CU Buff Football
Number 12 Colorado’s 49-24 win over Arizona on Saturday night. Buffaloes quarterback Sefo Liufau went 19 of 27 for 213 yards, 3 touchdowns and 1 interception, while on the ground Phillip Lindsay rushed for 119 yard From Pak 12
From Neil woelk CU Buffaloes
TUCSON, Ariz. — It might not have been picture perfect, but on a day when upsets commanded college football headlines, the Colorado Buffaloes’ 49-24 win over Arizona on Saturday evening was plenty good enough.
Guaranteed, the folks at Clemson, Michigan, Washington, Auburn and Texas A&M would love to be discussing a win this morning.
Not that the Buffs (No. 16 AP, No. 12 CFP) were ever in danger of falling prey to an upset. After a slow start, the offense did its job, pulling away to a 28-10 halftime lead and a 42-10 edge by the end of the third quarter.
The defense, meanwhile, spent the evening playing bend but don’t break. The Buffs did give up more yards than most folks would have guessed — Arizona actually outgained Colorado 417-388 — but the Buffs also keep the Wildcats out of the end zone when it mattered most.
Thus, while a suddenly finicky fan base may find some things to question, the bottom line is this: the team picked to finish last in the Pac-12 South is instead 8-2 overall and leading the division with a 6-1 record with two games to go. That same team will now play host to Washington State on Saturday in a game that will feature the Pac-12′s division leaders.
Kickoff is set for 1:30 p.m. at Folsom Field and the game will be nationally televised by Fox (KDVR) with Gus Johnson and former Buffs quarterback standout Joel Klatt calling the game.
Let’s repeat that. Colorado and Washington State will square off Saturday in Boulder in late November in a game featuring the Pac-12 division leaders.
Savor that for just a minute — then consider what the Buffs accomplished on a day when the football gods were casting about all manner of complications for teams around the nation.
For starters, the Buffs got their offense moving back in the right direction. Quarterback Sefo Liufau threw for 213 yards and three touchdowns, and also ran for 56 yards and another score. Running back Phillip Lindsay notched his third 100-yard game this season, finishing with 119 and three touchdowns. Wide receiver Shay Fields caught six passes for 108 yards and a pair of scores and fellow wideout Jay MacIntyre had a 40-yard touchdown reception, the longest of his career.
“It was good to get the offense back on track,” Fields said. “We did some good things. We still made some mistakes, but we did what we have to do.”
Even more impressive was that the offense did it behind a patchwork line. Starting left tackle Jeromy Irwin, who was sick all week, did not play — but senior Shane Callahan stepped in and performed admirably. Starting right tackle Sam Kronshage didn’t play because of a shoulder injury, but redshirt freshman Aaron Haigler filled the bill in his stead. Starting left guard Gerrad Kough went out with an ankle injury and his replacement, Jonathan Huckins, also went out briefly with an injury before returning.
But when push came to shove, CU’s offensive line shoved the Wildcats out of the way, paving the way for a respectable 175 yards on the ground while limiting Arizona to just two quarterback sacks.
“Klayton (Adams, offensive line coach) did an unbelievable job with them,” head coach Mike MacIntyre said. “And my hat’s off to Shane Callahan. He went in at left tackle and played awesome.”
Defensively, the Buffs were good enough and then some. While Arizona quarterback Brandon Dawkins and running back Samajie Grant did cause some problems, the Buffs stopped them when they had no other choice. CU’s defense was outstanding inside the 20, limiting the Wildcats to one touchdown in the first three quarters. CU recorded four quarterback sacks, including a pair from Jimmie Gilbert, while getting nine tackles from Kenneth Olugbode and six apiece from Ryan Moeller and Gilbert.
CU also kept alive its nation-leading streak of producing at least one defensive takeaway, stretching the mark to 23 when Rick Gamboa recorded a second-quarter fumble recovery.
And, CU’s special teams were up to snuff. Davis Price returned to placekicking duties and was perfect on seven PAT tries while CU’s return teams were solid, as were the coverage teams.
It was, simply a top-to-bottom efficient, effective performance on a day when plenty of other top-20 teams couldn’t muster the same kind of effort. The Buffs left for Arizona aiming to come home one step closer to their goal of a Pac-12 championship, and they accomplished exactly that.
Now, they’ll have the chance to seal the deal at home. They host Washington State next Saturday, followed by the regular season finale with Utah one week later at Folsom Field.
“Our young men have taken us from good to really good,” MacIntyre said. “Now they have a chance to take us to great.”
Already, the Buffs have accomplished more than most people believed possible when the season began. But no one in the CU locker room is ready to pronounced the mission accomplished.
“We’re one step closer,” Liufau said. “Now Washington State is the biggest game for us. They just keep getting a little more important every week.”
For the older players on team, those who have been through two or three years of difficult times, games such as Saturday’s win are simply another reminder of where they’ve been and how far they’ve come. They came into the game having lost four straight to the Wildcats; now UA is just the latest team to see such a win streak against Colorado come to an end.
“We’re getting closer to that complete game,” Liufau said. “We needed the offense to come around and help the defense out. Our special teams played well. We know we can play better; we just have to go out and do that next week.”
If you look hip hop and all gangster, all eyes will be on you where ever you go.
If you are Asian, you are less suspect. Try to look like a nerd . If you are middle eastern try to look as American as you can. Many of you are rich, hang together, don’t drink and are fashionable. That goes a long way here. Goes without saying don’t wear hodgie clothes not matter if some white people do. They’re stupid and they don’t understand the implications… but the police do and Afgan and Iraqi war veterans who you will be going to school with don’t think hodgie clothes are cool. It makes them nervous and you suspect.
Most Strict sharia Muslims were thrown out of Boulder after 911. They FBI came to CU and revoked everyone’s passports. So don’t go grocery shopping at 1:00 am with your wife following behind you in a Birka. Dropped the Birka and any of that child or woman repressive civil rights stuff while you are in Boulder.
In all my years with my involvement with Police and law enforcement one thought comes to mind. They do have the power, training, wherewithal and the guns to kill you at the drop of a hat. Like an explosive offensive lineman in football cops are like wild beasts ready to strike without warning. So you have to be mindful of that. You are not dealing with an ordinary person. You are always dealing with someone who can knock you to the ground, handcuff you and take away your freedom or your life. They are a gang of trained killers who live in a closed society. They are the military except on American soil. Our Military only operates on foreign soil where the host country fears for their lives. Cops are color blind. They only see blue. They are a brotherhood of men and women who rule the streets. They have rules of engagement which are less strict than our US Marine Corps.
