But as of right now, I'm finding myself being able to to draw too many similarities between inefficiencies this year that also plagued the 2015 team. I know I'm starting to sound like a broken record player here, but these run plays that the offense has been running are starting to become appalling. After the loss at Michigan, in which the team converted just one third down, coach Mac said that the offense had way too many second/third-and-longs. Long story short, I've noticed that the Buffs are not looking good on first down. I'll limit this criticism to the team's losses at USC as well as the Michigan. CU vs. Michigan on first down: Q1: (excluding a 50-yard bomb to Shay Fields) 9 first down plays, net gain of 25 yards Q2: 7 first down plays, net gain of 3 yards Q3: (excluding a 70-yard TD pass to Shay Fields, Jr.) 5 first down plays, net gain of 9 yards Q4: 5 first down plays, net gain of 3 yards The loss at USC was abysmal too in terms of the offense's production on first down. Here's a quarter by quarter breakdown. Q1: 8 first down plays, net gain of 11 yards Q2: 6 first down plays, net gain of 12 yards Q3 (excluding the 67-yard trick play TD from Bobo to Lindsay, which was on 1st down) 6 first down plays, net gain of 18 yards Q4: (the best quarter for the team in terms of 1st down efficiency) 8 first down plays, net gain of 73 yards So to come full circle...excluding the big trick play TD pass, on 1st down during the game, the Buffs ran 28 plays for 114 yards, or 4.07 yards per play. Now hold on a second...because 4 yards per play sounds pretty good. But let's not fall for that distorted stat. If we take away two big fourth quarter plays, a 37-yard rush by Lindsay and a 21-yard pass to Bryce Bobo, the Buffs ran 26 first down plays and gained 56 yards for a 2.23 yards per play average. That is downright awful! At least in my mind this problem is due to these dumbass play calls in regards to the run game. Personally, I think that the team needs to utilize fullbacks in a better way. The Buffs have in George Frazier a suitable candidate to lead block for Lindsay and Evans. Even though he's listed as a tight end on CUBuffs, Frazier is the starting fullback on this team. That said, he really doesn't see a lot of action. Partly because the Buffs are too handcuffed to the shotgun formation. Adding an occasional regular and offset I formation could be helpful. Getting back to the constant second/third-and-long issue, a big reason for that are these ineffective run plays on first down. Phillip Lindsay is 5'8" and a powerful running back for his size. However, he can't be expected to burst through an enemy team's front seven with no lead blocker. Things need to change...better play calling is how that change begins.