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How do we improve in 2014 (Offense)

Discussion in 'Colorado Football Message Board' started by skinsfan55, Nov 26, 2013.

  1. skinsfan55

    skinsfan55 Club Member Club Member

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    Like some of you may remember, I'm pretty new to college football. I'm a lifelong fan of the pro game but never paid much attention to college until this season. I wanted to choose a D1 team to follow and I picked the Buffs. I really want to see the program rebuilt to its former glory, and they had all the pieces it seemed.

    Still, I'm not naive enough to think it'll be an easy process. In the pros it's possible, though difficult, to go from worst to first. In college, it's really not possible. Programs have to be rebuilt slowly. Win or lose against the Utes on Saturday, the Buffaloes have made a big step in the right direction. I think a bowl game is certainly possible next year. Anyway, I thought it'd be a useful exercise to go through the projected depth chart on offense and see what we think about our odds for improving in 2014.
    2014 Projected Offensive Depth ChartClass listed is for 2014
    * Indicates the player has redshirted


    Quarterback

    13- Sefo Liufau (So.)
    5- Connor Wood (*Sr.)
    7- Jordan Gehrke (*So.)

    Cade Apsay looks like a very good recruit for 2014, but there doesn't seem to be a reason not to redshirt him. With Liufau expected to hold the starting job, Gehrke coming off a redshirt year and Wood bringing back his experience as a backup, the QB position looks pretty strong. Sure, it's not great, Liufau needs to continue to improve but this isn't a weak spot on the roster. Is it possible that Wood transfers after losing the starting job? Maybe, but I hope he stays. Sure, he had a rough time this season against top competition, but I think he's a solid backup QB.

    Running Back

    46- Christian Powell (Jr.)
    19- Michael Adkins II (So.)
    26- Tony Jones (*Sr.)

    Donta Abron has fallen off the map, but still... that's three pretty decent running options. Jomon Dotson looks like a strong recruit and could work his way into the lineup as an impact player. I've also heard good things about FB Jordan Murphy who should have the inside track on the starting job next season. I know pistol teams don't often incorporate a fullback, but a good one can be a nice weapon to have. This unit could use some more star power, but honestly, like QB I don't see them as a weakness. I think RB is a position of strength for the Buffs.

    Wide Receiver-

    X
    22- Nelson Spruce (*Jr.)
    87- Tyler McColloch (Sr.)

    Z
    ?
    ?

    H
    3- DD Goodson (Sr.)
    2- Devin Ross (So.)

    Folks, I love Paul Richardson, but he's gone. I can't think of a single reason he would come back to Boulder. If by some miracle he does, I'll be tickled pink, but it's probably a more useful exercise to plan on him turning pro. Hopefully a successful pro career will help sell the program to young recruits.

    Anyway, in HCMM's system it seems like the X position is for possession types, Z is for speed oriented guys who stretch the field. H seems to be a slot position. Obviously the situation here is not ideal. I like Nelson Spruce a lot, but if he's out #1 receiving threat next year, we'll be hard pressed to match this season's win total. It's really going to come down to someone stepping up in a big way and claiming that Z spot. Freshman receivers Bryce Bobo, Elijah Dunston and Jeff Thomas were all decent recruits last year who could be in the mix. So far this season we haven't been able to recruit a single WR, but Coach Mac II and his staff have been pounding the pavement and there's a couple JUCO names in the mix. That might be the best route since Bobo, Dunston and Thomas seem to lack elite speed and may be better suited to the X position.

    Goodson and Ross seem like good fits in the slot. They're small, quick and capable of racking up YAC.

    Tight End-

    88- Kyle Slavin (*Jr.)
    81- Sean Irwin (*So.)

    This position needs some work. HCMM seems to like to use the tight end position, as Ryan Otten was a big weapon for him at SJSU. Unfortunately there doesn't seem to be a lot of talent here. Freshman recruit Dylan Keeney is going to need to put on some weight to play in the Pac-12. I would be surprised if he doesn't redshirt. There are some interesting JUCO names for possible TE's next season. That's the direction I would go in. Having a good tight end can he a huge weapon for young quarterbacks. Without PRich around, Sefo is going to need a big target. A strong TE can keep drives moving and keep the defense off the field. This is a major weakness for Colorado.

    Offensive Line-

    Outside

    77- Stephanie Nembot (*Jr.)
    79- Johnathan Huckins (*Fr.)

    Inside

    52- Daniel Munyer (*Sr.)
    54- Kaiwi Crabb (*Sr.)
    64- Brad Cotner (*Jr.)
    74- Alex Kelley (*So.)

