"This season I think they had me listed at 165 or 170," Richardson said. "I was only 161 this season, 162 at the most. So I've already gained over 14 pounds in the last month. I've shown I can gain weight and on Sunday I feel like I can run with my weight."
Colorado: Sophomore Sefo Liufau is solid as the returning starter. He took some lumps last season but also flashed plenty of promise -- as both a player and leader. After him, there's junior college transfer Jordan Gehrke, a redshirt sophomore, the likely backup. Depth is a problem, at least this spring. As the Boulder Daily Camera noted, "Five quarterbacks have left the CU program either to transfer to other schools or give up the sport entirely since the start of spring football last year. A sixth completed his eligibility last season." That's why the Buffs added walk-on Trent Sessions to the roster. He worked with the equipment staff last year.
Liufau finished 2013 with 1,779 yards and 12 touchdowns, and he was impressive in a loss at UCLA where he completed 25-of-36 pass attempts for 247 yards. However, Liufau also ended the season with at least one interception in each of the Buffs' final four games and completed less than 55 percent of his attempts in three of the last four.
True, the 2013 offensive statistics were an improvement over the dreadful numbers posted in 2012, but that is not saying much. The Buffs were actually lucky in 2013 when it came to the offensive line, as Colorado went the entire season with the same starting lineup. Perilously thin in the depth chart, Colorado fielded the same starting lineup 12 times last fall: Jack Harris, left tackle; Kaiwi Crabb, left guard; Gus Handler, center; Daniel Munyer, right guard; and Stephane Nembot, right tackle.
"He’s probably the hardest worker on the team," Walters said. "When other guys are winded and bending over [during conditioning], he’s the one holding them up, getting them to the next station. He’s at the front of the line in gassers. "He just has that chip on his shoulder to prove he can be a great player."
Brandin Cooks, Oregon State: 4.33/16 reps
Paul Richardson, Colorado: 4.40/did not lift
Shaquelle Evans, UCLA: 4.51/13 reps
Josh Huff, Oregon: 4.51/14 reps
Marqise Lee, USC: 4.52/did not lift
Yes, MacIntyre and his staff can promote the progress made by the team in his first season. They can sell CU’s beautiful campus, its academic reputation, the mountains and resorts. But all that wouldn’t mean much to a recruit and his parents if they have to wonder about MacIntyre’s longevity as the Buffs’ coach.
"We've been very impressed with Coach MacIntyre's values, his personality, his character, and it's been very impressive to me how the team has responded to the coach and his culture, the culture he wishes to establish," said Regent Jim Geddes, R-Sedalia. "He has mechanisms that clearly are being successful already. I think this was more a vote of confidence in the coach."
At No. 26, Colorado continues to appear in solid position to earn an NCAA Tournament bid for the third consecutive year. However, the Buffs have challenges ahead. They will play their final three regular-season games on the road — Saturday at Utah, March 5 at Stanford, March 8 at California — before the March 12-15 Pac-12 Tournament in Las Vegas.
"My hat goes off to Arizona," said Boyle. "They whipped us tonight in every which way you can whip a team. Our fans and our seniors deserve better than they got tonight and for that I am truly sorry. It was a disappointing performance by our team and I have to look square in the mirror on that, as their coach. I didn’t do a very good job tonight."
"It's a road game, so you want to have that week," CU junior Askia Booker said after Saturday's loss. "Road games, those are the toughest, especially in the Pac-12. "We're going to take some days off and people are going to get in the gym and we're going to watch a lot of film. We're going to be ready for next Saturday against Utah, I guarantee it."
Colorado 20-8 (9-6) Good wins: Kansas, Arizona State, Harvard, UCSB Seed: 9-10 Toughest remaining game: at Stanford 3/5 The Buffaloes have a lot of wins, but only just got their first win in-conference over a team I see getting into the tournament over Arizona State last weekend, so they haven't done much lately. They finish the regular season with a game at Utah and a trip to the Bay Area schools and they need to win at least one to avoid getting onto the wrong side of the bubble and putting a ton of pressure on themselves going into the Pac-12 Tournament.
Buffs fans exuded team pride at the University of Colorado's Coors Events Center today, yelling, dancing, and cheering as the backdrop for ESPN's weekly Saturday basketball preview. The sportscasters — Rece Davis, Digger Phelps and Jay Williams — reported from the court while spectators went nuts behind them. Doors opened at 6 a.m., and spirits were high despite the early start time.
This performance from the Buffs will only add heat to this budding rivalry, at least from the Colorado perspective. Whether the Buffs meet the Wildcats next in the Pac-12 tournament in March or they have to wait until next year, they are going to want to redeem themselves. Rivalries generally are made over time with a lot of ingredients added to create hard feelings and ill will or just a general dislike. Butt-kickings are among those ingredients.
When they woke up Thursday, the CU men (20-7, 9-5) were 2½ games behind first-place Arizona, their next opponent, with four left in the regular season. The Buffs are no longer on the tournament bubble, according to ESPN's Joe Lunardi. They're good for a No. 9 seed. When was the last time a program with as little history as Colorado lost an NBA lottery pick to injury midway through the season and was still in the hunt for a major conference title heading into the last week of February?