Colorado Buffaloes Opponent Watch: Week 3

Andrew Luck will melt you with his laser-beam eyes...but not until the second half.

If you're only interested in our opponents the week we're slated to play them, then this piece isn't for you. This is a look at all 12 13 of our opponents in 2011 and how they did from week-to-week. Eventually, this will be a measure of our schedule strength, but since there's a pretty good chance we're not playing for a BCS bowl this season, it's just a friendly update about those teams that we'll be facing at some point. Also, with us playing Cal in '10 and this season, OSU is the only Pac-12 team we don't know anything about, so I figured we should follow them a bit so we know what to expect when we face them finally in 2013. And because they're 'important' too...

I'm filling in for David on the Opponent Watch for this week. If you don't like it, then too bad!

Hawaii Warriors (1-2) - Lost to UNLV 20-40

Four turnovers will defeat almost anyone. Hawai'i was no exception and lost by twenty visiting the same UNLV that yeilded 59 to Wazzu. The Warriors started slow (on the road) again: they fell behind 0-17 and did not score second touchdown until the waning minutes of the third quarter.  Furthermore, Moniz was held to 233 yds passing.  So much for winning the WAC.

Follow the jump to see if Texas has joined our conference yet!

California Golden Bears (3-0) - Beat Presbyterian 63-12

The Presbyterian Blue Hose's Hose posed no slows to Cal's roll.  The game was so lopsided that I'm sure anyone not actively suiting up was inventing similar poetry to describe how inadequate AT&T Park is for Cal's vaunted football steamroller.  Yes, 581 total yards for Cal, yes 8.0 yards per throw, and yes 6.2 avg yards per carry for Cal's RB Isi Sofele. And yes, their kick returner Brendan Bigelow was named Pac-12 player of the week.  However Cal had no business giving up one point (much less twelve) or an interception to the Blue Hose; so they receive no points.  They face U-W in a Pac-12 North 'separation game.'

Colorado St. Rams (2-1) - Lost to Colorado 14-28

WOOO! Go Buffs! That said; they're missing Sisson right now big time.  Sure, Thomas had a nice completion percentage, but their top two rushers combined for 59 rushing yards.  They averaged 20.5 kickoff return yards and 12.4 punt return yards; which should help keep them in games when they begin MW play. (no, seriously, that's the new name for the conference). They travel to face the other-other-other Aggies, Utah State.  Good Riddance.

Ohio St. Buckeyes (2-1) - Laughed and Lost to Miami 6-24

Now that it's Tuesday, people are making funny graphs about how bad Ohio State was in their loss to Miami.  Also that Bauserman (OSU's QB) was seen laughing on the sideline well into the debacle.  Bauserman went 2-14 for 14 yards; and though both teams had two turnovers Ohio State could not make their 174 collective rushing yards and 25% 3rd down efficiency equate to anything but field goals.  It seems they've returned to Classic Big-Ten football.  They play host to the Mighty Colorado Buffaloes, and are preparing to be booed by their own fans, since they had no fans in Miami to boo them.

Washington St. Cougars (2-1) - Lost to San Diego St. 24-42

Yet another team that thought they could win by committing 4 turnovers.  Wazzu had an efficient passing game (8.8 avg and 3 TD) and an abysmal rushing game (4.4 yard avg for 83 yards for their two leading rushers).  Sand State spread their passing attack around (4 receivers with 4 catches each) and knew to run forward with the ball (Ronnie Hillman 32 carries for 191 yards and 4 TD).  They have the week off to lick their wounds before traveling to Boulder.

Stanford Cardinal (3-0) - Beat Arizona 37-10

In their first Pac-12 game, Stanford started slowly (same as last week) but persevered and overcame a pitiable opponent (same as last week) to put up excellent offensive numbers for the Andrew-Luck-for-Heisman Campaign (same as last week: 20 of 31 for 325 yards and 2 TD).I'm interested to see what architecture school is like for a star football player. How often do you think he's in the architecture building for 48 hours straight?  The 6th Ranked Cardinal also have the week off, but host UCLA the week following.

