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What would the Colorado Buffaloes look like in NCAA Football 19?

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We created the Buffaloes roster in NCAA Football 14, the last edition on the iconic video game series.

NCAA Football: California at Colorado Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

If it still existed, NCAA Football 19 would have been released this week. The video game dynasty ended in 2013 when EA Sports and the NCAA stopped making the game due to amateurism issues (this is a good read on why). Because the NCAA refuses to pay athletes or let them be paid for their likeliness being in a game, we have to settle for merely imagining what the newest game would have looked like. That’s why Jack and Sam created the entire 2018 Colorado Buffaloes roster on NCAA Football 14.

We didn’t actually create the roster on the game, but it’s mostly because I made the entire 2016 roster and didn’t want to delete that. So instead we made a spreadsheet for the CU roster, rated the players in each attribute, then entered in all those ratings onto the blank canvas of the Rutgers football team. The player’s overall rating was determined by the game, then fudged a little by us to make it seem more in line with our own expectations.

Our rating system is obviously flawed — Jack’s attribute ratings of Jonathan Van Diest had him at an 88 overall in the game, which is, uh, not accurate — but it was the best idea we had.

Anyway, here is the roster. It’s broke up into position groups with a bit of analysis in each section. If you’re on mobile, apologies if the format is clunky.

Quarterbacks

Player Overall Throw Power Throw Accuracy Awareness Speed Acceleration Agility Strength
Player Overall Throw Power Throw Accuracy Awareness Speed Acceleration Agility Strength
Steven Montez 86 92 80 76 80 78 78 76
Sam Noyer 77 76 81 75 76 79 80 62
Tyler Lytle 76 79 85 70 65 66 68 61

No surprise, it’s all Steven Montez here for the Buffs. We gave him conservative ratings on his throwing accuracy and his awareness, but he still came in at a solid 86 overall. It could be argued that his ratings are inflated by his physical attributes, which are tantalizing, and by his running attributes, which I did customize in the game but didn’t include in this table. No matter, Montez is an extremely talented quarterback who has the tools to be a star.

Running Backs

Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Vision Break Tackle Trucking Elusiveness Stiff Arm Juke Spin Carrying Catching Pass Blocking
Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Vision Break Tackle Trucking Elusiveness Stiff Arm Juke Spin Carrying Catching Pass Blocking
Travon McMillian 85 86 84 84 75 84 83 84 82 80 80 78 79 83 72 75
Alex Fontenot 79 85 82 87 69 70 82 78 72 83 73 82 83 77 71 66
Beau Bisharat 77 82 80 75 80 74 74 82 79 77 79 73 70 78 63 78
Kyle Evans 75 80 85 84 68 69 79 73 64 79 62 79 82 75 76 67

After Phillip Lindsay graduated, we all knew the Buffaloes would be hurting to replace his production. Beau Bisharat is fine in his role and Alex Fontenot will be fantastic a year from now, but it was critical for the Buffs to have found Travon McMillian as a graduate transfer. The former Virginia Tech Hokie will be an essential piece of the team as a physical runner to contrast the team’s pace-and-space offense.

Wide Receivers and Tight Ends

Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Route Catching Specacular Catch Catch in Traffic Jumping Release Run Blocking
Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Route Catching Specacular Catch Catch in Traffic Jumping Release Run Blocking
Juwann Winfree 91 88 90 86 75 85 90 87 84 88 83 88 73
Laviska Shenault 87 90 87 85 78 80 82 84 93 83 89 90 68
Kabion Ento 85 87 86 83 63 82 85 87 89 82 90 83 70
KD Nixon 84 87 97 93 60 64 80 83 82 79 87 77 54
Tony Brown 84 93 84 82 70 83 86 83 88 80 80 80 63
Chris Bounds 83 76 78 79 80 82 81 82 75 78 74
Jay MacIntyre 83 79 89 82 59 85 95 90 78 83 70 78 59
Darrion Jones 77 74 75 78 83 77 76 78 80 76 77

This goes to show just how stacked the Buffaloes’ receiving corps is. We have Winfree as the second best player on the team at a sparkling 91 overall. We also have Laviska Shenault as the fourth best Buffalo, which may seem a bit ridiculous because he has like 8 career catches, but we’re expecting him to break out this season. Away from those two, it looks like CU will have a battle royale to determine their depth chart as Kabion Ento, KD Nixon, Tony Brown and Jay MacIntyre are all roughly even.

Offensive Line and Tight Ends

Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Pass Block Run Block Impact Blocking
Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Pass Block Run Block Impact Blocking
Tim Lynott 86 63 80 74 92 85 84 88 87
Aaron Haigler 80 64 78 76 85 80 83 82 78
Josh Kaiser 79 60 82 78 78 85 80 85 75
Jake Moretti 83 65 81 71 90 73 82 87 84
William Sherman 79 64 76 69 83 78 76 84 87
Colby Pursell 79 63 83 72 80 85 85 80 82
Chris Bounds 83 76 80 81 80 82 70 82 79
Darrion Jones 77 74 75 80 83 74 67 75 81

Here, it looks like CU has an incredibly average offensive line. Aside from Tim Lynott, their clear best lineman (and probably underrated), Colorado have a rotation of solid but unspectacular linemen. The most promising seems to be Jake Moretti, the redshirt freshman who was a top-100 recruit coming out of Pomona (Arvada). Hopefully the offensive line will be improved with more experience and better health.