That means if you frighten them them they can and will shoot to kill you. They do not have much of an in between.
So I always approach cops with this in mind. I am not stupid. I don’t ever do things to antagonize them. I never fight with them or argue with then.
They have the gun on their holster. They have the badge of authority and the entire police department, district attorneys office and local government behind them.
Cops are the wrong people to fuck with always. Many of them are stressed and overworked. They spend much of the day dealing with scumbag wife beaters, child abusers, drug addicts and alcoholics, thieves etc.
So when they run up on you in a traffic stop just know you have a wilkd lion coming up to your car and you don’t want to piss him or her off.
What to do in a traffic stop.
1. Pull over to the right immediately and stop.
2. Don’t get out of the car.
3. Put your hands up on the steering wheel and keep them there.
4. If it is night , turn your overhead light on so the officer can see your hands.
5. Don’t go fishing around for your license or registration in the glove box.
6. Sit still and wait for the cop to come to your window and wait for instructions.
7. Cops get nervous when you go to the glove box or start fishing around. They worry that you might have a gun or someone in the car has a gun .
8. Be polite. Yes sir no sir goes a long way. Don’t argue with him.
9 I have found that being polite to a police officer always helps….. If I have done something wrong in the vehicle I just admit it or say i didn’t realize and apologize. That approach will get you less point on a ticket or a warning. I almost never get stopped and when I do it is usually with a warning.
10. I am serious. I could have driven over the guys mother and he’ll give me a warning. Why. because I pose no threat.
12. Now of course I am white, middle aged and look like Rush Limbaugh so that helps… a lot. I am usually well dressed and well spoken. I don’t give off attitude.
13 I have no idea what to say to those of you who are black, Latino, or wear gangster clothes. I would take my hat off and do your best Eddie Murphy impression.
14. when I was a long haired hippie and on drugs and wearing weird clothes… believe it or not I was the guy who was cool calm and collected around cops. I was often the spokesperson. ” Yes sir. No problem here sir. thank you sir . no sir yes sir. did you want to fuck one of the girls sir cause that one there thinks your cute.” I mean , I will do anything to keep the heat off and make sure the cops are feeling non threatened. I just try to be nice to them. Cause nobody else has been all day and they appreciate it.. And that means they will go find somebody else to eat.
15. If you have somebody with you who is being agro toward the cops, you tell that person to “shut the fuck up” in no uncertain terms. You tell the cop .. “You will have no problem with us sir, I am sorry for my disrespectful friend he was smoking crack before you so caringly stopped us ” and then you make sure a friend sits on that guy or girl.
16. Now you people of color, try to dress as white as you can. And talk as white as you can. Wear Kakis and a blue oxford shirt and a red and blue stripped tie. Talk about how you love the police and hope to be a police officer next year. Smile like Chris Rock and mention church.
sorry that is how it goes. This is a white mans world. White businessmen do rule…Next come our white women and our white children. If you are rich like me and live in a rich white city like Boulder you get treated like a Lord by the cops. Then again I don’t fuck up. I am not out dealing drugs, shooting people, robbing, stealing rapping or walking the streets. I am scared shitless. But I get more points than you.
If you are black, Latino or homeless you will always be stopped by the cops in rich white Boulder or any affluent white neighborhood in America.
So how you carry yourself, what you wear and how you speak in the presence of law enforcement officers will make the difference of whether you live or die tonight.
Jann Scott has covered the police for over 20 years
by Jann Scott
Jann Scott’s Journal
from White Boulder
and now one of my favorite bands
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By: B.G. Brooks, CUBuffs.com Contributing Editor
BOULDER – Southern California continued its mastery over Colorado on Saturday night, beating the Buffs 47-29 for its eighth consecutive win in the series and snuffing CU’s faint hope of reaching the postseason.
Their disappointing Senior Night at frigid Folsom Field dropped the Buffs to 4-7 overall (1-7 Pac-12) and sends them to Utah next Saturday to end their season. With an upset of the No. 23 Trojans, the Buffs would have moved within one win of bowl eligibility with the trip to Salt Lake City awaiting.
Now, Mike MacIntyre’s first CU team simply will try to end the season on an upbeat note. “To me this should be a fun week for us,” MacIntyre said, citing no classes because of Thanksgiving break, the focus on football, and the camaraderie he believes his players have established with each other and with his coaching staff.
“These young men, we have bonded with them and they have bonded with us,” MacIntyre said. “I’ve liked their effort, what they’ve done . . . they’ve been through a lot. It’s not always happened on the scoreboard for us, but we have made progress.”
“I think this year we’ve made incredible strides,” added sophomore receiver Nelson Spruce. “We’re on the verge of being able to compete in every game . . . I think we built a lot this year with this staff.”
CU’s seniors, said MacIntyre, “have helped this program move forward” and enabled him to chart progress in his first year. “But we need to start seeing more progress on the scoreboard . . . I’d definitely like to see that ‘W’ Saturday – just like Utah would.”
But in mid-20-degree temperatures Saturday night – the second-coldest game ever for USC – the Trojans showed the Buffs how much more work is ahead. CU, which has been outscored 277-76 by USC in their eight meetings, lost its 14th consecutive game to a ranked opponent. The Buffs’ last win against a Top 25 team was in 2009 against No. 17 Kansas (34-30).
USC (9-3, 6-2 – including 6-1 under interim coach Ed Orgeron) took advantage of a pair of late first-half turnovers by CU freshman quarterback Sefo Liufau to go ahead 23-0 at intermission. The Buffs converted a Trojans fumble into a score before the second half was a minute old, but never could generate enough offense to catch USC.
“I’m proud of how our guys kept fighting, kept battling,” MacIntyre said, “but we just couldn’t get anything going offensively in the first half.”
Playing only three quarters, Trojans quarterback Cody Kessler completed 19-of-28 passes for 184 yards and two touchdowns. But USC did most of its damage with sophomore tailback Javorius Allen, who rushed for 145 yards and three touchdowns before given the rest of the night off midway through the fourth quarter.
Liufau finished 17-of-33 passing for 188 yards and two touchdowns, with one interception. His scoring passes went to Paul Richardson (5 yards) and Spruce (38). Richardson finished with eight receptions – all in the second half – for 88 yards and the score. Michael Adkins II led the Buffs in rushing with 63 yards on 13 carries (one TD).
MacIntyre said USC double-covered Richardson frequently in the first half, then went to more “quarters” coverage in the second half. “We were able to get him the ball a little more,” MacIntyre said. “And we moved him around a little more.”
USC outgained CU 449-312 in total offense, with just over half of the Buffs’ output coming in the fourth quarter. Through three quarters, CU had 150 yards of total offense against a USC defense that ranks second in the Pac-12.
