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Colorado Daily – USC

October 25th – GameDay!!

K.D. Nixon: “We’re not worried about the opponent. We’re worried about ourselves”

From the Daily Camera … Riding a three-game losing streak, the Buffs have dealt with a rash of injuries, particularly on defense, but the key to turning their season around just might be tightening up the details.

“Honestly, just us,” receiver KD Nixon said this week when asked what issues have been exposed the past two weeks. “Playing as a brotherhood, being more fundamental, being more detailed, not making penalties.

“We’re not worried about the opponent. We’re worried about ourselves. As long as we trust the coaches and stay focused, we can do us.”

… “First of all, you’ve got to believe you can win the game,” Tucker said when asked about the recipe for pulling off an upset win. “That’s first. You have to have a belief; not just hoping, but actually believe.”

From there, the Buffs have to be better at the details: producing takeaways, taking care of the ball, playing well in the red zone and on special teams, etc.

Finally, the Buffs need their best players to be their best players. They need Montez to have a big game. They need Shenault and Nixon and Alex Fontenot to produce on offense. They need Mustafa Johnson, Nate Landman, Delrick Abrams Jr. and Mikial Onu to play well on defense.

Continue reading story here

*Video – Relentless – Episode 3 posted*

From BuffsTV …

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October 24th

… CU in a few minutes … 

Will this be the game CU is able to “run the ball on our terms”?

From CUBuffs.com … Since the day he arrived, Colorado coach Mel Tucker has stressed that he wants the Buffaloes to “run the ball on our terms.”

Slowly but surely, the Buffs have been improving in that area, as they have increased their rushing totals in each of the last three games. Colorado is fourth in the Pac-12 in rushing in conference games, averaging 161 yards per game, with sophomore Alex Fontenot is currently seventh in the league in rushing with 568 yards on 114 carries, .

But the one place the Buffs haven’t been able to pound the ball with authority in recent weeks is where it counts most — inside an opponent’s 20. The Buffs have let some golden red zone opportunities slip away recently, opportunities that might have kept games close.

It’s an area the 3-4 Buffs (1-3 Pac-12) will be aiming to improve Friday when they play host to USC (4-3, 3-1) in a 7 p.m. game at Folsom Field.

 “We’ve gotten to the point where we’ve been able to run the football, and that’s good and we’ve wanted to do that,” Tucker said earlier this week. “We’ve been running the ball efficiently and we’ve been moving the ball in terms of drives and yardage and things like that. It’s just about finishing drives and red zone production.”

Continue reading story here

Buffs hope having home crowd will alleviate false start issues

From the Daily Camera … Among the issues facing the Colorado football team – and there have been many in the past two weeks – is the high volume of false start penalties on offense.

The Buffaloes (3-4, 1-3 Pac-12) were hit with seven false start penalties in a 45-3 loss at Oregon on Oct. 11 and four more in last Saturday’s 41-10 loss at Washington State.

Center Tim Lynott said the opposing defenses have contributed to those flags. The Buffs use a clap cadence, meaning Lynott will snap the ball when quarterback Steven Montez signals with a clap. A lot of college teams use the clap, which is considered by some to be more effective than an oral cadence, especially in noisy stadiums on the road.

The last two weeks, however, have seen Oregon and Washington State mess that up for the Buffs.

Continue reading story here

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October 23rd

… CU in a few minutes … 

Even while injured, Mustafa Johnson remained a “natural leader”

From the Daily Camera … Mustafa Johnson was injured early during the Buffs’ win at Arizona State Sept. 21 and missed the next two games, a home loss against Arizona and a 42-point thumping at Oregon. In his return last week, Johnson played just 17 snaps at Washington State, by far his lowest total for a full game this season, and was credited with one tackle.

With injuries and roster defections making an already young and inexperienced CU defense even more green — safety Aaron Maddox and linebacker Jacob Callier left the team earlier this week — Johnson’s presence has become even more critical for the Buffs, even if that ankle isn’t quite yet at 100 percent.

“He really has grown in that aspect. I watch him on the sidelines, I listen to him and he’s always coaching the young guys and that’s what’s good,” CU defensive line coach Jimmy Brumbaugh said. “He’s a natural leader. There’s leaders and then there’s guys, he’s natural, because he hasn’t really had anybody in front of him to teach him that. Some guys have that ability to be able to do that and he’s one of those guys. He’s really helped on the sideline.

“And I told him that when I got hurt back in college my coach took me to the side. And I actually had to coach one side of the line and it helped me learn the game. And I see those little innate abilities in him to be able to go and do those things.”

Read the full story here

Buffs making the most of “Ghostbusters” periods

From CUBuffs.com … Colorado coach Mel Tucker calls it the Buffaloes’ “Ghostbuster” period, twice-weekly sessions in which players who aren’t on the two-deep depth chart get a chance for some extra work after regular practices.

Those sessions, the Buffs are learning, are extremely valuable. Players who aren’t getting regular playing time — and aren’t getting scrimmage work with the No. 1 and No. 2 units in practice — get a chance to work in 11-on-11 team drills.

The result is that some of those players get a chance to move up the depth chart and ultimately earn some playing time. Players who have made such a jump this year already include true freshman defensive backs K.J. TrujilloMark Perry and Tarik Luckett; along with junior college transfer linebackers Jamar Montgomery and Jash Allen.

Those are among the players who weren’t on the two-deep when the season began, but are now getting significant playing time and will likely be on the field Friday when the Buffs play host to USC in a 7 p.m. game at Folsom Field (ESPN2).

