This yearly matchup, the Rocky Mountain Showdown, has traditionally been a hard fought tough game. Last years game went into overtime with CU winning the game 31-28. This being Dan Hawkins third year and his improvement from year one to year two was 2-10 in year one and then in year two the team went 6-6 before losing to Alabam in the Independence Bowl. Year three could be the start of something very good for the Buffs, and expect to compete to be near the top of the Big XII North.
Offense: The Buffs will be lead by the coaches son third year sophomore Cody Hawkins who is the quarterback and is entering in his second year as a starter. Hawkins had a breakout year by passing over 3,000 yards and 22 touchdowns and should be even better in his third year as a starter. With six returning startings back on the team there should be more efficiency for the 2008 campaign. The top returning running back is Demetrius Sumler who played sparingly last year, and will be battling Brian Lockridge for playing time this upcoming season. As for the receiving crew the Buffalos have multiple receivers returning which should help out the passing game that emerged last season. Last season the team averaged a solid 27 per game, and they look to be more consistent this year with their scoring offense.
Top Returning Offensive Players
|Cody Hawkins QB 3,015 yards 56% 22 TD 17 INT|
|Demetrius Sumler RB 335 Yards 4 TD|
|Brian Lockridge RB 205 Yards 1 TD|
Scotty McKnight WR 555 Yards 4 TD
The Buffalo defense returns eight starters and should improve on their performance from last year where they gave up 29 points per game. The experience of these players being together should increase production. Colorado plays a basic 4-3 defense and gave up 389 yards per game and was 64th nationally in that category. The best part of their defense was their rushing attack where they were ranked 31st nationally, but were 103rd nationally. Their turnover margin needs to improve which was a -.33 per game, and that goes against the offense and defense. As it goes for the defensive the Buffs they had 21 turnovers through either fumbles or interceptions, which is not too bad. The defense will need to improve their rush defense, especially against the Rams who have two good backs in Kyle Bell and Gatrell Johnson III.
This is a tough one because the last six games have been decided by 4.1 points with Colorado winning four of those matchups. Both teams always play each other tought because this is a rival game, but look for this to be the same with the team that has the ball last will win. The edge goes to the Buffs because they return their starting quarterback.