"We stopped Carey pretty good," said head coach Mike MacIntyre. "Just disappointed we didn’t do a better job against (quarterback, B.J.) Denker. He did a good job. He threw the ball better than I’ve ever seen him throw in every game I’ve ever watched him play. So he really came through."
No, CU’s problem is with the rest of the Pac-12. The Pac-12 right now is just too damn good. After the realignment dust settled a few years ago, there were arguments that the newly rearranged conferences gave several leagues the claim to being the No.2 conference behind the SEC. Fans of the Pac-12 had to argue with fans of the Big Ten and Big 12 as to which conference was the second-best in the country. Now, the status of second-best is all but ceded to the Pac-12, with the Buffs’ new conference making inroads on the kingpin itself, the Southeastern Conference.
In fact, most arguments advanced in making the case that the Buffs have made progress under MacIntyre have come off as either backhanded compliments or condescension — or both. For example, the Buffaloes look as if they know what they're doing, as opposed to the frequent chaos under Jon Embree's ill-constructed coaching staff in 2011 and '12. And they don't quit. Unable to mitigate the talent gap in their third season in the Pac-12, the Buffs get worn down — and, ultimately, beaten down.
Had the Buffs actually made it work and scored the touchdown, it would have made a dramatic difference heading into the final 18 minutes and MacIntyre would have looked pretty smart. Yet, with a team that has now lost 12 consecutive conference games, MacIntyre should have taken the sure points and given his team a chance.
If you have DirecTV and are upset that you can't get the Pac-12 Networks, you'll stay angry for a while. Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott said Saturday that the satellite company and conference remain at an impasse in negotiations. "There hasn't been movement in a long time," Scott said before Colorado's game with Arizona. "We've reached out to try and engage them in conversation but there's really been no movement."
Receiver Paul Richardson (sprained ankle) and tailback Michael Adkins (concussion) were both injured Saturday. Both were listed as being day-to-day, and according to CU, that status did not change on Sunday.
Carey keeps rolling: The leading rusher against Colorado was not Ka’Deem Carey, surprisingly enough. But Carey did rush for 119 yards and four touchdowns, giving him 10 straight games of at least 100 yards dating back to last year’s game against Colorado. It was quarterback B.J. Denker who carried 15 times for 192 yards. The Buffs played this one tough for a while, even leading 13-10 with five minutes left in the half. But the Wildcats struck hard and fast with two late-half touchdowns, and it was game over from there. You can get the sense that this is a different Colorado team than last season. And Paul Richardson is simply outstanding (seven catches, 132 yards, one score). The results just aren’t showing up in the win column. Arizona broke through with its second straight conference win and will look to become bowl eligible next week against Cal.
The Buffaloes are allowing 475.4 yards per game, 112th nationally and just under last year's school-record 488.5. They're allowing 207.4 rushing yards per game, a slight improvement from last year's 226.0. CU's pass efficiency defense is much improved (135.5 rating, compared with 173.6 a season ago, primarily due to victories over two lower-division teams: Central Arkansas and Charleston Southern. But, in the Pac-12, the Buffaloes (3-4 overall, 0-4) are getting carved up like day-old pumpkins.
At 3-4 (0-4 Pac-12), the Buffaloes need to win three of their final five games to reach bowl eligibility. Facing back-to-back road games at No. 17 UCLA (5-2, 2-2) and Washington (5-3, 2-3) in the next two weeks, CU has its back against the wall.
11. Colorado: The Buffs put up a good fight against Arizona, but they were unable to get key stops on defense. Things don't get any easier, with back-to-back road trips to UCLA and Washington coming up.
Thomas is all grown up; he’s 6-7 and 220 pounds and feeling fairly fearless about taking it inside. The hops have developed nicely, too. "I’ve been working on my legs a lot and I’m a lot more athletic now," he said. Chances to score, both inside and beyond the arc, and do so much more are rapidly approaching – and Thomas can’t wait.
"Chucky was an amazing player," Roberson said. "But I think we're better. We're deep at all positions. Everybody will step up, and I feel in a way it's allowing everyone to show what we can do. We're not going to have Chucky running in while we're boxing everybody out so she can get the ball. We're actually going to have to grab it ourselves."