Trujillo has stepped in as a starter at cornerback the last three games after injuries claimed two Buffs starters. Perry earned his first start last weekend at nickel against Washington State, while Montgomery, Allen and Luckett all earned some playing time against the Cougars.

“These guys were all Ghostbusters,” Tucker said at his weekly Tuesday press conference.

Tucker named the weekly extra periods as a tribute to the late Terry Hoeppner, who gave Tucker his first full-time coaching job at Miami of Ohio in 1999. Hoeppner used that name for the extra periods then, and Tucker brought the designation with him to Boulder.

Continue reading story here

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October 22nd

… CU in a few minutes … 

Mel Tucker’s Tuesday press conference quotes, including discussion of the loss of three players

From CUBuffs.com

Opening Statement
“I’ve been really, really pleased with the focus we’ve had this week. We’re looking forward to a big game at home against a really good opponent, they’ve got a lot of really good players. Our guys have been really focused coming off a couple of really tough losses, just really taking a hard look at ourselves and figuring out what we need to do to get things figured out. Our guys are really getting after it, our coaches are coaching really hard trying to get guys better, get them more disciplined, get better execution. We actually had our highest output on our GPS units yesterday. That was the highest we’ve had in any practice this season. We actually had to back them down today a little bit just to make sure they’re fresh and ready for the game. And that shows me a lot about our guys and their commitment to reaching their full potential and getting the job done. That’s what we’ve asked of our guys, we’re going to continue to challenge them.

Coaches are going to continue to find ways to get our guys better, get better execution. A big part of it is going to be taking care of the football. Turnover margin is huge, the biggest indicator of winning and losing in college and pro is the turnover margin, and we haven’t been taking care of the ball like we need to and we haven’t taken it away. In the games that we’ve won or we’ve been very close in, we’ve been even or on the plus side of the turnover margin, and in the games that we weren’t in it, one of the factors has been takeaways. We had some officials at practice today to tally up any penalties we have. We had two false starts, we had a defensive off sides, defensive pass interference, and an egregious defensive holding so we called it out and addressed it there with those guys and we’re going to continue to do those types of things to find ways to get everything we can out of this football team.

We had a discipline exercise yesterday after practice of 25 reps, every guy on the squad doing it right. If we didn’t do it right, we didn’t count it but it didn’t go very long because guys got it right. Watching the whole game as a team, continuous copy of offense, defense, and special teams in sequence, it’s good for us so guys get a chance to see what it’s all about, see what the guy next to them is doing. It’s all out there, there’s nowhere to hide. Just be neutral, you see it and acknowledge it and get it fixed.

And so, it’s really good to get back home, our crowds have been strong. We’re one of the few places in America that has it packed out every game and that’s what I remember about this place when I played against the Buffs way back when I was in college. That was my last memory of CU was just seeing a crazy crowd packed in there, 50,000 strong, the noise just never escapes, Ralphie running and a damn good football team out there. That’s what I remember and that’s what it’s been this year. It’s really good for recruiting because that’s what these guys want to see. We’re recruiting against Oregon and the SEC schools and USC and that’s what big time football is all about. That’s what these guys want to be a part of and that’s why we do it. Our crowd and our fans have done a great job this year so I’m really looking forward to getting back out there.”

On What The Film Revealed To Him This Past Week
“We have some repeat offenders in terms of penalties, so you either have to replace them or you’ve got to get them better. It just depends on who’s behind them and who gives you the best chance to get the job done. Also, you see where you’re just really, really close on some things. It’s a game of inches. It’s not just a cliche, it really is. Really close to connecting on a deep ball, where we’ve got a guy beat and we got a good ball and run a good route and we’re just not quite connecting. In this last game, I think we had five missed sacks on guys scot-free, just free runs to the quarterback which you don’t usually get versus the air raid. They’ve had maybe 14 sacks in the past two seasons combined. And we had four missed opportunities on defense to get the ball, to get your hand on the ball or when a balls on the ground. Those are opportunities that can change the game and we have to make those plays. Finishing blocks is big too, finishing blocks and straining a little bit longer, offensive line and receivers to get that block and  spring a guy, to maybe give us a first down or maybe create a third and short. Body language is huge. Staying poised and staying neutral, playing the next play. So there’s a lot of things that are revealed and you just have to point them out and coach them through it. Sometimes they don’t know and then sometimes they don’t know why they don’t know, so that’s level two, and then they don’t know that we know they don’t know, and that’s level three. So you have to coach guys through that and show them this is right and this is wrong. Sometimes you’ve got to ask questions, ‘why did you do that? what did you see?’ and then try to help them help them get better. It’s the same thing with the coaching staff, we look at everything we do as well and think how can we be more efficient, how can we do a better job of coaching, how can we get the message across maybe in a different way? That’s what you have to do. You can’t overlook anything, it all adds up and it’s all important.”

On If The Offense Is Still Searching For An Identity 
“We’ve gotten to the point where we’ve been able to run the football, and that’s good and we’ve wanted to do that. We’ve been running the ball efficiently and we’ve been moving the ball in terms of drives and yardage and things like that. It’s just about finishing drives and redzone production. Our identity needs to be to run the ball on our terms and be able to make explosive plays, take care of the football, and score points. That’s a big part of it and we’re working towards that, obviously we’re not where we need to be right now but we’re working towards it and I expect us to get there at some point.”