    I separated this list into outside and inside because I think there's going to be a lot of movement this offseason. Losing Jack Harris and Gus Handler is going to be really tough, but I think this can still be a decent line. Apparently there's a slim chance that Harris could be back since he lost two seasons due to injury, but I wouldn't bank on it. Baring the unexpected I would put Nembot at LT and Munyer at C. Huckins was the only Freshman recruit to make the depth chart at o-line but he hasn't played and his redshirt remains in tact. Crabb looks strong and should hold the LG spot down. That means we've got some interesting decisions to make on the right side. Huckins, Gunnar Graham or Sam Kronshage could come in and claim the RT spot, but there's some strong true freshman candidates on the way in 2014. HCMM has made offensive line a recruiting priority, which makes me feel like my trust in him is being validated. Strong offensive line play is critical to a team's success and I think this could be a good unit. Nembot is a team leader and would be well placed at LT. Munyer is another leader who would be a strong center to help make adjustments and Crabb has had a strong season. IMO this might be Colorado's strongest position. Those three guys are Pac-12 talent IMO.

    -----

    Okay, so I went pretty shallow as far as the depth chart is concerned. But what do you think? Did I miss anyone? Overlook anything major? Do you have different thoughts about the team?
     
    TimmyDUBs and aik like this.
  2. onealcd

    onealcd Club Member Club Member

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    It all comes down to the offensive line. We need more push and better protection or it doesn't matter what athletes we have on the outside and in the backfield. I actually think we have pretty good athletes at wide receiver but they are small. Running back should be probably our best position on the team next year with Dotson coming in. Playcalling also needs to be picked up to become more explosive with less protecting of Sefo.
     
  3. J.R. Ewing

    J.R. Ewing Club Member Club Member

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    We'll be fine so long as we don't have to throw the ball to a receiver or tight end.
     
  4. onealcd

    onealcd Club Member Club Member

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    Really wish Parsons didn't decommit and go to Vandy. That would have helped tremendously.
     
  5. buffedup

    buffedup Cooler than a Popsicle Stand. Club Member

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    We as fans won't do anything. The coaches will work with the players in spring ball to continue to develop the offense as their system gets fully integrated. PRich will be a huge loss, but I think overall the production will increase with offensive continuity, which these players haven't had since 2005.
     
  6. Shldr2Shldr

    Shldr2Shldr Club Member Club Member

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    Jeff thomas will likely make a big contribution at WR assuming he is back and ready to go.
     
  7. J.R. Ewing

    J.R. Ewing Club Member Club Member

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    People seem to have a lot of faith that Jeff Thomas will be a starting Pac-12 level WR next September. I can't think of any information I've heard to support that.
     
    skinsfan55 likes this.
  8. TDbuff

    TDbuff Club Member Club Member

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    Better line play, and more threats in the passing game. They can get by without Prich and could be a little better if they can get solid play from multiple WR's and maybe a TE. If Spruce is the best/only receiving option next year, it'll be rough.
     
  9. skinsfan55

    skinsfan55 Club Member Club Member

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    Seems like the new staff kinda bungled that one. Maybe they saw something they didn't like... I dunno... but having a top in-state player would have been pretty sweet. He was even a vocal CU recruiter to other HS stars.

    I'm with you. Obviously I hope Thomas is awesome for the Buffs, but he's not that fast and it seems like he's got some issues to work out. He had a couple decent springs, but it seems like a longshot for him to come in and be a big contributor.
     
  10. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    This comes down to the OL. We desperately need them to turn the corner.

    With good OL play, we'll have a good offense. Adkins, Powell and Jones will progress as RBs. Sefo will be a very efficient QB.

    But we don't have the kinds of players who are going to make something happen with a mediocre OL.
     
  11. sliderNcider

    sliderNcider MacLovin Club Member

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    Better run game. I don't think we'll be good enough at WR or TE to scare anyone. Also when we get in the redzone, score TD's
     
  12. BuffClass90

    BuffClass90 Banned BANNED

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    The QB, RB and WRs are decent to good but young. If we had a functional O line, this can be a fairly good offense. Not holding my breath though as the O line has sucked for so many years I have trouble remembering the last good O line we had.
     
  13. CUFan

    CUFan Welcome back Club Member

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    Better OL and DL play first and foremost. Need receiving threats at WR and TE. Need corners who can cover.

    I'm really hoping we succeed with the KSjuco strategy and upgrade our talent quickly. It seems we could be pretty darn young again next year, especially if we lose Harris and Prich.

    I'm sick of losing. Maybe we should look into a good steroid program as well.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  14. KingPants

    KingPants Club Member Club Member

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    No offense to the guy, but Handler gone is addition by subtraction in my book. He just could not hold position against anyone with any ability.
     
  15. J.R. Ewing

    J.R. Ewing Club Member Club Member

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    If we can't upgrade Handler, we'll be in deep trouble. That offense will go nowhere.
     
