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CU Questions going into the season - the BNG take.

Discussion in 'Colorado Football Message Board' started by BlackNGold, Aug 26, 2014.

  1. BlackNGold

    BlackNGold Club Member Club Member

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    Unfortunately CU has questions about the team all over the place and really good teams go into the season with only one or two questions to be resolved. CU is just not to that point yet.

    Offense -

    QB - Sefo showed last season that he he could play at this level. Not a star level but adequate (hey he was a true frosh so that is pretty good). The question is can he take another step up in his performance. He needs to be quicker in his progressions. Needs to improve on 3rd down conversions. He is no mobile in the sense he is a threat to make yards rushing but he does have the ability to move out of the pocket to avoid the rush. As the field gets shorter his completion percentage goes down - probably a direct result of not have enough room for PRich to work. That is the big question is how will he do without PRich. Also his stats benefited to some extent from second half going against second teamers and less intensity - completion percentage was 10% higher in the second half of games. He was good at avoiding the INT.

    RB - There are a lot of bodies but no standout. I personally would like the coaches to go with a single back for most of the time instead of the constant rotation to see who is hot. Most backs want a lot of carries to get in the grove. The biggest issue is not getting tough yards when needed. CU was less than 50% on converting on 3rd and short when they ran the ball. Overall CU did not have a running game that teams had to worry about defending. The question is can the running game improve to the point that defenses have to be more honest especially on 3rd down.

    Offensive Line - Big question to me - how will the performance be at Left Tackle. The left tackle is the most important position on the Oline and CU's best lineman last year was at that position. Whoever mans that position will have precious little experience there. I expect other teams to attack there. The line overall is relatively experienced but still has some question marks. The right side should be pretty good blocking for the run - I am hoping that Nembot takes the next step in pass blocking - he has to let the play come to him a little more. Sometimes I think he should of been on the Dline. Left tackle will be key - will the line be better than last year...not sure.

    WRs - Once again a lot of bodies but will someone break out of the pack to actually cause the defenses some issues. We all know that Spruce is a solid receiver but guys like him are also more effective when there is a speed receiver on the outside that takes the other teams' #1 corner. Of course the big question is - How effective will the WR position be without PRich who accounted for ~40% of the receiving yards last year? It will be great if one of the young guys can show that he has speed and can catch the ball.

    TE - The big question here is will the offense actually use the TE position. I don't think CU has used the TE in the passing game very much. I think Irwin and Slavin are okay,

    Offense overall - Will the offense be able to move the chains more (less 3 and outs), perform better in the red zone and scored more points? The offense has to control the ball more to keep the defense off the field.


    Defense -

    DL - Well the line is already suffering with injuries and academic casualties. The line last year did not get much pressure (some of that is scheme design IMO). With CU facing so many teams that can attack with the pass this is one of the scariest situations for me. The Big question - can some of the young guys step up to provide depth and a little talent along the front line. CU is fairly small in the line after Tupou and can wear down without some substitutions.

    LBs - Will quality depth emerge for this position. Brady Daigh provides a little depth. I also worry about size at this position. Rippy should have every opportunity to show if he can emerge as an LB.

    CBs - Probably the strength of the defense. I think these guys got a bad rap last year - to me the problem was two fold. Lack of pressure up front gave QBs all day to pass which is tough for any db and also the DBs were forced fill in against the run. Big question - can the CB get more INTs. Last year CU only had 10 interceptions.

    S - Injuries are impacting this area that already had some depth issues. Question - Is Evan White ready to play? He might be needed.

    Defense overall - Can CU do more attacking with their defense to disrupt the other teams offense a little more? It has never been Baer's style to attack on defense. Maybe it is time to change.

    Special Teams -

    Kicking and Punting - probably the highlight of the team O'Neill is a good punter and Oliver is solid as a place kicker. Question is on the Kickoffs - can CU get more kickoffs in for TBs? Too many times last year CU gave up a big KO return that gave the other good field position.

    Return game - Can a real returner emerge? The lineback returning kickoffs is not inspiring. CU did not flip the field enough in the return game. It needs to improve. CU only returned 9 punts all year for a 5 yard average.

    Overall keys for the Buffs - The offense has to have more drives - this will improve field position for the defense and also result in a few more scores for the offense. The defense needs more pressure on the QB. Buffs also need to force more turnovers.

    There you have it!