Defensive Line

Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Tackle Hit Power Finesse Moves Power Moves Block Shedding Play Recognition Pursuit
Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Tackle Hit Power Finesse Moves Power Moves Block Shedding Play Recognition Pursuit
Javier Edwards 81 59 65 60 93 74 70 86 75 82 81 77 78
Mustafa Johnson 80 67 76 73 84 70 78 84 79 80 83 70 76
Terrance Lang 80 73 75 74 86 70 78 82 74 80 83 74 79
Chris Mulumba 79 69 75 79 89 68 80 79 78 81 78 66 70
Israel Antwine 79 67 68 66 86 70 80 85 74 77 78 70 73
Jase Franke 77 66 65 63 85 72 74 80 72 75 80 70 72

This is probably Colorado’s weakest position group, but they're young and look fine on paper, especially because the game usually deflates the overall ratings of 3-4 defensive ends. Here the Buffs are led by Javier Edwards, who we think will be one of the most important players on the team. If you have a sharp eye, you will have noticed Edwards was an 86 overall in the embedded tweet, but only an 81 in this table. That’s because we knew Javier was going to see a tweet we tagged him, so we overrated him as a courtesy. If you’re reading this, Javier, we can settle this outside ... with a 5K race.

Linebackers

Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Tackle Hit Power Zone Coverage Man Coverage Block Shedding Play Recognition Pursuit Finess Moves Power Moves
Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Tackle Hit Power Zone Coverage Man Coverage Block Shedding Play Recognition Pursuit Finess Moves Power Moves
Rick Gamboa 88 73 70 73 78 97 85 81 84 70 81 94 91 67 68
Drew Lewis 86 84 90 86 79 74 82 85 80 83 78 75 80 84 77
Nate Landman 85 79 82 78 81 81 84 85 73 70 83 78 80 71 76
Davion Taylor 84 88 87 90 80 73 79 82 83 78 76 74 82 78 73
Jonathan Van Diest 84 78 86 86 84 82 84 84 65 65 83 80 79 74 79
Nu'umoto Falo 81 80 79 78 80 82 82 77 72 68 81 80 80 83 80
Jacob Callier 78 81 84 81 76 75 79 76 67 67 77 77 77 82 75
Alex Tchangam 79 83 86 73 87 70 76 84 61 69 83 70 84 75 89
Carson Wells 80 85 87 83 78 75 78 78 74 76 72 78 82 81 77

The linebackers’ stats are somewhat wonky because that was the one position group Jack had the most control over. You might laugh at Nate Landman and Jonathan Van Diest — both backups — being 85 and 84 overall players, but that’s after I decreased their ratings. Jack gets excited with these young linebackers (for good reason) and he may have gotten a bit ahead of himself here. But hey, he could look like a genius in a few months. Also of note, Nu’umoto Falo is only an 81 overall because the game doesn’t properly value 3-4 outside linebackers. The game thinks all OLBs play in the 4-3, so they look for pass coverage instead of pass rushing ability.

Defensive Backs

Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Man Coverage Press Coverage Zone Coverage Tackle Hit Power Catching Play Recognition Pursuit
Player Overall Speed Acceleration Agility Strength Awareness Man Coverage Press Coverage Zone Coverage Tackle Hit Power Catching Play Recognition Pursuit
Evan Worthington 92 90 91 90 76 89 81 80 89 86 82 75 84 87
Nick Fisher 86 83 88 82 75 86 75 74 80 84 78 73 88 86
Trey Udoffia 84 91 88 88 64 85 88 89 84 66 61 79 82 74
Delrick Abrams 80 87 85 83 61 78 89 90 70 81 63 72 76 80
Dante Wigley 80 87 87 85 71 79 83 87 78 70 68 72 77 75
Chris Miller 78 95 95 92 68 77 81 83 83 63 61 81 73 71
Kevin George 76 92 92 88 61 75 78 79 74 65 64 77 72 76

It shouldn’t surprise you that Evan Worthington rates out as the best player on the Buffaloes. As he proved last year, he’s a freak athlete with great vision of the field, and he uses that to be a force both in coverage and against the run. The ground he can cover is absurd and he’s always in the right position to make a great play. Nick Fisher is highly rated here, but it should be noted that strong safeties are always a bit overrated in the game; if you move an 86 overall strong safety to free safety, he falls to an 83 overall. This game also severely underrates cornerbacks, so even with great attributes, Trey Udoffia came in at an 80 overall, which we fudged into an 84. We gave similar boosts to Delrick Abrams and Dante Wigley, who are way better than 77 overall players. For reference, a couple years ago I made Chidobe Awuzie and gave him a 99 in man, zone and press coverage, and he was still just a 94 overall.

Special Teams

Player Overall Kick Power Kick Accuracy Awareness
Player Overall Kick Power Kick Accuracy Awareness
James Stefanou 85 86 89 84
Alex Kinney 86 87 90 85
Davis Price 80 93 72 73

This isn’t quite Mason Crosby pairing with Darragh O’Neill, but the Buffaloes have a really good combo of special teamers. Kinney is one of the best all-around punters in the Pac-12. Stefanou is one of the most accurate kickers in college football. Price, lastly, has a cannon and is superb on kickoffs. It’s nice to have a competent special teams after enduring the kicking misadventures of the Hawkins and Embree eras.

If you have any comments, critiques or general thoughts, let us know in the comments and we may implement changes on Sam’s PS3.