“Their front seven was by far the best we’ve played,” Liufau said. “They got pressure on us and their defensive backs covered really well . . . they were always in the right spots.”
USC left top receiver Marqise Lee at home to nurse a shin injury, but the Trojans really didn’t need him. The Buffs had no success against the Trojans defense in the first half, and CU’s offense was far too generous to USC. The Trojans capitalized on the pair of Liufau turnovers – one fumble, one interception – to go ahead 23-0 at halftime and put the Buffs in an all-too-familiar hole.
“It was a combination of things,” Liufau said of CU’s lack of first-half productivity. “We didn’t get anything clicking at the beginning.”
“It was a lack of execution, the coaches had a good plan for us,” added Spruce, who made four catches for 52 yards – including his 38-yard TD.
Although they able to generate only 36 yards in total offense in the first quarter, CU had stayed close, trailing only 9-0 at quarter’s end. USC drove 71 yards in 10 plays on its first possession and went ahead 7-0 on Allen’s 12-yard run and Andre Heidari’s extra point kick.
With 1:04 left in the quarter, USC’s advantage went to 9-0 when Soma Vainuku blocked Darragh O’Neill’s punt out of the end zone for a safety. Still, the Buffs have seen much worse than a nine-point deficit after one quarter.
But midway through the second quarter, things did get worse.
Pulled down from the backside by defensive end Leonard Williams, Liufau lost the ball and USC end George Uko gathered it in at the CU 20-yard line. Five plays later, Allen scored his second TD, this one on a 1-yard run. The Trojans went up 16-0, but still more problems for Liufau and the Buffs awaited.
On CU’s next series, USC free safety Dion Bailey pulled in a Liufau pass that appeared headed for the Buffs bench. At their own 34, the Trojans had 2:34 – but no timeouts – to make a push for the end zone. They didn’t need the timeouts; Kessler took them the distance in eight plays, hitting receiver Nelson Agholor with a 20-yard scoring pass.
The Buffs were looking at a 23-0 deficit – and Richardson was still looking for his first catch – when the second half opened. USC outgained CU 206-73 in the first half, including 169-43 on the ground. Liufau completed only four of 15 first-half passes for 43 yards, and his two turnovers were costly.
CU needed a break – and got it – to start the second half. On USC’s first possession, Allen was stripped of the ball by CU safety Jered Bell, who scooped and scored with a 31-yard run. With Will Oliver’s PAT, the Buffs trailed 23-7.
If CU had a comeback in mind, a defensive stop was needed. It didn’t happen; USC went 75 yards on the ensuing possession, getting a 46-yard run from Allen and scoring on a 10-yard pass from Kessler to tight end Randall Telfer. The Buffs were again looking at a 23-point deficit (30-7) with 11:29 left in the third quarter.
Less than 5 minutes later, Allen took revenge on Bell, juking him with an outside fake and cutting inside on the way to a 23-yard TD. USC went up 37-7 and Allen went over 100 yards rushing (123) with his third TD of the night.
Less than a minute into the fourth quarter, Liufau and Spruce teamed for their 38-yard score, with Spruce taking the ball off the back of a USC defender at the 1-yard line and stepping into the end zone. Oliver’s extra point made it 37-14, but Heidari’s 39-yard field goal extended the Trojans’ margin to 40-14 with 10:14 to play.
A 30-yard Liufau completion to Richardson set up a 3-yard TD run by Adkins that got the Buffs to within 40-21. That was followed by a Liufau-to-Richardson 5-yard scoring pass and Liufau’s two-point conversion pass to D.D. Goodson that drew the Buffs to within 40-29.
CU attempted an on-sides kick, but USC recovered with 3:16 left and when Vainuku scored on a 52-yard run a minute later and Heidari booted the extra point, the night’s scoring and CU’s home season were done.
Now comes the final week week of practice and the season finale at Utah. “Coach said we could fall apart or end the season on the right note and go into next year,” Spruce said.
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by B.G. Brooks,
CUBuffs.com contributing editor
BOULDER – It took seven tries before the Colorado Buffaloes could present coach Mike MacIntyre with his first Pac-12 Conference win, but the Buffs accomplished it – plus a lot more – Saturday afternoon at cold and windswept Folsom Field.
CU slapped California 41-24, ending the Buffs’ 14-game Pac-12 losing streak (six this season, eight last) and keeping their postseason hopes flickering for at least another weekend.
Maybe just as important, said MacIntyre, “I think it validates, to the players, their hard work is paying off . . . this validates staying the course, you keep working, keep working, you keep planting the seeds; you keep watering the seeds and eventually they start to sprout. No way we are there yet, by any stretch, but this is a good step in the right direction.”
Improving to 4-6 overall and 1-6 in the Pac-12, CU needs two more wins to become bowl eligible for the first time since 2007. Two games remain – next Saturday on Senior Day vs. Southern California at Folsom Field (kickoff time to be set Monday) and Saturday, Nov. 30 at Utah.
As October neared an end, MacIntyre said he wanted his team to make November a month that mattered in CU football. “Some people thought I was crazy when I said that a while back,” he said. “I thought we could win some games here, and I still do, I still think we can win some more left; they’re going to be real tough, against real good football teams.
“But, now there is a little bit more to play for. Senior Day is awesome for the seniors, but now the seniors actually have a little bit more to play for, and so do the players out there. So, when they come back Sunday, I guarantee they will be a little bit more tuned up and a little bit sharper. I wish they were always that way, but they’ll be a little bit better on their Ps and Qs. They’ll be watching a little bit extra film, and they’ll be excited about what’s going on.”
The Buffs’ 485 yards in total offense against the Bears marked their most productive game since getting 509 in the season-opening win against Colorado State. The bulk of CU’s total Saturday was produced by freshman quarterback Sefo Liufau, who enjoyed his most productive passing day since becoming CU’s starter six games ago. He completed 23 of 36 passes for a career-high 364 yards and three touchdowns, with one interception.
MacIntyre said Liufau “played really, really well. He got hit on the arm on the one interception, but came back and made some really good plays. I think maybe ya’ll are starting a little bit of what I see (in Liufau). Hopefully he’ll just keep improving, and I know he will. There is no way he’ll get big-headed.”
Liufau, said junior receiver Paul Richardson, “showed what he is capable of. Each and every week he is getting better . . . Sefo is growing up; he gives us hope.”
Liufau’s explanation of his best night to date was simple: “I think I got into a really good rhythm. I felt like the offense overall was just clicking. Obviously, there was one or two times where our drives sputtered out, but I think overall the offense tonight was really good.”