  16. BuffClass90

    BuffClass90 Banned BANNED

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    What concerns me is Handler won the job, so the staff thinks he's the best player. Yikes!!!
     
  17. Quattro

    Quattro Banned BANNED Club Member

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    Because of depth issues, not because Handler was the best center. Munyer should be the center, but with Irwin getting hurt and others not being ready along with our starting LT and LG leaving Munyer was forced back to guard instead of center.
     
  18. schubeal

    schubeal Club Member Club Member

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    It will all come down to how this recruiting class closes out. If we land a JC guy to compete with Jeromy Irwin at LT and a couple of speedy freshman then I think the offense will have some potential.

    If Nembot is the starting LT I will be very afraid for this team in Pac-12 play. He looks the part but is still far too inconsistent in pass protection.
     
  19. Quattro

    Quattro Banned BANNED Club Member

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    Nembot isn't even in talks to play LT at this point
     
  20. schubeal

    schubeal Club Member Club Member

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    OP seemed to think he was. Figured that notion should be crushed.
     
  21. Quattro

    Quattro Banned BANNED Club Member

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    Yeah, it should

    LT - Irwin/JUCO guy
    LG - Crabb
    C - Munyer
    RG - Irwin/Huckins???
    RT - Nembot
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2013
  22. sliderNcider

    sliderNcider MacLovin Club Member

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    Crabb, Munyer, and Nembot are all but locks to start
     
  23. Quattro

    Quattro Banned BANNED Club Member

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    How in the hell didn't I put two of them in after talking about one of them
     
  24. aik

    aik Club Member Club Member

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    The line options will change in a good way if we can get a Juco to man the left side. Crabb and Jeromy Irwin (boy, do I hope he's healthy) are options at LG, but I think Crabb may be suited to play center with Munyer staying at RG unless Crabb has an injury. Irwin could play LG or LT depending on where the hypothetical Juco plays. For experience's sake I wouldn't mind Jack Harris getting his additional medical year but it feels like he was a Bill Mallory recruit so he's probably moving on. The need is to get at least one guy who can play immediately as Mustoe's development will be hindered further by his injury, and he hasn't looked near ready to play significant snaps at any point he's been on the field.

    Best case could look something like this left to right: Irwin-Juco (please be H. Lousi)-Crabb-Munyer-Nembot. In this case Crabb and Munyer could also be backups for each other. The veterans likely to provide depth would be Cotner and Kelley inside, Mustoe outside. Then we have five redshirt freshmen who could crack the two-deep this spring with a strong performance: Kronshage and Graham outside, Kough and Sutton inside, and Huckins who has been mentioned as a possibility at any number of spots on the line. These are good numbers to have which should keep all of our true freshmen including Lisella from being forced into action. An offseason in Forman's program and with addtional coaching and there is potential for gradual improvement as we've seen from this position group on the field this year.
     
  25. patebuff

    patebuff Downgraded to half a star Club Member

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    Our Oline is dependent on getting 1-2 JUCO's in the program. If that doesn't happen, I really feel like we are in big trouble on the Oline, which we probably are anyways. Getting Irwin back to slide into the LT or one of the G positions will help, but we know nothing about the redshirt freshman.

    We are after a few JUCO receivers so hopefully we can get one to commit. One of the JUCO WR could be a potential star, but seems to have a lot of suitors. I like Jeff Thomas and am not worried about what he will do on the field. Off the filed might be a different story. If we can get the Lee kid, I would really like to see him in a WR slot position. That guy has electric potential and we need that.

    We can really speed this up with 4-5 JUCO's, that from what I can see, can come in a compete on day one. That will be key to this team in 2014.

    Can't even talk about TE as we are in big trouble there.
     
  26. 96 Buff

    96 Buff Resident Commie Bastard Club Member Junta Member

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    Score more points.
     
  27. SBG

    SBG Formerly known as EFNMB Club Member Junta Member

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    With short WRs and no TE our red zone efficiency is going to get a lot worse before it gets better. I think the DL will be improved, but we still have glaring holes at safety and LB. The OL can't get any worse, can it?
     
  28. Darth Snow

    Darth Snow Hawaiian Buffalo Club Member Junta Member

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    find a p12 TE. find enough WR to keep McCullough off the field. Improve the OL.
     
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  29. buffs233

    buffs233 John Henderson's Sock

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    Without Richardson, we don't and the offense is even worse. With P-Rich, good chance this team would have have beaten the FCS foe, CSU and one PAC 12 team in 2012, exact same as this year.
     
  30. 89BUFF89

    89BUFF89 Well-Known Member

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    munyer at 'C' is an instant upgrade assuming he stays there. nembot needs to turn the corner and be more consistent or it will be another long year for the OL. you can cover up one weak link with a te or back helping but not two. hope sefo can improve his mobility and deep ball. young wr need to step-up.
     

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