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Buff Bites: What is the ceiling for this Colorado offense?

How good can this Buffs offense become this season? Taking a look at where the Buffs stand in the Pac-12 hierarchy.

Doug Pensinger

Colorado_mediumBuffs Football!

What we learned in the Pac-12 - ESPN

Colorado has weapons: Trailing 31-20 on the road, the Buffs showed a little bit of fight in coming back and winning 41-38 over UMass. We're not calling them a bowl team (because they probably won’t be), but the offensive numbers from Sefo Liufau -- 26-of-42 for 318 yards and three touchdowns (one interception) -- were encouraging. Nelson Spruce’s performance of 10 catches for 145 yards and two scores was nice to see, as were rushing touchdowns from Christian Powell and Tony Jones.

For CU, Spruce and Liufau are building a winning chemistry - The Denver Post

"I've said that all along, he's just really good," CU coach Mike MacIntyre said of Spruce, a 6-foot-1, 195-pound junior who caught 55 passes as a sophomore.

"He catches everything, he competes, he understands how to play. If he gets on top of the (defensive back) the DB's not going to get back on top - like a good race car driver; get on top and they can't get by you, they finish, and that's what he does."

CU football: Mike MacIntyre sees Buffs making strides - Buffzone

"I thought we played extremely hard and we fit the run a lot, lot better this game, which was good for us," he said. "In the second half, except for the penalty-ridden drive, we pretty much dominated. If you look at all the stats and look at everything they did."

Colorado coach Mike MacIntyre says his team dominated UMass in second half: 'We should have scored over 60' | masslive.com

At the end of the day, Colorado was indeed the better team on the field at Gillette Stadium. No one from coach Mark Whipple on down would argue otherwise after surrendering a sizable lead like that.

CU football far from perfect in victory over UMassCU Independent

That said, there were some bright spots for the Buffaloes. They showed great resiliency in scoring 21 straight points in the third and fourth quarters to grab ahold of the lead after losing it. "It’s definitely easy to panic and give up. I’m really proud of the team for showing some heart and fighting," sophomore quarterback Sefo Liufau said about being down 31-20 in the third quarter.

Pac-12 helmet stickers: Week 2 - Pac-12 Blog - ESPN

Nelson Spruce, WR, Colorado: The Pac-12 blog thought Sefo Liufau had a strong game. And Spruce was a big reason he did. Spruce hauled in 10 catches for 145 yards and two touchdowns, including a 70-yarder that put Colorado ahead of UMass on its way to a 41-38 win.

Colorado Buffaloes football: Three takeaways from the UMass victory - Pacific Takes

Sefo Liufau is the perfect quarterback for this offense. Though it was against a team that is only in its third season as an FBS member, the Buffs' offense put up 474 yards on 89 plays, averaging over five yards a play.

CU Football: Running game gains ground - Buffzone

"We started getting to the second level better," coach Mike MacIntyre said. "That's where we were able to spurt some of those and squeeze through there. Their second level from the backside was getting there and we started double teaming better and chipping him, getting a piece of that guy and we had a better seam."

CU Buffs defense rises up during key fourth quarter vs. UMass - The Denver Post

One more bad quarter against UMass, and CU's defense would officially have become known as one of the nation's worst statistically. Instead, the Buffs are now 1-1 in this young season and can thank a defense that played a strong final 25 minutes in their 41-38 win over the Minutemen at Gillette Stadium.

CU football: Kickoff coverage woes return for Buffs - Buffzone

Massachusetts had 14 possessions in Saturday's game and while not all of them followed kickoffs, the Buffs' inability to consistently cover kickoffs well contributed to the Minutemen having an average starting field position of their 36-yard line. UMass averaged 23 yards per kickoff return in the game, which isn't a bad number, but the Buffs allowed returns of 43 and 34 yards and then twice gave the Minutemen the ball near midfield when squib kicks didn't work as planned.

Pac-12 football stats of the week: Stanford red zone pain, Oregon speed, WSU ground - Pacific Takes

There were six lead changes in Colorado's 41-38 win over UMass. The Buffs eventually distanced themselves from the Minutemen with 21 unanswered points, but they also had to overcome an incredible 12 penalties for 124 yards. An impressive road performance by Sefo Liufau (318 yards, three touchdowns) and big games by Nelson Spruce and Shay Fields did the job.

Pac-12 Power Rankings: Week 2 - Pac-12 Blog - ESPN

Out of the cellar. A road win against an FBS team will do that. The Buffs showed a little bit of grit in overcoming an 11-point deficit in the third quarter en route to a 41-38 win over UMass. The Sefo Liufau-to-Nelson Spruce connection looked pretty, and there are plenty of signs to be encouraged. But also a lot of room for improvement (i.e., kickoff coverage).

Pacific Takes Pac-12 Power Rankings week two: Cal climbs into top half of the North - Pacific Takes

The Buffs barely winning against woeful helped their record but not so much their cred. Still, any wins are huge for the Buffs right now.

MacIntyre Pleased, Confident As Buffs Eye ASU - CUBuffs.com - Official Athletics Web site of the University of Colorado

Despite a developing special teams and MacIntyre’s belief that "we left about 17 more points out there that could have been good plays," he knows that a win is a win and is confident that Saturday’s win over UMass was chock-full of "big, big turning moments."

ASU Football: First look at the Colorado Buffaloes - House of Sparky

It should be a strong test of the Sun Devils' passing game. Keep in mind the opponents, but no one receiver has tallied more than five receptions for 83 yards against this group so far this season. Watch to see if these corners have success early against Kelly, because if the tempo gets disrupted the Sun Devils struggle to find the end zone. The run game might prove to be crucial and the maroon and gold could have to lean on D.J. Foster again Saturday.

Colorado_mediumBuffs Basketball!

Still no timetable on Detroit Pistons' Spencer Dinwiddie, but he's feeling better | Detroit Free Press | freep.com

"In recent weeks I’ve been feeling like I can do all the things I need to do," Dinwiddie said recently. "I feel good. I feel like I can do a lot. "Like I said, there’s no timetable as far as when I’m officially going to play. I would say in the last couple of weeks I’ve been feeling really, really good."