The Colorado Buffaloes made a slight staff shake-up before today’s game. The offensive line coach was fired on Monday and replaced by an analyst. Just in time for Colorado’s offense to face the best pass rusher in the country, Kavon Thibodeaux. Well, after Saturday’s game, it’s safe to say the Buffs made the right call and should have made it much sooner.
The game started as the last few games have for the Buffs. Oregon jumped to a quick 14-0 lead after marching easily on this Buff defense, sans Nate Landman. The offense looked anemic as ever, every bit the country-worst unit we have seen recently.
The Buffs started to find some success! Brendon Lewis, when given a clean pocket, was dealing STRIKES all day. Alex Fontenot and Jarek Broussard, appearing together in the backfield for the first time all year, both found some room against Oregon. Brenden Rice had a nice breakout game against a talented Duck secondary. For a while, near the end of the first half and throughout the second half, the Buffaloes looked like a college-football level offense, something that has not happened since the UNC game.
The defense was another story. The vaunted Oregon offensive line had their way with the Buffs on defense and they ran wild. Anthony Brown barely missed a throw, often finding his receivers wide open. With no Nate Landman in the middle, Quinn Perry stepped up to the plate and he didn’t quite have the juice. It was nice to see Jack Lamb and Robert Barnes back in action. Brown and the rotating cast of Duck running backs abused the lack of speed from the linebacking corps and ran over the defensive backs all game.
It’s hard to feel encouraged about a 52-29 loss, but the Buffs getting 29 offensive points is a definite step forward. It seems that Lewis has finally settled a bit with some more consistent blocking in front of him. The Buffs have Oregon State at home next week.