Colorado Buffaloes Vs. Arizona State Sun Devils: Key Match-Ups

Doug Pensinger - Getty Images

If the Colorado Buffaloes hope to come out of their game against the Arizona Sun Devils victorious, there are a few matchups they're going to need to win.

I'm tired, folks. I've had a rough Fall when it comes to sports. Both my Buffaloes and my Dallas Cowboys have struggled this year. My Texas Rangers had a teamwide slump over the final two months of the year that was difficult to watch. And then, on the one weekend that neither of my Football teams play, they lose the division on the final day of the season (after leading it since the third game) and then lose the wildcard play-in game. Oy. I'm tired. My teams are killing me. And I'd really love for that to change.

Let's see what Colorado needs to do on Thursday to help me with my sports problem.

Follow the jump to see what riverdancing and being a defensive technical Intern have in common!

Offense:

  • Colorado's Wide Receivers vs. ASU's possibly suspect Secondary - I say 'possibly' because there's a very good chance they're actually just fine, but hopefully they're in the mistake-making mood on Thursday. It's a talented group, but one that has been susceptible to lapses and not always playing together. I know we don't have an all-star group at wide receiver, but they have made a few plays, and a guy like Gerald Thomas might put on a show for the nat'l audience. We'll definitely need him (or someone) to this week.
  • Alex Lewis, Daniel Munyer & Jack Harris vs. Will Sutton & Co. - I don't like to single out guys one defense, but sometimes one player is playing that well. And at DL, there doesn't seem to be anyone in the country that is playing like Sutton has so far this season. The Interior of our offensive line is not going to have an easy day, so hopefully they've spent this week figuring out how to successfully double-team opponents. Sutton deserves one every time we drop back to pass. The rest of the ASU defense is not a bad group, but this guy demands the attention he has been getting.
  • Jordan Webb, Christian Powell and Tony Jones vs. The Injury Bug - These guys need to get healthy. That is all.
Defense:
  • Ray Polk vs. What He's Been Up To While Injured - He needs to step up like he never has before. Our secondary has some talented pieces, but it's a group that ends up running around like a bunch of chickens with no heads. Polk needs to be the head. He needs to be a leader, he needs to be a coach out on the field, he needs to be a better player than he has to this point in his career. He needs to have spent a ton of time in the film-room while healing up. It's possible that those things can happen, and it's possible that, if those things happen, our defense plays much better. And we desperately need that.
  • The Colorado Linebackers vs. Showing Up - I'm disappointed in this group so far this season. Doug Rippy didn't look 100% in his limited time back, so hopefully we get some effective Rippy soon, and Jon Major hasn't looked sharp or fast. Derrick Webb and Paul Vigo have made great plays, but also big mistakes, and overall this unit needs to improve. There is talent in this group, but they haven't been playing up to it. I still believe that Brian Cabral is a great linebackers coach, so hopefully these guys will get it all figured out.
  • The Colorado Front Seven vs. ASU's Offensive Front - We have no shot if they're able to run against us, so we need all of those players up front to force the redshirt freshman, Taylor Kelly to beat us. He's definitely capable of beating us, but if Cameron Marshall and the other running backs are able to pound the ball against the Buffaloes, we'll have no shot to be in this game at all.
Special Teams Note:
  • I'll keep saying it, but this unit needs to do something big for us. It would be great if we could have an advantage in field position in this one.
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