Friday Fast Facts – Bye Week Edition

Washington a heavy favorite at home this weekend over Arizona State … Pac-12 Weekend television schedule

With four Pac-12 teams idle – Colorado, UCLA, Cal and Utah – there are only four games this weekend involving Pac-12 teams.

The lines from 5Dimes

— USC – a 3.5-point favorite at home against Washington State – Friday, 8:30 p.m., MT, ESPN … USC leads the series, 58-10-4, though Washington State won at home last season, 30-27

— Oregon State – a 6.0-point underdog at home against Arizona – Saturday, 2:00 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks … Arizona leads the series, 23-15-1, including a win at home last fall, 49-28

— No. 20 Oregon – a 2.0-point underdog at home against No. 7 Stanford – Saturday, 6:00 p.m., MT, ABC … Stanford leads the series, 48-32-1, including a 49-7 rout at home in 2017

— No. 10 Washington – a 17-point favorite at home against Arizona State – Saturday, 8:30 p.m., MT, ESPN … Arizona State leads the series, 19-16, including a 13-7 upset win last season


Big Picture

— Colorado is 3-0 to start the 2018 season, opening 3-0 for the 42nd time in its history (129 seasons), and is 3-0 in back-to-back seasons for the first time since 1994-95;

Cautionary tale … the last two time the Buffs opened the season 3-0 (2008; 2017), Colorado finished with a 5-7 record;

— Colorado is 703-501-36 all-time (.581). The Buffs are 25th in all-time victories; 36th in all-time winning percentage;

— Against New Hampshire the Buffs broke a September 15th jinx, having gone 0-6 all-time on that date. Some of the unfortunate results: 1984, Buffs fall on the road, 27-20, to Oregon (forever remembered by CU fans as the “Ed Reinhardt game“); 1990, CU falls, 23-22, to Illinois, in the Buffs’ only loss in the national championship season; 2007, in the first-ever “blackout” game, the Buffs fell to Florida State, 16-6; 2012, in one of the lowest moments in recent CU history, the Buffs were annihilated on the road by Fresno State, 69-14;

— Under Mike MacIntyre, Colorado is 1-4 when coming off of a bye week. In the four losses, the Buffs haven’t looked particularly sharp: 2013 – Oregon State (44-17); 2014 – USC (56-28) and Oregon (44-10); 2015 – none; and 2017 – Utah (31-13). On the glass half-full side, the lone victory by CU under Mike MacIntyre coming off of a bye week came against next weekend’s opponent, UCLA. The Buffs hosted the Bruins on a Thursday night game after a bye week in 2016, coming away with a 20-10 victory aided by an Isaiah Oliver punt return for a touchdown to seal the win.


Statistically speaking

— The Buffs are 3-for-3 on opening drives thus far this season, scoring touchdowns against CSU, Nebraska and New Hampshire;

–This is just the fifth season in CU history the Buffs have scored 30 or more points in each of the first three games of the season (joining 1896, 1923, 1993 and 1995) … The New Hampshire game represented just the fifth time under MacIntyre CU rushed for over 300 yards (4-1 record);

— Colorado is ranked in the top 20 nationally in several categories: kickoff returns (16th – 27.33 yards per return); turnover margin (18th – +1.00/game); team passing efficiency (20th – 167.07); sacks (14th – 3.33/game); and red zone defense (12th – .600);

— In addition to the above categories, Colorado is ranked in the top three in the Pac-12 conference in several other categories, including scoring offense (41.0/game); and rushing offense (204.3 yards/game);

— The Buffs are 21-8 under Mike MacIntyre in games in which they score at least 30 points.


Player Notes

— Quarterback Steven Montez remains highly ranked in a number of categories: completion percentage (8th – .734); passing yards (16th – 855 yards); passing efficiency (18th – 173.6); and total offense (28th – 294.0 yards/game);

— Wide receiver Laviska Shenault is first in the nation in receiving yards per game (151.7); third in the nation in receiving yards (455 yards); fourth in receptions per game (8.7); and thirteenth in the nation in all-purpose yards (155.0 yards/game);

— Running back Travon McMillian is second in the Pac-12 (26th in the nation) in rushing yards per game (96.7 yards/game);

Ronnie Blackmon is third in the Pac-12 (29th in the nation) in punt return average (10.9 yards/return);

— Seven players have been selected as captains for this season: linebacker Rick Gamboa (who was also a captain last year); receivers Kabion Ento, Jay MacIntyre and Juwann Winfree; safety Nick Fisher; offensive tackle Aaron Haigler; and punter Alex Kinney. Haigler is a junior – the other six are seniors.


Pac-12 Notes

— There are 34 FBS teams that remain undefeated, with 28 teams posting a 3-0 mark. Of those 28, five are from the Pac-12 (only the SEC, with six, has more);

— Only three teams from the Pac-12 were ranked in the fourth week of the Associated Press poll … No. 7 Stanford … No. 10 Washington … and No. 20 Oregon, with USC and Arizona State dropping out. Five Pac-12 teams were on the list of teams receiving votes: No. 29 Colorado; No. 30 California; No. 35 Arizona State; No. 36 Utah and No. 40 Washington State;

— In addition to Laviska Shenault leading the nation in receiving yards, the Pac-12 has one other national leaders. Washington State quarterback Gardner Minshaw II leads the nation in completions per game (39.0), passing yards per game (401.), and total offense (411.0 yards/game);

— A quirky stat … there were three kickoff returns for touchdowns by FBS teams last weekend … all three by Pac-12 teams (Arizona; Cal; and Washington State);

— The Pac-12 had 211 former players listed on NFL Opening Day rosters, including seven quarterbacks … more than any other conference;

— In team statistics, Utah leads the nation in passing yards allowed (93.0 yards/game) and total defense (205.7 yards/game); Stanford leads the country in scoring defense (7.7 points per game); while Washington State leads in net punting (47.75 yards/punt).


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