Random Thoughts – Fall Camp Roster (Offense) Edition – Volume XXXIV

Buff Trivia Question of the Week … Where does Colorado rank on the list of all-time victories? On the list of all-time appearances in the Associated Press poll?

While Signing Days and Spring Practices whet the appetite of the Buff Nation for the opening of the Mel Tucker era in Boulder, things start to get real over the next few weeks.

Pac-12 Media Day is this Wednesday, July 24th. CU players report the following Wednesday, July 31st, with it all becoming real for the 2019 Buffs on Thursday, August 1st, with the first practice of Fall Camp.

It’s time for a re-introduction to the 83-man CU roster. We’ll start with the offense, and pick up the defense next Sunday:

Quarterbacks …

Scholarships (4) … Steven Montez, Sr.; Sam Noyer, Jr.; Tyler Lytle, So.; Blake Stenstrom, R-Fr.

Comment … Steven Montez is a three-year starter, and already has over two dozen school records. Montez is on preseason national award watch lists, and it will take an injury for Montez to be taken out of the starting lineup.

The competition for primary backup will be an interesting one. Not only are Noyer and Lytle competing for potential playing time late in games in 2019, they are auditioning for the starting role in 2020. Next fall, the CU non-conference slate is: at Colorado State; Fresno State; at Texas A&M … with road games at USC, Stanford, and Washington.

Running backs …

Scholarships (5) … Alex Fontenot, So.; Jarek Broussard, R-Fr.; Deion Smith, R-Fr.; Joe Davis, Fr.; Jaren Mangham, Fr.

Comment … One sophomore and four freshmen? That’s all you need to know about the excitement which will be surrounding the running back battle during Fall Camp. Running backs coach Darian Hagan has indicated that there will be a running back by committee for the Buffs this fall … at least at the outset. Hagan has also indicated that he is willing to go with the hot hand, so the backs will have plenty of incentive to try and get to the top of the roster by August 30th.

Sophomore Alex Fontenot, he of the 11 carries for 43 yards in 2018, has the only experience, but Buff fans are most excited about the possibilities represented by Jaren Mangham. If Mangham can pick up the nuances of the game – including pass protection – he may become the first back onto the field come August 30th.

Wide receivers … 

Scholarships (11) … Tony Brown, Sr.; KD Nixon, Jr.; Laviska Shenault, Jr.; Daniel Arias; So.; Maurice Bell; So.; Jaylon Jackson, So.; Dimitri Stanley, R-Fr.; Dylan Thomas, R-Fr.; Braedin-Huffman-Dixon, Fr.; Tarik Luckett, Fr.; La’Vontae Shenault, Fr.

Comment … Laviska Shenault is a “full go” for Fall Camp, and is a preseason All-American. Shenault’s running mate from DeSoto high in Texas, KD Nixon, has promised that the pair wants to go down in CU history as “legendary”.

So, who will be the third wide receiver on the field … and the fourth? Senior Tony Brown would seem to be logical choice, he being the only other upperclassmen on the roster, but sophomores Daniel Arias and Maurice Bell are posted to make their presence felt. With Brown, Shenault (almost definitely) and Nixon (possibly) playing their final seasons this fall, it would make sense to get some of the younger stars-to-be some playing time this fall.

Tight ends … 

Scholarships (6) … Beau Bisharat, Sr.; Jalen Harris, Sr.; Darrion Jones, Sr.; Jared Poplawski, So.; Brady Russell, So.; Luke Stillwell, So.

Comment … For starters, you could win a bar bet if you ask your mark: Does CU have more scholarship running backs or tight ends on the roster in 2019? Colorado, which hasn’t utilized the tight end position in years, has six scholarship tight ends to work with this fall.

Jalen Harris, the graduate transfer from Auburn, will get a great deal of attention during Fall Camp, as Harris makes his debut wearing black-and-gold. Beau Bisharat made the move from running back to tight end, so you know he wants to get on the field in his senior season.

The Buff coaches are looking to use two-tight end sets this fall. Currently, Harris is listed as the top Y-tight end (more of the receiving tight end) on the roster, and Russell the top H-tight end (more of a blocking back), but the tight end roster is a tabula rasa for Mel Tucker & Co., so news concerning the tight end position this August will receive a great deal of attention from the Buff Nation.