The fleet Richardson did his part, as did Nelson Spruce. Over half of Liufau’s completions went to “P-Rich” (11 catches, 140 yards) and Spruce (8 catches, career-high 140 yards). Richardson’s 11 catches tied the school single-game record, and his 140 yards put him at 1,201 – a single-season school mark.
Richardson called setting the record “good for the university. I’ve said it before: they bring guys in each year hoping that they can do better than the guys in the past. We have to rewrite history in order to get this program back to being successful.”
Liufau’s three TD tosses were to tailbacks Michael Adkins II (63 yards) and Tony Jones (11) and tight end Kyle Slavin (10). CU tailback Christian Powell ran for a 2-yard score and Spruce returned an on-sides kick attempt 46 yards for CU’s final TD with just over 6 minutes left in the game.
“I was extremely surprised,” Spruce said. “I caught it, and normally you would fall on it. But I kind of froze up and then I saw the sideline and just took off . . . it was a lot fun out there today. With the wind blowing and having all the heaters on the sidelines, it was kind of a different game. We were able to get that win to stay bowl eligible. We talked about how we were going to win these last three games . . . this was a great win for us.”
If CU could celebrate the end of its long conference losing streak, Cal saw its streak extended. The Bears, who now have allowed 40-plus points in eight games this season, have lost 13 consecutive Pac-12 games and 15 straight to FBS competition. They dropped to 1-10 overall and 0-8 in the conference.
The Buffs closed out the first half by scoring twice in just under 2 minutes to take a 24-10 lead at intermission. That pair of swift scores came on an 11-yard pass from Liufau to Jones and a 2-yard run by Powell, who finished with 60 yards on 18 carries. Adkins ran nine times for 39 yards and Jones’ eight attempts netted 22 yards.
Powell’s TD came after Cal fumbled the kickoff following Jones’ score. With the wind swirling through Folsom, Will Oliver kept his kickoff low – a line drive that bounded off the chest of Cal up man Lucas King and was gathered in by CU’s Isaac Archuletta at the Bears 49-yard line.
Eight plays later – not including a costly roughing the passer call on Cal that salvaged CU’s drive on third-and-12 – Powell ran left and untouched into the end zone, giving the Buffs their two-touchdown halftime lead.
CU never trailed, going up 3-0 on Oliver’s 27-yard first-quarter field goal (he had missed from 40 on the Buffs’ opening drive), then increasing the margin to 10-0 on a 10-yard Liufau pass to Slavin. It was Slavin’s second career TD.
Cal pulled to 10-3 on a 42-yard Vincenzo D’Amato field goal with 8:25 left before halftime. Less than 2 minutes later, the Bears tied the score at 10-10 on a 55-yard sprint by Khalfani Muhammad. The Buffs answered with their two quick scores and had their first halftime lead in Pac-12 play this season.
Bears QB Jared Goff, a true freshman, completed only 11 of 21 first-half passing attempts for 79 yards and finished with 23-of-45 for 173 yards – his second-lowest total of the season. MacIntyre said CU’s secondary had learned from getting “toasted,” and also said the Buffs “had a great pass rush. He was under duress and that helps the secondary tremendously.”
Cal pulled a special teams switch with Goff in the first half, using him to pooch punt for the first time in his career. He punted three times for a 40.3 average, with one punt downed inside the 20 and a pair of touchbacks. On fourth down of their first second-half possession, the Bears went back to regular punter Cole Leininger.
CU and Liufau dodged a bullet early in third quarter when Liufau suffered his sixth interception of the season. With his arm hit in mid-release, his fluttering pass was picked off by Cal linebacker Jalen Jefferson at the CU 38-yard line. But the Buffs allowed the Bears only three yards on four downs and escaped any damage from the turnover.
Cal coach Sonny Dykes pulled Goff on the Bears’ fourth series of the third quarter, replacing him with redshirt freshman Zach Kline. Nothing changed; the Bears went three-and-out, giving the Buffs possession at their 23 after a Leininger punt.
Liufau promptly drove CU to the Cal 7-yard line, where the drive stalled and Oliver kicked his second field goal of the game – a 24-yarder that pushed the Buffs up 27-10, with that score holding for the rest of the third quarter.
In the first 3 minutes of the final quarter, CU all but put the ‘W’ away on the 63-yard catch-and-run from Liufau to Adkins. He scrambled out of at least four tackles, sprinting and weaving in front of the Buffs bench on his way to the end zone.
Oliver’s PAT made it 34-10 with 12:22 remaining, and Cal’s challenge went from daunting to nearly impossible. Dykes went back to Goff at QB on the next series, and Goff drove the Bears 52 yards in 10 plays, with running back Brendan Bigelow scoring on a 1-yard run. That pulled Cal to 34-17, but the on-sides kick attempt backfired when Spruce fielded the ball cleanly and returned it 46 yards for a touchdown.
After Oliver kicked CU ahead 41-17, Cal got its final TD on a 26-yard Bigelow run, making the score 41-24 with 1:21 left. And this time, the Bears executed the on-sides kick, but Goff was intercepted in the end zone by corner Kenneth Crawley.
The Buffs had less than half a minute remaining before they could finally sing their fight song following a 2013 Pac-12 game. They did so in front of the student section, then went to the opposite side of Folsom Field and encored before the CU band.
“I was so happy for them,” MacIntyre said. “Our coaching staff has worked tirelessly and really hard keep those young men together and focused. And then, I would like to thank our fans. I thought it was an exciting atmosphere. That’s a stepping block for us going into the future.”
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Behind a career-high 192 yards rushing by QB B.J. Denker and another 119 by tailback Ka’Deem Carey, low by his standards, the Wildcats waltzed to a 44-20 win at Folsom Field.
Denker ran for 192 yards against CU
Arizona (5-2, 2-2) amassed 670 yards in total offense – the third most in school history – with 405 of it on the ground. CU (3-4, 0-4) dropped a game below .500 and left its homefield still looking for its first conference win of the Mike MacIntyre Era.
“We just have to keep fighting and keep moving forward,” a disconcerted MacIntyre said. “It’s disheartening for the kids. They’re battling and just (short) a few plays here and there.”
The Buffs open November with a pair of difficult road games – at UCLA next weekend (5:30 p.m. MDT, Pac-12 Networks), followed by a trip to Seattle to play Washington on Nov. 9.
Denker, a senior who debuted as Arizona’s starter last season against CU, also completed 21 of 32 passes for 265 yards and a touchdown, giving him 457 yards in total offense – the sixth-highest output in school history. His 192 yards rushing is believed to be a school record for a QB.