Washington Huskies (2-1) - Lost to Referees Nebraska 38-51

I'm sorry; you give up 3 turnovers and allow Nebraska to rush for over 300 yards? You're not going to win.  U-dub's Keith Price completed 57% of his passes for 274 yards, but gave away 2 INT's.  Halftime was Washington's undoing as in the 3rd quarter they were stopped on 4th down inside the redzone.  Nebraska instead scored 24 unanswered points and only after the game was out of reach did UW again start to score.  They next host Cal to see who will play kid-brother to Oregon and Stanford in the North.

Oregon Ducks (2-1) - Beat Missouri St 56-7

This was the other pushover game of the week, and Oregon's offensive statistics show it.  681 total yards with 204! rushing yards for LaMichael James.  Curious to see is Oregon's 9 penalties for 81 yards: they only had 8 penalties in the prior two games combined.  They'll have to fix it with sweat in their eyes, as they travel to heat-stroke stadium to take on Arizona.

Arizona St. Sun Devils (2-1) - Lost to Illinois 14-17

Everyone was asking what would happen when Brock Osweiler was repeatedly sacked in a game.  The answer is this: 25 for 45 with 2 INT's and a TD.  He still took 256 passing yards, but their RB Cameron Marshall was largely controlled, he only gained 69 yards rushing.  ASU took a lot of penalties (like last week), 8 for 91 yards. They cannot repeat those mistakes when they host USC, or they will lose again.

USC Trojans (3-0) - Beat Syracuse 38-17

Is Syracuse a cupcake team? I can never remember.  Regardless, the Trojans made them look like one (remember, USC only beat We-Lose-To-New-Mexcio-State-Minnesota by 2 points) this week.  Was it the 2,600 mile travel? Maybe it was Matt Barkley going 26-39 (66%) for 324 yards (an 8.3 avg) to get 5 freaking touchdowns and Pac-12 player of the week honors.  Interestingly the Trojans were docked 7 times for 70 yards. In their upcoming game against Arizona State, maybe they can see who can be penalized more, and declare the winner that way.

Arizona Wildcats (1-2) - Lost to Stanford 10-37

Poor Arizona; a 76% completion percentage for QB Nick Foles wasn't enough to overcome having become a caricature of the old Pac-10 stereotype: Pass first, rush and defense maybe.  They spread the ball out well (5 receivers with 4 or more catches) but it's a lesson in offensive imbalance.  And also kinda being crappy.  They host Oregon, and at least can legitimately say that things might get better for them come October*

*probably not, though.

UCLA Bruins (1-2) - Lost to Texas 20-49

Now you know why UCLA officials are invoking Martin Luther King in their opposition to a Pac-16.  They've seen the future, and they don't like how it sounds.  The burnt orange jackboot of Malcolm Brown slamming 110 rushing yards into their backs while the second McCoy to play in the Rose Bowl threw 2 TDs and completed 80% of his passes*.  Not to mention that UCLA's starting QB Rick Neuheisal Kevin Prince completed the same number of passes to his team as to the other: 3.  3-7 for 26 yards and 3 INTs.  The UCLA rushing attack was a stifled effort, Johnathan Franklin and Derrick Coleman combined for 22 carries and 105 yards.  4 total turnovers and a Rick Neuheisal outburst later, they're vying for worst team in the Pac-12, and travel to Oregon State to prove it once and for all.

*12 for 15, but still.

Utah Utes (2-1) - Beat BYU 54-10

Beginning with a recovered fumble in the endzone and ending 6 more BYU turnovers later, Utah delivered the kick-to-the-junk that all teams wish upon any true rival.  Utah's Trevor Reilly was honored as Pac-12 player of the week. He usually plays Linebacker, but subbed in as a Defensive End and the numbers say the rest: 2 sacks, 3 tackles for loss, 3 forced fumbles; one of which he recovered on BYU's 6 yard line while the game was still close.  The Ute's offense was fairly balanced, 242 on the ground and 239 in the air, but JOSEPH TAPDANCING SMITH did Reilly really mess up BYU's back-end...  Every team the Utes play will have to scheme against him, starting with Washington the week after next.

***Oregon St. Beavers (0-2)*** Mercifully the Beavers had the week off. This week they host UCLA in a game dubbed the 'Desperation Bowl.'  It is a stinky cologne.

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