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bsn BSN: Three Things: Did the Buffs lose more than they gained in Michigan?

Discussion in 'CU Buffs Newsroom' started by RSSBot, Sep 19, 2016.

  1. RSSBot

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    No doubt the Colorado Buffaloes showed up in the first quarter at Michigan against the fourth-ranked Wolverines. It quickly ended for the upset-seeking Buffaloes. What CU gained in the game is confidence and the knowledge that they can go toe-to-toe with the most talented teams in the country; what the Buffs lost, however, could cost them dearly in the near future.

    Health


    As already reported on BSN Denver, kicker Diego Gonzalez and linebacker Derek McCartney will miss the remainder of the 2016 season with injuries. Meanwhile, quarterback Sefo Liufau looks to be not seriously hurt but could miss some more time after exited the Michigan game in the third quarter.

    Another two key guys that have been failed to be brought to big attention are center Alex Kelley and receiver Shay Fields. Kelley missed the Idaho State game was hard to find on the field for the second half against the Wolverines. Fields, on the other hand, was seen limping at times.

    Obviously losing Gonzalez really hurts; he was one of this analyst’s keys to the year. His confidence was on display the first two games of the year as he pounded the pigskin through the posts. Colorado’s struggle to put points on the board in the red zone last year was expected to improve this season by way of Gonzalez’ foot. His loss means Chris Graham will be the place kicker. Graham a redshirt junior from Burlingame, Calif. competed and lost to Gonzalez for the job ahead of the 2015 season, but he did remain the team’s kickoff man.

    The McCartney loss isn’t a death blow either as the Buffs are decently deep at his outside linebacking position. Honestly, it was one of the only spots on the field that CU could lose a guy and still skate by. Yet, there is still a difference. McCartney’s absence in the second half in Ann Arbor led to a clear difference in the UM run game. He was a leader and a veteran the defense desperately counted on up front.

    If Liufau is a no go, the Buffs’ other options are redshirt freshman Steven Montez or redshirt senior Jordan Gehrke. Both have played this season and Montez has won the backup job but the young gunslinger got a bit banged up at the Big House. Neither is an ideal player to start against an angry Oregon Ducks team at home.

    Special Teams


    W.T.T.F. (welcome to the fight) is the team’s motto this year. I guess the special team’s unit didn’t get the message because it was more like W.T.F.

    Unranked teams cannot make mistakes on the road when playing ranked opponents. Not once, not twice, not three times, but four times did the special teams make costly mistakes. The Buffs almost got away with the first two too, but the last two really put the nail in the coffin that was their upset bid.

    Without the special team’s blunders, the score could’ve easily been 24-0 after one-quarter. Instead Michigan had momentum and Colorado had an unreliable unit. The two blocked punts, one missed field goal, one returned punt for a touchdown against and a handful of other lackluster punts are the kinds of things that cost you big time in games like this, and it did.

    Fast start, slow finish


    Great teams finish, no matter how they start, Colorado is not yet a great team. Michigan nevertheless might be a great team.

    Somehow not being deterred once down 21-7 the Wolverines rallied and almost covered the 20 point spread. Perhaps it helps that it should’ve been 24-0 but it was just as much about the Buffs. CU got tired as the game dragged along. Maybe it was a lack of depth or even Big Ten Speed but the Buffs were getting beat to the outside, missing tackles and making mistakes as the game wore on. Those are things that need to change if the team wants to reach their lofty goals. Of course, the injuries mentioned above hurt, but it once again proves the lack of depth. The mentality, though, is clearly different. They now need four quarters of physicality to back it up.

    Jake Shapiro
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