On What Kind Of Power He Has Over Play Calls
“I’ve got all types of power, but I really like the way Jay calls games. He does a really good job and he’s got a really good balance, he distributes the ball to guys and gets the ball to our playmakers. He’s always protection conscious with the quarterback and he does a real nice job, same thing with the defense.”

On What He Can Do To Help Quarterback Stephen Montez’s Focus
“Communication, just having a real good relationship with him. Talking to him, listening, and believing in him, showing confidence in him. We coach him hard and coach the details. We don’t sugarcoat anything with any of our players, if it’s good it’s good and if it’s bad it’s bad, there’s really no in between. So, just being honest with him and then making sure the guys around them are doing their job. That’s why I don’t like to make a lot of comments about individual plays right after games because sometimes you don’t really know until you watch the film to see what really happens. So we’ve got to make sure that everyone’s doing their job and supporting him and then obviously he’s got to do a better job and make better decisions and get his job done.”

On Steven Montez’s Confidence After Two Rough Games
“Looks good to me. You can tell when he doesn’t have confidence because you see him all the time. You see these guys every single day, so if a guy is struggling with confidence you can tell, and I haven’t seen that from him. He’s fighting and scrapping, he made plays yesterday and he was making plays today. I saw him throw a ball today and I mean it was a little low, we didn’t catch it, and he says ‘hey man I gotta give you a better ball’, and it was a catchable ball, but to say something like that just tells you a lot about him. Saying let me give you a better ball and give you a better chance to catch it, and the receiver said man it was a good enough ball I’ve just got to make that play. So that’s how you work through it and it’s a challenge and I love it.”

On The Recent CU Players Entering The Transfer Portal
“Well first of all they’re all my guys. They’re all our guys right now and I told them that since day one. Whether I recruited you or not, we’re gonna love you up and run through a wall for you. I don’t think we’ve had that type of issue with new guys versus guys that were here before. We’re all in the same boat. I’ve now parted ways with I think 13 or 14 guys since I got here on December 5. And that’s just a part of it. I wish those guys well and it’s not personal. Everyone wants to make decisions that they think are the best for them and I respect that. And so, with Aaron Maddox, he wanted to red shirt, he expressed the interest of red-shirting, but I couldn’t guarantee him that so consequently he’s in the portal. Same thing with Darrion Jones, he expressed an interest in wanting to redshirt, I can’t guarantee that, so he’s not with us. Jacob Callier, it was just not working out for him here with us and so he’s no longer with us. That’s three guys in a matter of two days. I wish them the best and I’m going to be here for them if they need anything.

This is a great university. This is a great opportunity to get an education from a first class place, a degree from here means a lot and carries a lot of weight in this world. We do a lot of things right around here and we have really good academic support and great counselors, mentors, mental health counseling available for our guys. We have great athletic trainers. We’ve got a new trainer this year from Washington State. We’ve got great equipment guys. We’ve got a couple new equipment guys here from Stanford. We just hired a full time nutritionist for football only to work with our guys. We have an open door policy with our coaching staff, we travel in a first class manner. We got suits for our guys, we check their classes, make sure they’re doing what they’re supposed to do and hold them accountable. We just have really good rapport, we have great communication with our guys. We don’t go over time, our practices start on time and end on time.

Our guys have plenty of time to have balance in there, and whatever they want to do, academics and then have some discretionary time for themselves. We do everything we can for our players on and off the field, but it’s just not for everyone. This is a great place. And when recruiting, we have recruits that are very impressed with what we’re doing and they see the direction that this program is going in. Their parents and their high school coaches see it too. That’s why we’re doing well in recruiting because it’s pretty obvious when you go behind the curtain and get a chance to see what we’re really doing that things are being done the right way and that things are going to be done a certain way here.”

On USC’s Depth
“They got some depth. With good teams, they usually have pretty good depth. A guy goes down and another guy can step in and get the job done. They have that. Everyone we play has good players. We have our fair share of good players as well. Sometimes you see a fourth team running back go in there and he is ripping and running up and down the field. Where did that guy come from? Well that’s recruiting. That is the name of this game. It takes a couple of classes where you can get like that because you can only sign so many guys in one year. Then you also have APR (Academic Progress Rate) issues that have to be accounted for in terms of guys in and out of your program. They obviously have done some good things in recruiting because they have some really good players. They have developed some good players as well as a coaching staff.”

On The Red Zone
“Everything happens quicker in the red zone. You don’t have as much space. The red zone is a special situation. It is like short yardage or goal line (situations). You have red zone patterns on offense and defense. It is different. Most people, in the red zone, love to be able to run it in. Another factor in winning and losing is rushing touchdowns. That is a big factor. On offense you love to be able to run it in. On defense you never want to let them run it in. The percentage of plays you have in the red zone is not as much as other parts of the field. Sometimes you don’t spend as much time on red zone as the other phases. People usually do what they do in the red zone. They may have a little game plan here and there, but it is different. If you are not performing well in the red zone you have to dedicate more time to it and really have to break it down. It is really about execution. Things happen really fast down there. If you can run it in it makes it a lot easier.”