“We couldn’t tackle the quarterback . . . we must have missed him seven times. Probably 200 yards of offense off of missed tackles on the quarterback,” MacIntyre said. He also said Denker “threw the ball better than I’ve ever seen him throw in every game I’ve watched him play . . . he came through, he did a great job.”
Arizona coach Rich Rodriquez said Denker’s performance “was big . . . they were loading the box to stop Ka’Deem and were going to have to take the ball up high. Obviously, B.J. running was a key.”
“I think we just weren’t keyed in to some of our responsibilities,” said CU defensive end Chidera Uzo-Diribe of Denker’s performance. “It was a big thing to make sure we don’t get him running, but obviously we allowed him to run.”
Carey, a junior who rushed for a conference record 366 yards last November in a 56-31 rout of the Buffs, scored four touchdowns Saturday night, giving him nine against CU in their last two meetings. He entered the night as the nation’s leading rusher, but his 119 yards were 42 below his average (161.0).
“We stopped Carey pretty good,” MacIntyre said. “He ran over us a few times, but he’s going to do that against everybody.”
Carey had a long run of 30 yards, but Denker’s long jaunt of 54 was a career-best, and Carey’s backup – Daniel Jenkins – had a 56-yarder en route to a nine-carry, 87-yard performance.
Slowing Carey was of little solace to MacIntyre, who said he was “very concerned” about his defense. “We played as hard as we can play. We just have to keep coaching them . . . there’s some good offenses in this league.”
CU freshman quarterback Sefo Liufau, making his first Pac-12 start, finished 17-for-32 for 212 yards and a 75-yard touchdown to Paul Richardson, who made seven catches for 132 yards. The Buffs managed 349 yards in total offense, 137 of them on the ground.
MacIntyre said Liufau “missed a couple of guys he could have hit (but) I thought he did some good things. He has to keep improving.”
Buffs placekicker Will Oliver kicked a pair of field goals, including a career-best 53-yarder. Oliver said his long kick “was the worst kick of the three . . . it’s always good to break PRs, but I missed the 52 (yarder), so it kind of takes away from it. It still feels good; I’m glad they trust me.”
But on this night, with the Wildcats running free and largely unchallenged, the Buffs needed sixes rather than threes against an opponent their coach believed they could not only compete against but defeat.
“We should have won the game,” MacIntyre said.
Indeed, the Buffs played the Wildcats toe-to-toe through the game’s first 271/2 minutes, even taking a 13-10 lead on Liufau’s 75-yard TD pass to Richardson and a pair of Oliver field goals that were set up by Arizona turnovers.
CU linebacker Woodson Greer recovered an Arizona fumble that led to Oliver’s 53-yard field goal – a career long – and tied the score at 10-10 with 14:50 left in the second quarter. Just under 5 minutes later, after Oliver was wide left on a 52-yard attempt, Denker was intercepted by Buffs safety Jered Bell, who returned the pick 26 yards to the Wildcats 49.
Seven plays later, CU had to settle for another Oliver field goal – this one a 48-yarder that pushed the Buffs in front for the first time, 13-10, with 5:07 left before halftime.
But the first half ended with CU failing to finish what had been a promising start and setting a disastrous tone for the second half.
Allowing the Wildcats two touchdowns in the first half’s final 2:28, the Buffs found themselves trailing 24-13 at intermission. Arizona got the first of those two scores on a 7-yard run by Carey, capping a nine-play, 75-yard march. Then, after Arizona’s defense forced a CU three-and-out, Carey ran 30 yards and Denker connected with slot receiver Nate Phillips, who got a step on Bell, for a 44-yard TD pass.
Those two late TDs were the Wildcats’ lone hints of offense after they had marched 88 yards on their opening possession and taken a 7-0 lead on Carey’s 1-yard dive – the 14th play of the drive.
CU tied the score on the long Liufau-Richardson scoring pass, then Jake Smith’s 37-yard field goal sent Arizona up 10-7 with 4:34 left in the first quarter. From then until their surge to end the half, the Wildcats were relatively tame – but the Buffs couldn’t take advantage.
Arizona ended the first half with a season-high 361 yards in total offense (210 rushing, 151 passing). Meanwhile, CU mustered 189 and converted only four of 11 third-down attempts. After rushing for just nine yards in the first quarter, the Buffs finished the half with 42. Carey’s first half work: 97 yards on 17 carries and two TDs. Denker added 44 yards on seven rushes but was just discovering his stride.
Needing a defensive stop to open the second half, the Buffs got a partial stop. Three plays – two of them runs by Denker that netted 65 yards – put the Wildcats inside the Buffs’ 10 with first-and-goal. But CU held Arizona to a field goal – a 26-yarder by Smith – then responded with its own 75-yard drive (nine plays) and pulled to within seven (27-20) on Michael Adkins II’s 1-yard plunge and Oliver’s PAT.
Back came the Wildcats . . . Carey scored his third TD of the night – another 1-yard dive – and Smith kicked Arizona ahead again by two touchdowns (34-20) with 7:55 left in the third quarter.
Back came the Buffs . . . just not far enough. Liufau, with the help of a personal foul (facemask) on Arizona cornerback Jonathan McKnight that nullified an interception, drove CU to the Arizona 4-yard line but no further. Liufau’s fourth-down pass to the end zone fell incomplete.
“The coaches have the best interest and know what’s best for the team,” Liufau said of the fourth-down gamble. “You never question the coach; you know, if they want to go for a field goal, onside kick, whatever the call may be. I think it was a great decision.”
After it was made, just over 3 minutes later, the fourth quarter began with the Buffs still trailing by 14 points.
And the end was beginning . . . CU attempted a fake punt at its own 15-yard line, with punter Darragh O’Neill trying to skirt left end but being hammered after a 3-yard gain to the 18. Carey needed two runs to cover that distance, scoring his fourth TD on a 6-yard run up the middle.
MacIntyre defended the fake punt call “because if you saw us playing defense, we couldn’t stop them and I thought it was a good place to try . . . he (O’Neill) was supposed to read it. We’ve had five on this year and we’ve punted all five. We thought we had a chance, he thought he had a chance and we didn’t get it.”
After Smith’s extra point the Wildcats were cruising, 41-20, with 14:30 remaining. He added a 28-yard field goal to make it 44-20 with 9:10 to play, and Arizona needed no more points to put this one away.
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Game Story by B.G. Brooks CUBuffs.com contributing editor
BOULDER – Stepping away from their Pac-12 Conference schedule on a perfect mid-October Saturday, the Colorado Buffaloes eventually stepped out of Folsom Field with a 43-10 romp past overmatched Charleston Southern.