Offensive Line … 

Scholarship (18) … Arlington Hambright, Sr.; Tim Lynott, Jr., Sr.; Kary Kutsch, Jr.; Va’atofu Sauvao, Jr.; Hunter Vaughn, Jr.; Frank Filip, So.; Chance Lytle, So; Jake Moretti, So.; Heston Paige, So.; Colby Pursell, So.; William Sherman, So.; Josh Jynes, R-Fr.; Kanan Ray, R-Fr.; Casey Roddick, R-Fr.; Austin Johnson, Fr.; Nikko Pohahau, Fr.; Valentin Senn, Fr.; Jake Wiley, Fr.

Comment … For all of the hand-wringing over the weakness of the unit, there appears – at the opening of Fall Camp – that four of the five starting positions are set:

  • Left Tackle – Arlington Hambright
  • Center – Tim Lynott, Jr.
  • Right tackle – William Sherman
  • One guard position – Colby Pursell

Which leaves the other guard position up for grabs.  Will it be junior college transfer Kary Kutsch, red-shirt freshman Casey Roddick, or, perhaps, junior Va’atofu Sauvao?

Of course, this all depends on the other four penciled in starters coming through. Hambright has been an assumed starter since he announced he was coming to CU from Oklahoma State, but Hambright has yet to suit up for a practice with his new team. Lynott and Pursell are seemingly interchangeable at center and one of the guard positions, but will they be able to settle in at their new positions (Pursell started every game at center last season)?

Overall … The Buff offense appears to set at quarterback, two wide receiver positions, and four of the five offensive line positions. There are also names in line for the third wide receiver and tight end positions. So, at least on paper, the biggest issues for the offense at the opening of fall camp is to settle on a starting running back and one of the guard positions.

If it were only that easy …

Buff Trivia Question of the Week … Where does Colorado rank on the list of all-time victories? On the list of all-time appearances in the Associated Press poll?

Answer ... CU is currently tied with Wisconsin for 25th place on the all-time victories list, with 705. If the Buffs fail to keep up with the Badgers this fall (or fail to catch Navy, which is currently 24th, with 711 wins), the Buffs will fall out of the top 25 for the first time in decades (Source: Winsipedia)

Colorado has already fallen out of the top 25 for weeks in the Associated Press poll. The Buffs have been ranked in 304 polls, good enough for 27th on the all-time list. Georgia Tech is 25th, with 307 weeks, while West Virginia is 26th, with 306 weeks (Source: Winsipedia)


4 Replies to “Random Thoughts – The Fall Camp Roster (Offense) Edition”

  1. Thank you to HWSRN and Mickey Mac for plummeting The Buffs to the bottom and out of the top 25 in wins and AP appearances. Those guys never met an excuse they didn’t make. Here’s hoping Coach Tucker can break the losing legacy of those two clowns.

  2. RB crew reminds me of the year when Troutman, Barnes and ?? (can’t remember off the top of my head) were all Frosh. RB is not a huge concern, I believe we have enough talent.

    Montez needs to take the next step that we’ve all been waiting for….we obviously have the necessary players at the skill positions. His anticipation/accuracy needs to improve, esp. in the short/int. game that is so crucial on 3rd downs. In fairness hopefully this offense features a bit more diversity vs. running the same plays every game (except the UW TE anomaly), but that could be put on the QB not being able to handle the differing game plans on a weekly basis.

    Hoping Noyer can continue to build off the nice Spring Game.

    1. If the O line can “take the next step” then you can be sure Montez will do the same. The hopeful diversity you mentioned will also be a factor as well as improved play calling on those third downs.
      I cant imagine being a QB when everyone in the stands can predict with 80 percent accuracy what the third down play will be…..let alone the opposing D.

      1. You still whining about the seven years of poor quarterback coaching, poor game planning, poor offensive scheme, poor play calling, and poor in game adjustments? Sheesh.

        Up the Buffalo. The Buffalo runs into the storm not away from it……………………….unless a lump sum of 7 million and a new 1.5 million opportunity comes calling. Then pack the GH, say nothing, and sneak out of town………………….yo Buff forever…………….not

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