On Production From New Players
Jamar Montgomery has developed to the point where he has earned some playing time. He gets in the game and does a good job on special teams. He made plays for us on defense. Jash Allen has developed. He was one of our best players on the field last week. Same thing with KJ Trujillo. Tarik Luckett was in the game. Mark Perry was in the game. You have to get as many guys ready to play as possible because it is never ending. They don’t stop for anyone. You are going to have injuries. It’s going to be a competition. We’re always evaluating who the guys are that give us the best chance. There are some guys now that were playing more early and they’re not playing as much now because they haven’t performed and someone has passed them up. I learned from Romeo Crennel in NFL and he said, ‘The guys that haven’t proven that they can do it, they have to prove that they can. Some guys that have done it before they have to prove they still can do it. You might have a veteran guy for 12 years but he still has to prove he still can do it. If not get somebody else in there.’ I’ve told players, ‘If you’re not getting it done I want to give somebody else a chance to get it done. I don’t know if they can get it done or not, but I know you can’t. I’m going to give somebody else a chance to get it done. If they can’t get it done then we’ll go to the next guy. You get yourself ready for your next opportunity that comes around.’ That’s why we have to compete. The stronger roster you have, the more depth that you have and the more competition you have on the field. That’s a big part of how you get better because you practice a lot more than you play. When you have depth on your roster and you have really, really good players at every position and you’re out there competing for playing time and just sharpening the saw, that’s how you get better. We have a merit-based deal in terms of playing time. If a guy is showing he can’t get his job done, then there is someone else that you can give a chance. Sometimes you are in a situation where the guy in there gives you your best chance, period. You have to get him better. You talk about the (transfer) portal. You are running into guys that have already been in the portal once. Now what? They are stuck. They have to quit or get better but they aren’t going into the portal again. There are all different types of factors in terms of competition and getting guys better. We talk about drive. That is the beauty of it. The good thing is I don’t have to teach any classes. All I have to do is come in all day every day and do ball and work on these guys. That is why I love it so much. It is a great challenge and a character builder for guys. We had a guy who forgot the jacket to his suit. We had to address that. I told him, ‘If you go to a job interview and forget your jacket that could be the difference between getting that job and not. Let’s learn from it and get better. I will help you get better because we will address it and confront it.’ That is all a part of what we are doing here.”

On The Mindset Of Upsetting The Opponent
“You first of all have to believe you can win the game. You have to have a belief and not just hope. There are certain things you have to do to be able to win any game. You have to take care of the football, take it away, be efficient on early downs on both sides of the ball, convert on third downs, score in the red zone, keep points off the board, and be flawless on special teams. Big time players make big time pays in big games. Your good players have to step up in big games and be good players. They call that competitive greatness. You have to have those things. You can’t get overwhelmed by the other team’s talent or the magnitude of the situation. You never look at the scoreboard. You stay neutral and play the next play. Treat every play as if it has a history and a life of its own.  You grind it out. You have a chance to win the game in the fourth quarter and you make one more play. That is how you get it done.”

Continue reading story here (including quotes from tight end Brady Russell) …

*Video – DL Mustafa Johnson: “I’m ready to get back into it”*

From YouTube, courtesy of BuffStampede.com:

Buffs practicing with a renewed sense of purpose: “They’re sick of losing”

From the Daily Camera … Tucker said he felt “a new sense of purpose” with the Buffs during Monday’s practice as the Buffs tried to put Washington State in the rearview mirror and focus on USC.

“A lot of guys are just, they’re sick of losing, and especially the past two games,” senior center Tim Lynott said. “That’s something that’s not us. That’s not the team we built it to be. We worked our butts off this season, so we shouldn’t be in that position. A lot of guys are trying to strive to improve and step up and whoever needs to step up needs to step up.”

The list of players needing to step up is long, but junior receiver KD Nixon pointed the finger at himself.

“I gotta be the big playmaker,” he said. “I gotta ask for the ball more. I gotta block more. I gotta help other receivers be more comfortable. It’s not (quarterback Steven Montez’s) fault. I’ll always take the blame because I’m a leader of the team. I gotta get everybody to practice better, because that’s where it all starts.”

The Buffs had a good practice Monday, but that’s just a start, Nixon said.

“We did good, but at the same time you’ve got to win the day every day,” he said. “So tomorrow has to be better than today.”

Continue reading story here

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October 21st

… CU in a few minutes … 

Mel Tucker: “We have a very unselfish football team. I haven’t seen any finger pointing”

From CUBuffs.com … With the Colorado Buffaloes beginning a short week of preparation — they play host to USC Friday in a 7 p.m. game at Folsom Field — coach Mel Tucker shook up the routine a little on Sunday.

Instead of position groups watching film separately with their respective coaches, Tucker gathered the entire team together and they watched Saturday’s 41-10 loss to Washington State from beginning to end.

“I wanted everyone to see what everyone was doing and what the issues were in the game,” Tucker said. “See whatever problems we had or whatever we did well and see how we have to complement each other — offense, defense, special teams, how everything works together.”

It’s not something the Buffs (3-4 overall, 1-3 Pac-12) can do every week. Film sessions with position groups take less time and can offer more specific coaching.

… The Buffs are currently mired in a three-game losing streak, a situation that every head coach knows can be the source of locker room rifts. But Tucker said he has seen no signs of finger-pointing or division within the team.

“We have a very unselfish football team,” Tucker said.  “I haven’t seen any finger pointing. I’m always going to have a pulse of the team. (Strength coach) Drew Wilson in our weight room … I consult with him and he hasn’t sensed or heard any finger pointing.”

While the Buffs no doubt have to find a way to correct the errors that have led to their three losses, Tucker isn’t wavering from his core fundamentals.

“We’re on the same page,” he said. “We all have to do better. We have to play harder, we have to play tougher, we have to play smarter. It’s not just one guy.  It’s a team effort. You win as a team, you lose as a team.”