The Buffs’ Big Stepper was tailback Michael Adkins II.
Adkins, a true freshman from San Diego, accounted for a freshman school record four touchdowns on runs of 23, 5, 33 yards and 34 yards. Entering Saturday’s game, the Buffs had scored one rushing TD in their previous five games.
“We always say we want to be about 50-50 (run-pass), it depends on how the game goes,” said Adkins, who finished with 137 yards on 13 carries. “But running today definitely was a factor.”
And how. Tailback/fullback Christian Powell also scored on a 2-yard run as the Buffs enjoyed their most productive running afternoon of the season (218 yards). Adkins’ four TDs eclipsed the school freshman record set by Herschel Troutman in 1994 and equaled by Powell last season.
The Buffs’ top rushing effort this season had been 154 yards in a 44-17 loss at Oregon State. In the two games before Saturday, they had totaled 94 yards against Oregon and 99 against Arizona State. Adkins’ carries had steadily risen in the three previous games, with his 98 yards on 14 attempts at OSU the previous high mark for a CU back this season.
“My carries have been increasing every week so I just took advantage of the carries I got,” Adkins said. “Our line blocked well and I just kept grinding and kept finding the holes . . . it gave me a lot of confidence. I didn’t score in my first two games, so scoring today gives me a lot of confidence moving forward.”
The Buffs broke a three-game losing streak, evened their record at 3-3 and won their first game under first-time starting quarterback Sefo Liufau. CU returns to Pac-12 competition and remain at home next weekend, hosting Arizona (6 p.m., Pac-12 Network) in a game that suddenly looms as perhaps the schedule’s most pivotal.
With Saturday’s win, CU’s goal now becomes to win its first Pac-12 game under first-year coach Mike MacIntyre next week and exit October 4-3 overall. That leaves five conference games in the season’s final month for the Buffs to get two wins and reach six for bowl qualification – something that hasn’t happened since the 2006 season.
“If we get the one next week,” said MacIntyre, “it means November matters in Colorado.”
A true freshman from Tacoma, Wash., Liufau made his college debut last weekend at Arizona State, replacing junior Connor Wood in the first quarter of CU’s 54-13 loss. Liufau finished 18-of-26 for 169 yards and a touchdown, with two interceptions, in that game.
In his first start Saturday, he was 14-of-20 for 198 yards. Liufau’s TD pass covered 60 yards, most of them courtesy of fleet junior Paul Richardson in the second quarter. Richardson finished with eight receptions for 122 yards.
“It feels good,” Liufau said of his home debut and first start. “It was fun being out there with the guys and just playing and having fun.” He called he confidence gained from the win “a tribute to the team – the O-line blocking, the receivers running the routes. Paul had a great play there . . . I definitely got confidence as I kept going.”
The game against previously unbeaten CSU, the FCS’ No. 24-ranked team, was arranged last month to replace Fresno State on the CU schedule. The Fresno State contest was postponed due to the mid-September floods that ravaged Boulder and Boulder County.
“I’m thankful that Charleston Southern wanted to play us,” MacIntyre said. “Or we couldn’t have played today.”
CSU, which entered the afternoon 7-0, was without its first two quarterbacks and started freshman Kyle Copeland, who was playing in only his third game and had thrown two incompletions in his only two attempts. Copeland’s final passing stats: 7-of-14 for 48 yards, one TD, one interception.
CU outgained CSU 416-196 in total offense, with the Buffs adjusting to the Buccaneers’ option attack and holding them to zero points and 46 total yards in the second half.
“(CU) is just a better team than us,” said CSU coach Jamey Chadwell. “We had seven wins before today and I don’t think that’s going to change. The only difference is that won’t play quite as good of a team. They made some good adjustments during the second half, and as for us, we’re going to keep doing what we do.”
The Buffs got out of the first half with a 22-10 lead largely made possible by a timely fumble recovery by Nate Bonsu and Richardson’s runaway speed.
Bonsu got the loose ball following defensive end Chidera Uzo-Diribe’s strip of CSU quarterback Kyle Copeland at the Buccaneers’ 12-yard line in the second quarter. Two plays later, Adkins took a handoff headed off left tackle, weaved to his right and scored from 5 yards out.
Will Oliver’s PAT staked CU to a 15-3 lead that ballooned to 22-3 after a three-and-out CSU series and a 60-yard pitch-and-catch executed by Liufau and Richardson.
Credit Liufau with keeping the play afloat; he fielded a bouncing center snap, collected himself and spotted Richardson crossing right to left in front of the formation. “P-Rich” took the short pass, reversed his field and outran two Buccaneers in pursuit to the right pylon.
Oliver again kicked the extra point and CU seemed comfortably ahead 22-3. The Buffs had opened the game with a 65-yard, six-play scoring drive, getting 52 yards on the ground – the last 23 by Adkins. They went ahead 8-0 when holder Darragh O’Neill ran for the two-point conference.
But after CU had surged in front 22-3, CSU collected itself for its second 9-plus minute drive of the half – the first ended with a field goal when an apparent TD pass on a well-designed pitch was reviewed and overruled – and scored on a 7-yard Copeland to Colton Korn with six left before intermission.
The disallowed TD proved pivotal. The play initially was reviewed and not overturned, but MacIntyre called a time out to allow another look and said he was told by an official that the ball being bobbled by tight end Nathan Prater was missed on the first look.
Chadwell said he was upset because “they took a time out, they reviewed the play (and) it was fine. Then the other review took an hour. They (officials) didn’t go by their protocol . . . I just felt like it was huge deal momentum-wise, because that could have meant a touchdown for us.”
CU, which was leading 8-0 at the time, finished the half with 164 yards in total offense, while CSU had 150. Liufau attempted only six first-half passes, completing four for 74 yards – Richardson’s long TD was for 60 – and being sacked once. Copeland, playing in only his second game and 0-2 in passing, was five-for-eight for 27 yards and a TD. The Buccaneers controlled the ball for 21:51 to 8:09 in the opening half.
The Buffs scored on their first possession of the second half, opening a 29-10 lead after a 13-play, 64-yard march capped by Christian Powell’s 2-yard run. Exactly 3 minutes later – at 4:11 – Liufau and his offense failed to capitalize on a Jered Bell interception near midfield, and the quarter ended with CU clutching its 19-point lead.
With 11:22 to play, Adkins’ 33-yard jaunt and Oliver’s extra point sent the Buffs comfortably ahead 36-10. Just over 5 minutes later, Adkins broke loose again and broke three tackles en route to his record-setting fourth rushing TD.
