Post-Spring Depth Chart: Defense and Special Teams


Posts Tagged ‘James Stefanou’

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Questions abound for CU’s defense and special teams … Can Jalen Sami (out since 2016) adequately replace Javier Edwards at nose tackle? … Can Davion Taylor successfully transition from Buff Backer to “Star Backer”? … Will the Buffs start a converted wide receiver and a converted cornerback at safety? … Whatever happened to Sam Loy? …

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Compare: Neill Woelk’s Five Takeaways from Second Spring Scrimmage … According to head coach Mel Tucker, the Buffs “put some money in the bank” on Friday at CU’s second spring scrimmage … A unit-by-unit review of the numbers show a number of positives (and a few negatives) …

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First spring scrimmage edition, with a unit-by-unit review … Mel Tucker: “We’re still not playing as fast and as physical as we need to, but I thought we made a step today … Guys were focusing throughout from start to finish. I thought the execution was solid” …

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The 2018 season was supposed to be a banner year for CU kickers, but James Stefanou and Alex Kinney were both felled by injuries … Will the CU special teams be special in 2019? … (and can someone teach Ronnie Blackmon not to field punts inside the CU ten yard line?) …

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On a colder than expected Friday evening (46-degrees at kickoff), a Blackout Folsom field crowd of 46,814 was on hand to watch Colorado raise its record to 4-0 record for the first time since 1998, using a big second half to pull away from UCLA, 38-16.

Quarterback Steven Montez went 22-of-26 for 237 yards and a touchdown, with 11 carries for 81 yards and two more scores to lead the Buffs. Wide receiver Laviska Shenault had 12 receptions for 126 yards and a touchdown, also carrying the ball five time for 18 yards and another score. The rushing attack was led by Travon McMillian, who had 21 carries for 102 yards and a touchdown.

In all, Colorado out-gained UCLA, 477 yards to 289, with the Buffs dominating the second half. In the first half, the scoreboard and the stats sheet were about even, with CU holding a slight edge in total yards – 196-191 – and an even slimmer margin on the scoreboard, at 14-13. In the second half, however, the Buffs pulled away, scoring the final 24 points of the game after UCLA had taken a 16-14 lead early in the third quarter.

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Steven Montez hit Laviska Shenault for a 40-yard touchdown with 1:06 to play, giving Colorado a 33-28 come-from-behind win over Nebraska in Lincoln. Montez went 33-for-50 passing, going for 351 yards and three touchdowns. Shenault collected ten of those passes for 177 yards and a touchdown … also scoring on a three-yard run in the first quarter.

The game went back and forth all afternoon. The Buffs raced out to an early 14-0 lead, only to watch the Cornhuskers dominate play for the remainder of the first half. Nebraska led 21-17 at the break, having posted 243 yards rushing to CU’s nine. The Buffs steadied themselves in the second half, overcoming two missed field goals before securing the winning points in the final minute of play.

Nebraska had 565 yards of total offense against the Colorado defense, with freshman quarterback completing 15-of-20 passes for 187 yards and a touchdown (one interception), while also leading the Cornhuskers in rushing (15 carries for 117 yards and two touchdowns). For the Buffs, other than the Montez-to-Shenault combo, there was little offensive production (395 total yards of total offense). Kyle Evans and Travon McMillian each had 25 yards rushing, while no Buff other than Shenault was over 50 yards receiving (though Jay MacIntyre had eight catches for 45 yards and two touchdowns.

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Colorado scored on its first three possessions of the game, never looking back in a 45-13 rout of Colorado State in Denver. Steven Montez was almost perfect on the night, completing 22-of-25 passes for 338 yards and four touchdowns as the Buffs won the Rocky Mountain Showdown for the fourth straight time.

In rolling up 596 yards of total offense, there were many heroes for the Buff offense. Sophomore wide receiver Laviska Shenault set Rocky Mountain Showdown records, both with his 11 receptions and his 211 yards receiving. Virginia Tech graduate transfer running back Travon McMillian had 103 yards rushing (equaling the total rushing yards for CSU on the night) on only ten carries. K.D. Nixon also hit triple digits, with six receptions for 112 yards, highlighted by a 46-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter.

How big a night was it for the Buff offense? For the first time in school history, the Buffs had a 300-yard passer (Montez; 338), a 200-yard receiver (Shenault; 211) and a 100-yard rusher (McMillian; 103) in the same game.

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Friday Fast Facts

//posted 8.30.2018

Neill Woelk’s Fast Five Keys for Rocky Mountain Showdown … All-time CU/CSU series history … Ticket sales for the 2018 Rocky Mountain Showdown … Recap of the 2017 RMS, a 17-3 victory for the Buff win

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Notes and Quotes – ST

//posted 4.12.2018

CU has returning starters at placekicker and punter, but the return game remains a question mark

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Spring Ball First Look: ST

//posted 2.11.2018

The Buffs return both starting kicker and punter, with the return game the focus this spring

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Utah 34, Colorado 13

//posted 11.27.2017

In a battle between two teams with 5-6 records, Utah became bowl-eligible with a dominating 34-13 victory over Colorado. The Utes sprinted out to a 28-0 halftime lead, never looking back to post a three-touchdown win, the first game between the teams as members of the Pac-12 decided by more than a touchdown.

Zach Moss ran for a career-high 196 yards and two touchdowns to lead the Utes, while Phillip Lindsay closed out his Colorado career with 18 carries for 72 yards and a touchdown.

“(A bowl game is) a big positive. … It beats the alternative”, said Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham. “If we’re sitting here at 5-7 and not going, we’re feeling pretty lousy.”

Of course, the loss left Colorado at 5-7 and “feeling pretty lousy”, completing a worst-to-first-to-worst campaign, finishing the 2017 season as the only team in the Pac-12 South not eligible to compete in a bowl game.

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No. 15 USC 38, Colorado 24

//posted 11.11.2017

Quarterback Sam Darnold threw for 329 yards and three touchdowns, rushing for another, leading No. 15 USC to a 38-24 victory over Colorado. Ronald Jones II added 142 yards on the ground for 9-2 USC, which defeated Colorado for the 12th straight time.

The Buffs were led by quarterback Steven Montez, who went 27-for-49 for 376 yards and two touchdowns. An interception for a touchdown thrown right before the half, however, gave USC a 20-0 lead at the half, with the Buffs never getting within two scores the remainder of the game.

Overall, the stats were fairly close, with both teams posting 23 first downs. USC had 522 yards of total offense, to 486 for Colorado. Mistakes on offense, defense, and special teams, however, doomed the Buffs to their sixth loss of the season, with a win on the road against Utah now a necessity if Colorado was to go bowling in consecutive years for the first time since 2004-05.

“We had some critical mistakes and kind of gave them the game,” said CU head coach Mike MacIntyre. “They’re the most talented team in our league year in and year out, no doubt about it. We had some opportunities tonight and squandered it away.”

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ARCHIVED GAME OF THE WEEK
1996 Michigan exacts revenge for "Miracle at Michigan" game with 20-13 win in Boulder ESPN GameDay on hand to watch No. 5 CU v. No. 11 Michigan READ