colorado led by as many as seven in the first half, but Kansas knotted the game at 30-30 with two free throws just before the break.
Then, as they had in losses to Texas, Iowa State and Missouri in recent weeks, CU ran out of gas. Though they had open looks early in the second half, the ball wasn't falling, and Kansas went on an 8-0 run. The Jayhawks, who improved to 21-1 on the season, held off any CU threats after that.
"We did a lot of good things," head coach Jeff Bzdelik noted on his postgame radio interview. "At the start of the second half we got the ball to the rim three times, we just came up empty. We started off the half 0 for six."
Head coach Jeff Bzdelik made a bold move in benching sophomore Xavier Silas. The 6-5 guard had started each game this season, and 17 as a true freshman last year.
Dwight Thorne drew his first start of the season in Silas' place. More eye-opening was Bzdelik's decision to sub walk-on freshman Javon Coney instead of Silas. Coney had played 15 minutes all year, and saw two minutes on Saturday. Little used freshman center Caleb Patterson also logged some early minutes when Jermyl Jackson-Wilson quickly got into foul trouble in the first half.
Bzdelik said after the game the reason for the benching was "within the team, a coach's decision, and now we move on."
Despite the loss — which came in front of an announced crowd of 10,347, many of whom were KU fans — Bzdelik was more positive about his team's play than he has been after the two most recent losses.
"I'm really proud of my players," he said. "It's a loss; it's tough to swallow, but …I saw a lot of improvement out there today."
Colorado dropped to 9-12 overall and 1-5 in league play. They play at Oklahoma State Wednesday.
Points: Richard Roby 22
Rebounds: Roby 6
Assists: Marcus Hall 5
Turnovers: three with 3
Blocks: Marcus King-Stockton 2
Steals: Dwight Thorne 2
Points: Darnell Jackson 18
Rebounds: Brandon Rush 6
Assists: Mario Chalmers 6
Turnovers: Sherron Collins 5
Blocks: two with 2
Steals: Chalmers 3