Continue reading story here

*Video – Mel Tucker’s post-practice talk with media*

From YouTube, courtesy of BuffStampede.com … Entire team watched game film … I wanted everyone to see what everyone was doing, and what are our issuesIt’s the little things, attention to detail ... I thought it was a good exercise for us … more of an appreciation for what the man next to me is doing …”.

Kickoff time set for CU/UCLA game 

Press release from CUBuffs.com … The Colorado at UCLA football game on Saturday, November 2, will be televised nationally by the Pac-12 Network and will kickoff at 7:00 p.m. MDT (clocks move back an hour at 2 a.m. on Nov. 3).

Other Games That Day

2:00pm MDT – Utah at Washington, FOX

2:30pm MDT – Oregon State at Arizona, Pac-12 Network

6:00pm MDT – Oregon at USC, FOX

“South Park Stadium”, anyone?

… No inside information, just wishful thinking … 

From Bloomberg … “South Park” is the latest beneficiary of Hollywood’s rerun mania.

The show’s creators and media giant Viacom Inc. expect to share between $450 million and $500 million by selling the streaming rights to the animated comedy, one of the longest-running TV series in U.S. history, according to people familiar with the matter.

As many as a half-dozen companies are bidding for exclusive U.S. streaming rights to past episodes of the show, which has been available on Walt Disney Co.’s Hulu in recent years. Viacom and the show’s creators hope to secure a new deal by the end of 2019 and could decide on the winning bidder as soon as this weekend, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the negotiations are private.

The value of popular TV reruns has skyrocketed, fueled by new streaming platforms seeking programming that can lure subscribers and provide an edge over rivals. Viacom and “South Park” creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone expect the multiyear deal to net more than double what Hulu paid in 2015.

Continue reading story here

Neill Woelk’s Takeaways from Washington State game

From CUBuffs.com … After two long road trips — literally and figuratively — the Colorado Buffaloes finally get the chance to play at home again this week.

But the task doesn’t get any easier. Directly ahead is a Friday night matchup at Folsom Field with a talented USC team (7 p.m., ESPN2), which means the Buffs get to spend the week answering questions about Colorado’s all-time 0-13 record against the Trojans.

But years past won’t be on CU coaches’ and players’ minds. Rather, Mel Tucker‘s team will be intent upon addressing more-recent issues, beginning with those that re-occurred in Saturday night’s 41-10 loss at Washington State.

Our weekly takeaways:

1. Colorado’s passing game has to re-establish some consistency. For the first five weeks of the season, CU’s offense kept the Buffs in games, thanks in large part to an efficient and effective passing game.

But over the last two weeks, Colorado has scored just 13 points, with the air attack totaling just 272 yards and no touchdowns (131 vs. Oregon, 141 vs. Washington State).

The biggest issue, of course, has been turnovers, specifically interceptions. After throwing just two interceptions in the first five games, CU quarterback Steven Montez has thrown six in the last two games. Not only have they been drive killers, they have provided a short field to the opponent.

Late Saturday night in Pullman, reporters asked Tucker whether he would “evaluate” the quarterback position (translation: will he consider making a change).

“We need to just get him (Montez) right,”  Tucker said. “We evaluate everything all the time. It’s continuous. We just need to get him right. It’s really tough right after a game, emotions are high coming off a tough loss. This is not the time to make those type of decisions.”

No doubt, Montez has struggled over the last two games. After back-to-back games with Pro Football Focus grades in the mid-80s (Arizona State and Arizona), he dropped to the mid-50s vs. Oregon, then a season-low 46.1 at Washington State. That’s definitely not a positive trend.

Still, the guess here is that it’s unlikely Tucker will make a change at this point of the season (especially after backup Tyler Lytle suffered an injury on his first play Saturday and No. 3 Blake Stenstrom threw an interception on his first collegiate pass).

But it doesn’t mean the CU coaching staff — in particular QBs coach Jay Johnson — won’t use every option available to get Montez “right” as they head down the season stretch. With five games remaining, the Buffs have plenty to play for and Colorado coaches will no doubt go in the direction they believe gives them the best chance to win those games.

Continue reading story here

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October 20th 

… CU in a few minutes … 

Mel Tucker: “It’s going to be a tough week for us”

From CUBuffs.com … Mel Tucker knows there are no shortcuts when it comes to fixing what ails his Colorado Buffaloes.

All Tucker and his coaching staff can do is get back to work, evaluate film and do their best to correct the problems that have sent the Buffs into a three-game tailspin.

Granted, it’s a long list.

For the second week in a row, the Buffs looked outmatched on both sides of the ball in Saturday’s 41-10 loss at Washington State. Offensively, they again committed costly turnovers (two first-half interceptions) and failed to take full advantage of red zone opportunities (one touchdown and one field goal in three trips).  Defensively, they put themselves in an early hole that simply proved to be too deep to completely overcome.

It all added up to another long plane trip home — and this time, with a short week ahead. Directly on the horizon is a Friday night matchup with a talented USC squad that is coming off a Saturday night dismantling of Arizona, the same Arizona team that started CU’s current three-game losing streak.

“I told the guys, there’s not going to be anything easy about it,” Tucker said after Saturday’s loss. “It’s going to be a tough week for us. We’re going to grind it out. As a coaching staff, we’re going to figure out a way to get our guys better and we’re going to challenge guys.”

And that process, he hinted, may result in a few lineup changes.

“We’ll look for guys that want to compete, guys that are going to be all in and going to do what we need them to do,” Tucker said. “Those guys will play. The other guys won’t play.”

Continue reading story here

Buffs trying to move on: “We’re just trying not to feel down or anything” 

From the Daily Camera … Win or lose, turning the page from one game to the next is always a requirement for the Colorado football team.