    Kick coverage -
     
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  2. White_Rabbit

    White_Rabbit Club Member Club Member

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    eagerly awaiting tini tearing every negative point apart with factual looking opinions!
     
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  3. CUFan

    CUFan Welcome back Club Member

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    I'd like to see a primary back as well. I subscribe to the theory that they need more carries to get in the groove. I think the running game is the key to this year. If it's not a lot better, then we may be in trouble.


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  4. FlatironsBuff

    FlatironsBuff Club Member Club Member

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    I hope the OL is much better, which should make the backs look a ton better (even if they were the same, which I don't think they are)
     
  5. BlackNGold

    BlackNGold Club Member Club Member

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    I think the running game has to be effective in short yardage situations. Last year too many time when it was 3rd and short we came up empty. Of course running T Jones up the middle in that situation is not ideal but it happened with the big backs also.
     
  6. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    Somehow we've been beating CSU at close to the normal rate despite them having the better run game in recent years.

    Friday, I believe the big key for the Buffs is to win the line of scrimmage and sustain drives on the ground. A pass happy shootout plays to their strengths, not ours.

    For the season, we're so young and have so many new starters that I don't really know what to expect. Does a weakness mean "mediocre" or does it mean "butt awful" with this year's squad? Do we have enough playmakers? Will the OL perform? Will Sefo avoid a sophomore slump?

    Things I like about this team:

    Defense seems to have playmakers on every level. On the line, we've got Tupou. At the 2nd level, we've got Gillam. In the secondary, we've got Henderson. Then there are a number of guys (Chido, KO, KC, etc.) that could very well bust out as playmakers this season.

    Offense looks less dynamic, but has the potential to be very efficient. I think I like our OL. We've got a gamer at QB who brings toughness and smarts. Spruce is a very good WR who is like a coach on the field. Irwin is a mauler as a blocker at TE but not a "stretch the field" guy. Powell is a bruiser at RB. There's potential for playmakers that change the game, too. Deuce is always a threat to take it to the house. With Bobo, slant patterns seem to be the bread & butter but he might also be another Simas on the deep balls. Fields is dynamic, but young. Same with Lee and Dunston. Adkins and Lindsay are tough and can outrun a defense. So much potential, but it might be a year away. No one I mentioned for the offense is a senior.

    Lot of words I just posted that pretty much amount to: "Not there yet, but will be fun to see how it develops."
     
  7. Shldr2Shldr

    Shldr2Shldr Club Member Club Member

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    appreciate the TL:DR version
     
  8. VCBuff

    VCBuff Active Member

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    CU lost by an average of about 29 points last year: 47-18.

    They could narrow that gap by 3 TD's and see no improvement in the W/L column.

    I am just looking for clear improvement that keeps me invested beyond the 3rd week of the conference schedule and gives them something to sell to recruits.
     
  9. FlatironsBuff

    FlatironsBuff Club Member Club Member

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    In this example, we would have beat Utah, so yes, one more win in the win column.

    I think that with a better OL and more good RB options, that will shorten the games, give our defense more rest, and more scoring opportunities. So yes, give CU 7 to 10 more points a game because we can control the clock better and score a few more times a game, plus give the other team 5 to 10 less minutes on offense and cut them back 2 to 3 scores, and this is a much different season.

    Just longer drives and a few more points by CU changes so much. More encouragement of success in time of the offense on the field, more tangible results on the scoreboard... that is huge. But just as huge is a better rested defense and less opportunities on the other team (and if not wildly ahead in the scoring, more pressure to perform).

    I cannot wait to see how the team grows this year. Too bad ASU and Hawaii are the way they are, as the extra week could help CU more I think. Both teams grow in the extra week, but I think CU would grow more, just with less coaching and player continuity.
     
  10. Swish

    Swish Half a bubble off Club Member

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    Exactly how I see it. Letting blind faith rule the moment again, I think we will control the line this year and that will result in the win. I think Adkins could be a standout for us this season if they get him enough carries.

    I also think turnovers could be a big factor in this years RMS. I think we will get some pressure on Grayson this year and he will throw some to that good looking secondary of ours. This could be the type of game where Crawley breaks out.

    The Lammies had a good season last year but they lost too much. Hart will be a good player for them this season, if he stays healthy and has a line. I don't think he will be a big factor in this game.