Wood replaced Liufau and Tony Jones replaced Adkins with just over 3 minutes remaining, with CU taking possession near its 15-yard line and ending the game near midfield.
BOULDER — The University of Colorado has secured Charleston Southern University as the opponent to replace the Sept. 14 Fresno State football game which was postponed due to the record rainfall and subsequent flooding in Boulder, CU athletic director Rick George announced Monday.
The game has been scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 19; the kickoff time will be determined once the Pac-12 Conference sets the television schedule for that day next Monday.
CU and Fresno State officials couldn’t come up with a workable scenario to make up the game this season and will discuss future options; the series is a “two-for-one” (two in Boulder, one in Fresno) as the Buffaloes played on the road at Fresno last year and the two are scheduled to meet in Boulder on Sept. 14, 2019.
“The Fresno State athletic department leadership, their president and their fans have all been very supportive and cooperative in our efforts to reschedule this contest,” George said. “We are also most appreciative of Fresno State’s student-athletes collecting donations to aid those victims of the flood.”
Over the last two weeks, George and CU officials contacted nearly three dozen schools on both the FBS (Football Bowl Subdivision) and FCS (Football Championship Subdivision) levels, exploring all options available to find an opponent, preferably for Oct. 19, which was the second open date on CU’s 2013 schedule. The only other possible date would have been the first Friday or Saturday in December, but those were fraught with complications.
Last Friday, Colorado received a waiver from the NCAA for it to be bowl eligible if it gets to six wins this season but if two were to come against FCS teams. Under the current rules, schools are allowed one win over an FCS opponent to count toward the minimum six required for postseason eligibility; the Buffaloes already had played an FCS school, Central Arkansas, winning that game 38-24 back on Sept. 7.
Fans can use the tickets and parking passes dated Sept. 14 with Fresno State for admission to the game; if ticket holders are unable to attend the make-up game on Oct. 19, they can make an exchange for any of CU’s other four home games (Oregon, Arizona, California or Southern California). Those doing so would be on a value for value, best available seating basis which would need to be done before the final home game against USC on Nov. 23.
(The complete ticket policy can be found here:
Charleston Southern (which also goes by CSU) is a member of the Big South Conference and is currently 5-0 on the season; the Buccaneers are ranked just outside the Top 25 in the FCS. To date, they have played and won four games on the road (at The Citadel, Campbell, Norfolk State and Appalachian State) with a win over Shorter at home. They also received a waiver from the NCAA, one that allowed them to play a 13th game, eight of which will be away from Charleston.
“We really appreciate (CSU athletic director) Hank Small and Charleston Southern working with us to schedule this game and we look forward to hosting the Buccaneers on October 19,” George said.
The Buccaneers will be the first school from South Carolina to play a football game in Boulder; CU has played Clemson twice, both in bowl games, and has never faced the University of South Carolina or other FCS schools who have traditionally played schools one division higher, including Coastal Carolina, Furman, Presbyterian or the Citadel.
There are five Pac-12 conference games on Oct. 19, along with one non-league affair, USC playing at Notre Dame; the conference and its television partners make their selections Monday mornings, so the game time will be known on Oct. 7
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DENVER – Anne Stuller’s hat trick and Olivia Pappalardo’s first collegiate goal gave the Buffs’ a 4-1 victory over the University of Tennessee Martin.
In their two games at the DU Invitational at CIBER Field at the University of Denver Soccer Stadium, the Buffaloes took a chart-topping 69 shots, including 38 on goal. The Buffs took 30 shots against the Skyhawks on Sunday afternoon, including an impressive 20 shots in the first half alone. After Friday’s record-breaking performance, Sunday’s game ties for the third most shots taken in a single game. The Skyhawks only got six shots past the solid CU defense, including three on goal.
CU keeper Annie Brunner has allowed just one goal this season, giving her an amazing 0.17 goals-against average through the first six games. She recorded three saves in the win, and is just two wins away from her season records from both 2010 and 2012, which both tie for sixth on the all-time season list. Brunner credits consistency and execution from the backfield and assistant coach Don Trentham’s focus on the details on the team’s defensive success.
“It’s just been nice having a lot of consistency,” Brunner said. “We’ve had Heather (Ward) and Lizzy (Herzl) in there who have just been solid. We haven’t had any injuries, so from the spring to now, having the same back four has been crucial. With Lizzy in there just demanding it and winning all the set balls, making huge clearances, making huge blocked shots. I give it up to those back four.”
Though their five-game shutout streak was put to bed, the Buffs extend their winning streak to a program best 6-0 record. The six game unbeaten streak ties for fifth best in program history. UT Martin falls to 1-4-1 after a tough weekend against Colorado competition.
Just 49 seconds into the game, the Buffs were already on the attack, with Brie Hooks shooting from the right, where Mariah Klenke grabbed the save. The Buffs got two more shots off before the Skyhawks took their first in the eighth minute, but the CU defense was ready for the block. CU would take four more shots over a six minute span, seemingly dominating the offense until UT Martin gained momentum off back-to-back Buffalo fouls.
With Colorado trying to clear the ball away from their net, Hooks fouled the opposition just behind the left corner of the box to set up a free kick. Hannah McGowen shot over the defense, with the ball sliding just right of Brunner to give the Skyhawks the 1-0 lead at the 20:24 mark.
Though the Skyhawks would hit a header high 17 seconds after their first goal, the Buffs wouldn’t allow another shot for the remainder of the first half. CU wasn’t content to play from behind for long, taking under three minutes to even the score and then under two more to take the lead.
“I think we were putting some good pressure on them, so I think the goal was a little against the run of play a bit,” CU head coach Danny Sanchez. “I think we just paid attention and kept doing what we were doing. We knew the chances would come, and fortunately for us, it kind of took the pressure of getting a couple right away. If you leave it too late, you keep yourself under pressure.”
After the UT Martin goal, Hooks took another shot from the right, but was blocked. Stuller got the rebound and was fouled in the box, setting up the Buffs’ first penalty kick of the season. Her PK went just left of center near the keeper. The ball got loose, and Stuller grabbed her own rebound, this time moving a bit right to shoot the ball in.
“I took the PK so I went up and tried to put it in the back of the net, and that’s not what happened, but thankfully it came right back to me and I volleyed it in,” Stuller said.
Just minutes after coming in as a substitution, Pappalardo was ready to make her presence felt. From the midfield, Madison Krauser sent the ball to the left side of the box, where Stuller got a touch before finding Pappalardo near the net to beat the goalie on the inside post. After being down a goal for just three minutes, the Buffs claimed the lead at 25:05.
