2014 Pac-12 Positional Rankings - Defensive Backs: Ifo Ekpre-Olomu headlines Pac-12 defensive back rankings - Pacific Takes - Originally they had Jered Bell instead of Greg Henderson. Looks like someone pointed out that insanity.
9. Colorado (S Jered Bell, CB Greg Henderson, CB Kenneth Crawley, S Tedric Thompson) This might be the strongest unit on the board for the Buffaloes as they have a good amount of experience and talent here. There are no stars here, but Bell, Crawley and Henderson have a good amount of experience and their pass defense could really help the Buffs turn things around.
"I think you'll see more athleticism and speed overall on the field. Sometimes it might not be, 'Wow,' but I think we'll make more plays in special teams and will prevent more plays. I think that is where you will see it just overall team strength, speed and closing ability, our backups are better. I do think we have made big, big strides there."
Coach that needs to pick it up: Oregon State finished ahead of only Colorado in the 2014 Pac-12 class rankings and the Beavers are one of only two conference programs -- Utah is the other -- without a four-star commitment in the 2015 group. There certainly won’t be any hand-wringing from coach Mike Riley or his assistants at this point, as the Beavers always seem to do more with less and usually have a few significant recruits stashed away to avoid poaching from the bigger programs. Landing three-star tight end Matt Pistone a week ago could be the start of a recruiting push from the Beavers.
Mike MacIntyre: Wow. I think we can improve in a lot of areas. Specifically on the football field, we need to play better on third downs. That's not got to be unbelievable. You've just got to improve three or four percent from what you were last year. You get two more first downs per game and all of the sudden you're in a drive, going into the red zone, getting into the end zone. One more time per game. Two more times per game. A field goal. That's a big, drastic change. It changes momentum. There are little things. Red zone is an emphasis we have, third-down areas, we have. We need to definitely improve in those areas.
Top 15 Pac-12 fantasy football prospects for 2014: Marcus Mariota and Brett Hundley fight for top spot - Pacific Takes - Sefo Liufau listed in the "on the edge" section
Top Pac-12 players: Nos. 25-21 - Pac-12 Blog - ESPN - Now that you see that there are no Buffs in the bottom ten do you think there will be any at all?
But this is the first time we had the opportunity to play the game on a weeknight; fans still can enjoy their full holiday weekend, traffic heading into downtown Denver should be no different than usual, with no Rockies baseball game and the likelihood that many people will hit the roads out of town earlier in the day. We gained a national TV audience for the contest on Fox Sports 1 (Tim Brando’s debut play-by-play debut on the network at that) with virtually no other games on at the same time.
"I ruffle a lot of feathers, but I'm not afraid of that to induce change potentially," he said. "There are a lot of guys that can play here. I feel like sometimes all the tools are not presented to them like they could be, and I'm just trying to show them there's a different way to do things — a way to do it hard, to bust your (tail) every day and be proud of what you put down.
While CU received, by far, the fewest votes in the Pac-12 South, they still received relatively more than the lowly Cal Bears to stay out of worst-in-conference status. Of course, as the Bears are, again, expected to be one of the worst teams in all of the FBS, the distinction isn't all that notable, but I've committed to passive optimism, damnit, so I'm all-in on grasping at this straw.
The good news on offense for Chris Petersen as he takes over as the Washington head coach is that he has little to worry about when it comes to his offensive line. All five starters return, and four of them are seniors (in the "it figures" department, next year, when Washington will have to completely rebuild its offensive line, CU will not be on the schedule, as the Buffs drop Washington for the 2015 and 2016 seasons).
1, We saw both sides of rookie wide receiver Paul Richardson today. Richardson’s speed pops off the field, and you notice it right away. But the other side of Richardson, the side cautioning that he’s still a rookie and work in progress, also showed up. He got jammed a couple of times at the line of scrimmage, although on one of those plays he worked back toward the line of scrimmage after getting jammed and caught the pass. He also dropped a pass over the middle that hit him right in the hands.
The Dolphins added three players, including Seth Lobato, an undrafted free agent quarterback from Northern Colorado. The 23-year-old Lobato completed 56.6 percent of his passes in his collegiate career (637-of-1126), throwing 53 touchdowns. The Colts waived Lobato (6-6, 223) in June.
Most people have to pay to travel around the world. Not Austin Dufault. In fact, Dufault — a Killdeer High School and University of Colorado graduate — is getting paid to travel across Europe to play professional basketball. He has joined BC Souffelweyersheim in France for the 2014-15 season.