    Finally, the staff needs to pull out all the stops with who plays. If someone can get pressure on the QB, disrupt that backfield, get behind their secondary - they need to be on that field. Even if it means burning a shirt they were hoping to preserve.

    Drunk on Kool-aid here, but I think this game is a springboard to better things. The journey back to relevance begins tomorrow night - I hope.


    Forgot to add my BDC headline Saturday morning - "Buff Trounce Hapless Rams"
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2014
  11. WizzersGhost

    WizzersGhost Banned BANNED

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    My take:

    QB: Sefo is bigger, stronger and runs more compactly, with purpose. His paases are quicker to target,short to intermediate, although his deep pattern accuracy can improve .He has shown a knack for feeling the rush and getting rid of the ball without taking the sack. This year he will have bigger book on "O"; last year as a FR, he ran only 50-60% of the playbook; this year he will have a much bigger portion to utilize, including some zone-read. Tough, level-headed and a good leader. At back-up, Gehrke has really improved ,but he needs to be more consistent. He could enter games early for a change of pace without the "O" missing a beat.

    OL: Harris was not the best OL last year and Handler was marking time. The OL as a group appears stronger and more athletic, due to a full year under Forman. Not overly large, they appear in great shape and if MM's comment about" lack of lower body strength" was remedied, they should be fine. Left tackle is in good hands with Irwin and there is solid, if not spectacular, PAC 12 level depth at all spots. Interesting how an SEC transfer, annointed the Messiah by this board, has to bide his time and work into the lineup.

    RB: Solid as a group, with Atkins a budding star and Lindsay with true grit. How a soph RB who ran for 530+ yds. in only 8 games, is not considered a standout is beyond me---EB as a frosh had 30 fewer yards in 11 games.

    WR;:First word is Spruce, solid, strong reliable, sneaky fast. Sure everybody else is relatively new, but they appear coached up and there's enough quality available that if someone fails, next man up might be a star. DD has had a full season to finally learn ONE position and Fields and Walker both have enough speed to keep defenses honest. Either of them would have scored on CSU ala PRich, since it wasn't speed that created those openings. Young overall and not yet game tested, won't be able to say after the 1st half of the RMS. Question is: will they make those sticky-fingered catches PRich was noted for?

    TE: Don't know much yet. The playbook didn't emphasize the TE even a little, last year, so who knows? Irwin and Slavin are adequate for what was asked of them. They weren't asked to be deep threats. An open question.

    The offense we see should be improved and better overall, one more year in the system, a stronger OL, solid experienced RBs and QB ,all working with a more extensive playbook; an All Pac 12 possession WR, surrounded by younger faster players, unproven, yes, but not without promise/potential; it just has to be realized. Most of you never saw the '71Buffs' team, a very young bunch---mostly sophs who could not play as FR, all potential and no big stars. That young bunch started the season with wins at LSU and Ohio St., so I can recall when CU potential was realized, so I won't knock this youthful team down because of how they might look to some critical (cynical?) eyes in practice. And as the original Mac told this team: "The mental is to physical, as four is to one." We'll see how mentally prepared and confident they are, but they appear to have overcome the divisive, no-spirit, every-man-for-himself shell shock of WB&Co and play as a team, for each other. Could make all the difference in the world......See "Auburn"...
    D coming later.
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2014
  12. BuffClass90

    BuffClass90 Banned BANNED

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    Echo what lots of people have said. Last year the main problem was the OL. They couldn't move bodies, couldn't protect. That put a tremendous amount of pressure on a very young defense with a new coaching staff.

    The prescription for success hasn't changed in my mind. If the OL can perform adequately, our O will be on the field more and score more, the D will be on the field less giving up fewer points. If this happens consistently, look to knock off ~14 pts off the average loss per game. We have enough athletes on both sides of the ball to make some plays.

    If we have the same OL we've always had, it will be another loooooonng season.
     
  13. DrunkPanda

    DrunkPanda Active Member

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    I'm looking forward to being called a bandwagon fan by him, the first time I say anything negative this season. Anyway, I'm expecting Michael Adkins to emerge as a legitimate Pac 12 starting quality running back this season
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2014
  14. Quattro

    Quattro Banned BANNED Club Member

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    You notice I never said anything?


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  15. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    You've now attained that special, rarified air of getting ripped on based on others speculating about how you might react to something. :lol:
     
  16. Quattro

    Quattro Banned BANNED Club Member

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    JimmyBuff must have got that train rolling


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