Mounting losses and back-to-back blowout defeats makes that task a bit tougher.

“It sucks to lose,” freshman cornerback KJ Trujillo said on Saturday night after the Buffaloes’ 41-10 loss to Washington State at Martin Stadium in Pullman, Wash. “We hate losing, but we’re on to the next one. We have to just be focused and handle business all week in practice and just be ready for next week.”

Of course, that was the message a week earlier, as well, after a 45-3 loss at Oregon, and the week before that after a 35-30 home loss to Arizona.

CU (3-4, 1-3 Pac-12) brings a three-game losing streak into Friday’s matchup with South division-leading Southern California (4-3, 3-1) at Folsom Field and the skid is magnified by the lack of competitiveness by the Buffs the last two weeks. This is the first time since the last two games of 2016 – the Pac-12 title game against Washington and Alamo Bowl against Oklahoma State – that CU has lost back-to-back games by 30-plus points. The last time it happened in the regular season was 2013.

“We’re just trying not to feel down or anything,” senior linebacker Davion Taylor said. “Just keep on pushing, look at the next game and fix the mistakes we have from this game; fix it for USC.”

Continue reading story here

Colorado an 11-point underdog at home against USC

From Las Vegas Insider

Pac-12 games: 

— Colorado … an 11.0-point underdog at home against USC … Friday, 7:00 p.m., MT, ESPNU

— Stanford … a 3.0-point underdog at home against Arizona … Saturday, 1:30 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks

— UCLA … a 2.5-point underdog at home against Arizona State … Saturday, 5:30 p.m., MT, Pac-12 Networks

— Utah … an 18.0-point favorite at home against Cal … 8:00 p.m., MT, FS1

— Oregon … a 15.0-point favorite at home against Washington State … 8:30 p.m., MT, ESPN

Idle … Washington; Oregon State …

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36 Replies to “Colorado Daily – USC”

    1. Points lost to unforced penalties were the difference. And Steven should have never come back in. We should have finished with the running game.

  1. I think I could score 10 tds in a season against this D. Maybe in 3 games. I love my Buffs don’t get me wrong. But this is a coaching issue when players are not within 10 yds of the offensive players. Don’t tell me our defensive players are that slow or dumb.

    1. 57 seconds 4th and inches and you wait for the spot of the ball?!!!! Ok I’m getting frustrated, but this is your job and you should know when to call and what to do. I’m so concerned at this teams lack of discipline. Embree-no discipline, MAC-no-discipline, Tuck???- losing control….

      1. And stupid offensive play calling. This was a game LOST!!! I’m so pissed!!! YOu don’t make steps forward with stupidity!!!!! This is a terrible loss on many levels. lm polishing my resume for either coordinator, experience-ehhh don’t need any

  2. Yep good players (note good) need to step up as in any endeavor. When your good players can’t do it ya have to move on through the cupboard. Crumbs

    Without coaches even the average to good players have no chance. Witness the Mickey years. Except for one of course.

    Go Buffs Beat USC…………..Dang nab it………………..it’s time

  3. “We’ll look for guys that want to compete, guys that are going to be all in and going to do what we need them to do,” Tucker said. “Those guys will play. The other guys won’t play.”

    Yup the players got to execute. The previous coach did not understand the above. Hence GONE

    Go Buffs Beat USC like I know you can

  4. Oh no. For the love of coaches and fans everywhere! “Big time players make big time pays in big games. Your good players have to step up in big games and be good players. They call that competitive greatness.“

    Short version. Players make plays, players win games.

    Maybe this guy and the last guy aren’t that different after all?

    Here’s to hoping this guy gets better players to do better things than the last guy.

    Go Buffs

  5. Seems like a smart idea to give Maddox a redshirt. I cant believe he is going to be the difference between getting to a bowl game or even beating Stanford and UCLA and now he is gone anyway .
    And Callier “just not working out for him?”
    I dont think we are getting the whole story on either of those guys

    1. What I don’t get is that if Maddox is a Jr who wants to redshirt and he transfers, won’t he have to sit next year after redshirting this year too? No, he can’t redshirt for 2 years. So, wouldn’t he lose this year, his 3rd year, then he has to sit his senior year for 3 out of 4 years with 1 year left to complete 4 out of 5.

      Unless he transfers to a school right away and then sits until a year from now, wouldn’t he end up losing a year of eligibility to have only a year left? Unless granted a medical too, but being able to play again and then deciding to transfer hardly qualifies for a medical, does it?

      So, staying and not redshirting would have ended up the same, having only a year left to play, but he’d still have a redshirt.

  6. Friday night comes so quickly after a Saturday game.
    National TV
    Against USC
    At home
    Nothing to lose
    Everything to gain.

    Is there Folsom Magic waiting to happen?

    Up the Buffalo

    Note: 3 at home………….win em all…………starts Friday…………

  7. I haven’t dug deep enough to comment on the cupboard. I feel the biggest overall issue is lack of a winning mentality at the subconscious level. All the words sound fine but does this set of players really believe they can have a winning season? Montez has to have minimal confidence at this point. The players know their on field leader is struggling and not confident. That seeps into the whole team. This does not bode well for Friday which looms as another blowout on national TV. The AZ loss was damaging and the beginning of the doubt. Hard to reverse at this point along with the talent mismatch against USC. Buffs lost to AZ who got demolished by USC. I would like nothing better than to see the first win against USC and to be proven wrong. Go Buffs!!

