Last weekend was tough. Start to finish nothing went Colorado's way from missed field goals to an offense that could qualify for FEMA funds. It felt and looked as if CU had been dealt the knock-out punch that could send a young team spiraling straight into a 5 win season. At the beginning of this week, I was close to closing up shop on the 2008 Buffs and start previewing the 2009 season. But as the week went on and the more I analyzed this game, I am excited to report that the Buffs are going to win Saturday. I am back on the positivity train and it is heading into Lawrence, Kansas with a little mojo on its side. And this isn't some crazy claim without any empirical evidence. This claim is backed up by rock solid facts and if the Buffs have history on their side and follow my "Keys to the Game," CU will be 4 - 2 against Kansas State next week. Of course, if history hates CU like it did last week and the Buffs don't make good on my "Keys to the Game," well, 3 - 3 is looking the Buffs squarely in the face. You are probably wondering what "history" I am referring to. Well Buffs fans, join me on my magical time machine to 2007.
Specifically, October 27th, 2007...Where were you? I remember where I was. I had just gotten home from Wal-Mart. Yes, weird, I know but I remember. You know why? The Buffs were shellacking the 6 - 2 and heavily favored home team in Texas Tech by 14 points in first quarter. The Buffs went on to win by 5 in Lubbock that day. Why is the Texas Tech game significant? Because their are a plethora of parallels between the game coming up this Saturday and the one last October in Lubbock.
- The Buffs will be on the road in Lawrence, like they were in Lubbock 349 days ago. Keep reading, I promise the comparisons get better. I won't use the "both games where on a Saturday" or "both games were played in the month of October" link.
- The Buffs will be coming off a two game losing streak just like they were last year. Coach Dan Hawkins has not had a three game losing streak since November 6th, 2006 with Gary Barnett's players. Last year, the Buffs had three 2 game losing streaks. Each time Colorado was able to come back and win that third contest to avoid a three game slide.
See the rest after the jump...
- The Buffs were 13.5 point underdogs in Lubbock last year. Guess what I got the game at this morning? 13.5 points. Okay, maybe it was 14 but anyone who knows how to bet on college football bought that half point last year to bring it up to 14 points. For arguments sake, the point spread was two touchdowns.
- Texas Tech had QB Graham Harrell. Kansas has QB Todd Reesing. Both bona fide star quarterbacks in the Big 12. Both featured or feature a pass first, run second offense. Both quarterbacks at the time of playing CU were in the top 5 of every major passing ranking.
- Staying on the quarterbacks. In 2006, Graham Harrell had his worst statistical performance of the year against the Buffs, throwing for 144 yards less than his season average of 380 y/g with three interceptions. He then followed up his three interception performance in 2007 with four interceptions and again, his worst statistical game of the 2007 season. Last year, Todd Reesing had his worst statistical game of the season against the Buffs throwing for only 153 yards which was 137 short of his 290 y/g average. If history holds, expect Reesing to struggle mightily against the Buffs this weekend.
- Kansas is coming off a game against Iowa State where they lost the turnover margin by 2, the second time this year and third time in the past two years that Kansas has lost the turnover battle. The Texas Tech Red Raiders, the week before they played the Buffs last year, lost the turnover margin to the Missouri Tigers by 2. The next week against Colorado, the Buffs picked off that top 5 quarterback in Graham Harrell four times. The Kansas Jayhawks have lost two times in the last two years and could have lost last week. What is the common theme in those three games: it was the only three games in the past two years where Kansas lost the turnover battle. Win the turnover battle and CU wins this game. Fate is on their side with Kansas losing the turnover battle by 2 last week!
- Last year, Texas Tech had the worst rushing team in the NCAA, yes folks, 119th in the nation and last in the Big 12 averaging 59.3 yards/game. Kansas isn't that bad but is still dead last in the Big 12 in rushing. There is no question that the offense rests on Todd Reesing's arm and not the legs of the Kansas running backs. Kansas currently ranks 96th in total rushing offense against four bad opponents and South Florida, averaging 118 yards/game.
- Both games where early starts in the ten o'clock hour. Texas Tech came out sleep walking allowing the underdog Colorado team to jump out to a 14 - 0 lead before the Texas Tech offense got a dose of smelling salt from coach Mike Leach. The Buffs best be awake for the early start and try to catch the Jayhawks in sleep mode again. Most people think that Kansas will be awake considering they came out against Iowa State and almost dropped an egg. Reverse psychology tells me that Kansas thinks they are a group of bad mofo's who are so good that they only need to show up for a half to win the game. Look for a repeat sleep walk performance by Kansas and the Buffs to jump to an early lead...if history is on CU's side.
For your information, I will be contributing to the repeat of history and going to Wal-Mart between the hours of 9:00 am and 10:30 am, sacrificing the start of the Red River Rivalry for the fate of the Buffs. I suggest you all sit down and remember what you were doing at 10:00 am mountain time (Mountain Time is important, don't forget that) on October 27th, 2007. Only YOU can help repeat history.
Shoulder to Shoulder...Go Buffs!