“Madi passed it to Stu and I was just right on the top of the 18 by myself and I yelled for Stu to kind of leave it,” Pappalardo said. “She took a touch and then passed it right to me and I was wide open. I just one touched it to the goal because I think the goalie was thinking that Stu was going to try to shoot it, so she was in a bad spot. I just hit it in.”
Pappalardo has been a stellar midfielder, having two assists already this season to add to her two from last season, but had yet to score a goal. She said she’s happy to have her first goal in the books after being so close many times this season. She feels she’s finally calmed her nerves and hopes that more will come after this.
The Buffs would take nine more shots in the final 20 minutes of the first half, but would head into halftime with a 2-1 lead.
Both teams were on the attack early in the second half. The Skyhawks would take two early shots, but Stuller and the Buffs were hungry for more goals. In the 65th minute, Krauser passed into the box to Stuller who shot to the far post to help increase the lead to 3-1. Under three minutes later, the duo was at it again, this time with Stuller beating a defender one-on-one to score from 10 yards out, giving the Buffs a 4-1 lead that would hold through regulation.
The multiple goal performance was the sixth of Stuller’s career and her first hat trick. It was just the second hat trick in program history (Jen Thais versus Texas Tech in 2004) and just the fourth time a Buff scored three or more goals in a single game. Stuller is now one multi-goal game away from tying the program record set by both Nikki Marshall and Katie Griffin.
“I’m stoked,” Stuller said. “It’s my first hat trick. There were two great balls from Madi and the PK. It feels good. Brie’s scoring goals; we’re spreading out the offense this year. Madi’s lethal; everybody knows that. Liv got a great goal and she’s always dangerous. And I’m just trying to do my job too … It’s always in your mind when you have two goals because you’re one away and the hat trick is such a coveted thing in soccer. I just wanted to get the win and keep up the pressure.”
Krauser’s three assists were also a record-setter. She is only the second Buff to contribute three assists in a single game, joining Jen Thais (vs. Oklahoma in 2004) at the top of the record books.
The win also marked the 23rd time the Buffs have come back for a win after a 1-0 deficit.
Colorado continues to look impressive through their first six games, but they know they face stiff competition in the coming weeks. The Buffs conclude the non-conference portion of the season next Sunday against in-state rival Denver. The Buffs will take on the nationally ranked team after having competed in two tournaments with the Pioneers this season.
“Denver’s a great team,” Sanchez said. “They’re a top 20 team. They’ve got a great coaching staff and a couple really, really special players. We know it’s going to be a big challenge, but we also know that at the end of the day, it’s a big game, but then next weekend we have two more big games. We want to play well. We want to continue to improve. We’re really excited. We really want to get a big crowd out to Prentup next Sunday at 1 p.m. It’s going to be a great game with a lot of local players and a lot of energy. Both teams only have one game on the weekend, so everyone will be fresh. I think it’s going to be a great game.”
Stand Shoulder to Shoulder with head coach Danny Sanchez and the CU soccer team as they take on the No. 20 ranked Denver Pioneers at 1 p.m. on Sunday, September 15. To celebrate this big game, the first 500 fans to the match will receive a FREE CU soccer T-shirt. Be sure to sit in the Buff Brigade cheering section to show your loud and spirited CU pride!
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By Katie O’Keefe
CSU fell to in-state rival CU, 41-27 on Sunday at Sports Authority Field at Mile High, giving first-year CU head coach Mike MacIntyre his first win as a Buffalo.
In the opening game of the season, CU equaled their entire number of wins from last year (1-11). The Buffs were able to beat the Rams with explosive plays from receiver Paul Richardson and their ability to capitalize on the Rams’ mistakes.
CU was lead by quarterback Connor Wood in his second start for the Buffaloes. He finished the game with 400 yards, three touchdowns and zero interceptions.
“He played like a grown man,” said Richardson. “I couldn’t even tell you how proud I am of him.”
Richardson, who was forced to sit out all of last season because of a torn ACL, was a weapon CSU could not contain. He finished the game with ten catches for 208 yards including an 82-yard touchdown run on CU’s first possession of the game to put the Buffs ahead of the Rams, 7-0.
After a quarterback battle that lasted until game day, CSU quarterback Garrett Grayson was picked to lead the Rams. Grayson finished the game with 201 yards and zero touchdowns.
McElwain said his decision to play Grayson over junior Connor Smith and freshman Nick Stevens was based on Grayson’s preparation for the game.
“I think he was ready,” McElwain said after the game. “I’m not putting this loss on Garrett by any stretch of the imagination.”
The score was 10-0 at the end of the first quarter after the Rams defense held CU to a field goal.
A 49-yard field goal by kicker Jared Roberts put the Rams on the board with 14:17 left in the half.
The Rams receivers struggled to catch the ball throughout the game. The offense finished the game 2-of-14 on third down conversions.
“Offensively we didn’t do a very good job of keeping our defense off the field (by) sustaining drives,” McElwain said.
CU added to their lead after a 17-yard touchdown pass from Wood to receiver D.D. Goodson, making the score 17-3 Buffs with 3:56 left in the first half.
The Rams completed their first third-down conversion on their final drive of the half after previously going 0-for-6. With less than two minutes to go in the half, CSU running back Kapri Bibbs ran the ball for 7 yards and the score to give the Rams their first touchdown of the game and Bibbs’ first touchdown of his career as a Ram.
After a CU field goal, the Buffs were up 20-10 at the half.
Coming out of the half, CSU seemed to have found a second wind. Big plays by the special teams kept CSU in the game during the third quarter.
After going three and out on their first possession to start the second half, CU punted the ball to CSU punt returner Joe Hansley who returned the ball 74 yards for the touchdown.
After CU was forced to settle for a field goal, CSU punt returner Thomas Coffman got in on the action and returned the punt 84 yards . Moments later, Bibbs scored his second touchdown of the game giving CSU its first lead, 24-23. Bibbs was given more carries after running back Donnell Alexander went down in the first half with an upper body injury, said to be a hand injury after the game.
In the fourth quarter, though, Bibbs made a costly mistake when he fumbled the ball which was recovered by CU and returned for the touchdown, giving CU a 31-26 lead and momentum back in favor of the Buffs.
The Rams would not lead again in the game.
A 75-yard pitch and catch from Wood to Richardson gave CU a 41-27 lead over the Rams after the successful extra point and the icing on the cake.
CU will take the Centennial Cup and year-long bragging rights back to Boulder after the Rams earned both in a win over the Buffs a year ago. CSU hasn’t had back-to-back wins over CU since the 1999 and 2000 seasons, a stat that will remain at least until 2015.
Football Beat Reporter Katie O’Keefe can be reached at email@example.com