    1. Good observation. We just need 6 more good games out of Montez. Really good games. Winning games. Otherwise he joins the last couple of Buff qb’s that set lots of records.

      Go Buffs Beat USC……………Go Montez Be your best

  8. The cupboard was not empty. It had a couple of issues:
    – It was stocked with people that fit Mac’s team profile (smaller linemen – both sides, different line backer alignment, great RB’s and great wide receivers).
    – Tucker wants much bigger lineman on both sides of the ball and so he went out and got JC transfers and is playing freshman there. The technique and schemes they run are suited for those types of bodies and they are still adapting
    – A bunch of the DB’s transferred out (and we lost another one. Whatever Mac was he was a great recruiter and developer of DB talent. Tucker has a bunch of freshman playing because a few got injured. One thing I wonder about here is Tucker really emphasizes physicality in practice and I wonder if his DB’s are getting banged up because of it.
    – Change in coaching always looses you a couple of guys you would want. Antwine on the line and the DB’s would have helped right now and would likely have been the difference in the 2 close losses.
    – The switch from the Buff back to the Star back hurts and it is obvious we are still trying to figure that one out.

    Lastly, I hate to put this on Montez’s shoulders but before the game I said 2 things (Montez is a horrible bad weather qb, Montez is horrible when he is under pressure). The weather was bad and WSU did exactly what I said they would do rush 4-5 and put Montez under pressure. He threw off his back foot the entire day (even when there wasn’t pressure on that play) and could not adapt to the faster pace of decision making required. I like Montez and the kid has a cannon for an arm and when he is comfortable can spin it like no one else. The problem is it is so easy to make him uncomfortable now….. I am not sure if Lytle or Senstrom are legit answers at this point either so I think you ride with Montez this season and then let the off season play out. I would just emphasize to the coordinators you have got to give Montez a blitz/pressure read and you have got to get him throwing that read immediately. I also think you need to start hitting him in practice, I bet he is all world in practice because he never gets hit, and always feels comfortable. I would hit the kid with a hose, stand him next to a fan on the side line and then let the defenders t off on him when they get to him in practice. Probably too late to fix it now but if the kid could learn to play uncomfortable he would be an NFL starter. Oh one more thing I would stop him from playing basketball fade away jumpers work in basketball but do not in football and I think he is getting bad habits…..

  9. Here you go Berlin. You are always ready to throw recruiting around to validate your point:

    Here’s the weighted 4-year national recruiting rankings in the PAC-12:

    Oregon 13
    USC 16
    Washington 18
    Stanford 21
    Arizona State 31
    UCLA 34
    Utah 40
    Colorado 43
    California 46
    Arizona 55
    Washington State 61
    Oregon State 66

    I’m done Stu. It’s tedious. This came from a free site; Here is the link (below). Not stealing any BuffSTampede thunder here.

    Moving on to hoops —-9/8!!!! TadBall! Go Buffs

    https://www.sbnation.com/college-football-recruiting/2019/2/7/18215228/college-football-recruiting-rankings-2019-class

    1. Just for you. Average rating by team without the bs number of players signed

      2015 83.05 12rh in the pac
      2016 83.53 10th in the pac
      2017 85.21 8th in the pac
      2018 84.83 9th in the pac
      2019 84.91 9th in the pac
      2020 84,55 10th in the pac

      Bare really and the Pac is where they play 75% of their games. Sheesh Data kills

  10. This definitely could be concerning: “We’ll look for guys that want to compete, guys that are going to be all in and going to do what we need them to do,” Tucker said. “Those guys will play. The other guys won’t play.”

    Doesn’t matter how stocked the cupboards are, or aren’t, if the kids aren’t buying what the coaches are selling. So, did they not evaluate their roster correctly, or did they lose people over the last few weeks? Or, is the “tough” attitude they’re trying to instill too much for the “tennis shoes league” of the Pac 12 – specifically at CU?

    Who knows? We’ll get more insight as this season rolls on, no doubt. Either way, I’ll fall into another coach-ism “it’s never as bad as it feels, nor as good as it looks”.

    I’m just hoping to see a better performance against USC than we’ve seen the last two weeks. That is all. It’s up to the coaches, and the players, to make that happen.

    Go Buffs.

  11. Please, show me a more well stocked cupboard since rick turned it over to Gary than Mel found in the kitchen. Please. Been waiting a few days now for you to answer that. Happy to wait forever, which is par for your course, bub.

    Go Buffs

    1. Par for the course is your laziness. In fact you should provide us all the info. Start with Mac1. Oh the relevance. Not.

      qb room is so stocked. Get a grip.

      Buffs.

      Note: Yur like a child. Just because you asked a dumb question you expect and answer. You want the answer go get it. I didn’t mention any comparison to Coach Barnett. You did. \So do the work…but you never do

      1. Bwaaaahahahahahahahahh. Wait a minute there, bub. Wasn’t Tyler Lytle the highest rated QB commit in about 15yrs for CU? ESPN rated him a four-star. 24/7and Rivals as a 3-star – yet you’ve chosen ESPN rankings to fit your opinions aplenty. At least as importantly, per Brian Howell “Lytle has more non-CU scholarship offers than the last 15 prep quarterbacks the Buffs have signed, combined. Those 15, dating back to 2004, had a total of 23 non-CU offers. ”

        Yeah, now I know your response “that’s all worthless, they didn’t evaluate the talent correctly” Or “they didn’t develop that talent correctly”. But? Who’s job is it to develop that talent now?

        Which brings me back to this staff inheriting by far, the most well stocked cupboard of any new coaching staff since Rick to Gary. By far.

        Here’s hoping they can still do something with them this year, and stop the beatings we’ve seen the last two weeks.

        Go Buffs.

        1. Mickey jes Mickey

          So bring the data wise guy .. You know the cupboard stuff you can’t cause you lazy
          and you love Mickey and that ol OC………….i forgot his name already

          so they did pretty good in 2017 Thanks to 2016 which means thanks to the D C

          But we already know that

          Well that is all. Your babble is a polluted brook Kinda So b ring your data goofy. We are waiting. You bring up one player…………….. that was not developed ………….and well cannot plaay

          Cupboard Buffs

  12. “We’ll look for guys that want to compete, guys that are going to be all in and going to do what we need them to do,” Tucker said. “Those guys will play. The other guys won’t play.

    ……………………………………..THE OL BARE CUPBOARD………………………………..

    1. Mel Tucker quote from 12/15/2018 in the Denver Post: ”

      .. New Colorado Buffaloes football coach Mel Tucker on CU recruiting and current roster: … we’ve got several young men here this week,” … “Our roster, our cupboard, is not bare.”.

      Keep bloviating in your own alternative universe Berlin. I got quotes (and actual video) all over the place from the brain trust of CU football: George, Tucker and Carl to back up my point. You have song lyrics from a washed up singer from the 70s (seriously, Linda Ronstad?) Well, if old Linda is the voice of authority then I will use her lyrics for your football knowledge:

      “Your no good, your no good your no good, baby your no good…”

        1. Agreed, tedious and moving on. Just ironic that when adversity hit, you copied the old Mikey Mac playbook of excuses and playing the blame game-exactly what losing programs do.
          HCMT isn’t doing any of that and I believe what he says. The program is in good hands. Recruit, recruit and coach better. Learn to win in the PAC-12. CU will get there.

          No excuses program–just like HCMT says.

          GO Buffs

          1. Nah I gave you the truth. You didn’t like it so you got all pissy. Data always wins.

            Your data is flawed.

            Anyway have a nice day

            Go Buffs Kill USC

      1. Also the words were sung by neville not linda. Ge educated But linda does fit you when it comes to understanding how it works. Really amazing.

      2. you wont be getting any agreement over your take on Linda around here. I saw her in a basement club in Denver with the Stone Ponies. You are going to find a lot of agreement that at the time she was the hottest woman on the planet….and she did have some pipes too. We all get old (the lucky ones anyway). If you graduated in 96 you dont have that much longer to go to be “washed up.”

        1. Clock is already ticking on the “washed up” EP. I would have been around 86 or 87 Buff if I didn’t go straight in to Uncle Sam’s service. Needed the education benefits and too much of a knuckle-head for college right away.

          Remember watching Linda sing to a group of prisoners back on tv once circa late 70s (she was doing the old Johnny Cash gig of singing in a prison). Linda belted out “your no good” to the inmates. My sister wisecracked what a morale booster that must have been for the prisoners. My pops couldn’t stand her because of the Jerry Brown thing.

          GO Buffs

      3. December 8, 2018………….New Colorado Buffaloes football coach Mel Tucker ….on first day of hire…speaking on CU recruiting and current roster: … we’ve got several young men here this week,” … “Our roster, our cupboard, is not bare.”.

        HCMT………………Oct 20, 2019 about his current roster……………. Hmmm

        “Well look for guys that want to compete, guys that are going to be all in and going to do what we need them to do,” Tucker said. “Those guys will play. The other guys won’t play.

        “I ain’t got much…………….but you know I love you.

        I am trying to understand why he would say either one of those statements? Maybe Time points out all deficiencies.

        Anyway next year will be a different tune.

        Note: funny how the roster was so stocked back in december that he had to bring in all those JC guys. And gonna do it again this year……………But has a 4 star qb and receiver and lineman.

        Yup Ya know I love ya honey but you ain’t a player. i.e. 96 and yur earache.

        Yo note: New game plan/starters? Buffs gonna fall just short of a bowl game damn

        1. Huge difference between roster being stocked and a bare cupboard. The fact you can’t understand the difference makes this thread tedious and pointless. Not one quote about CU going head-to-head with the top of the conference (yet). There were holes to be filled–every team trying to break into the top-10 on a consistent basis has them. Those outside the top 25 have even more. That’s why you should utilize JUCO and transfers. HCMT said at PAC-12 media day he was utilizing the JUCO route more this year (and maybe the next few) more than he would like. He (and any clear-eyed) observers knew there were depth issues-especially at safety and d-line. But that’s different than a “bare cupboard” argument.
          A bare cupboard means no food in the pantry. A less than 100% cupboard means there are missing items that need replaced. That’s the argument.

          Most people thought CU was a 5-7 win team; hoping for 6 and a bowl. If they don’t reach that win mark it means the current players underperformed (hence, Mel’s quote about finding those that do, and the coaching staff has , at times, underperfomed–I give you the Air Force game and curious play calls and strategic game management during Wazzu and Arizona). At times, they have played up to and beyond their skill level (2nd half Nebraska, Arizona State).

          CU has the talent to play with the number 6-12 teams in the PAC-12. If you look (and I have) the weighted average recruiting classes between CU and Arizona the last 4-5 years CU is right even (and slightly ahead). Same goes with California, Oregon State and others. They are not ready to go head to head with Oregon and Washington and Utah. USC will be interesting this Friday.

          No excuses program.
          Excuses + blame game = Mikey Mac

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