Utah Utes (1-2) at Colorado Buffaloes (4-0), Saturday, 10:05 a.m. MST, FOX, 850 AM
Three issues to look at
1. Go Bruins! Colorado’s sole likelihood of creating the Pac-12 championship sport is a win in opposition to Utah and a Southern California loss to UCLA. If No. 21 CU and No. 15 USC each end undefeated, the Trojans get the nod by advantage of getting extra division wins. The Buffs final reached the convention title sport in 2016 (a 41-10 loss to Washington).
2. Broussard is finest. CU’s Jarek Broussard grew to become the primary participant to hurry for 100-plus yards in his first 4 profession video games in program historical past, establishing himself because the Pac-12’s high working again. He averaged a whopping 12 yards per carry in final week’s win over Arizona to succeed in 301 on the bottom. Broussard is a big purpose why the Buffs are undefeated.
3. Defensive muscle. The Buffs’ protection has allowed fewer than 20 factors in two consecutive video games for less than the second time for the reason that begin of the 2017 season. It’s a credit score to the scheme of defensive coordinator Tyson Summers and the play of defensive captain Nate Landman. The senior inside linebacker has recorded double-digit tackles in 18 profession video games.
Who has the sting?
When Utah runs
Freshman Utes working again Ty Jordan had a breakout efficiency final week with 167 yards speeding and a landing. However Utah has solely three speeding scores over three video games performed this season. CU’s run protection gave up 268 yards on the bottom in opposition to Arizona, however held stout in earlier video games in opposition to San Diego State and Stanford. The Buffs’ entrance seven just isn’t a legal responsibility this season.
When Utah passes
Utes quarterback Jake Bentley, a South Carolina graduate switch, has extra interceptions (4) than landing passes (three) this season. However CU can’t sleep on the deep-threat potential of broad receiver Bryan Thompson, who averages 22.6 yards per catch. The Buffs’ secondary has carried out properly limiting massive passes after giving up 300-plus yards by the air in opposition to each UCLA and Stanford.
When the Buffs run
Broussard’s potential to run with energy between the tackles and escape defenders with blazing pace is what retains defensive coordinators up at night time. It’s additionally a credit score to CU’s improved offensive line play. Utah’s run protection has allowed at the very least one landing per sport with Oregon State totaling 133 yards on the bottom final week. Broussard is in line for one more massive sport.
When the Buffs move
CU quarterback Sam Noyer handed for simply 92 yards on 12 completions with a pair of interceptions in opposition to Arizona. It marked Noyer’s first sport this season and not using a passing landing. Utah’s protection has mixed for 5 interceptions this season whereas holding all three of its opponents to lower than 300 yards by the air.
CU placekicker Evan Worth is 5-of-6 on field-goal makes an attempt this season. Utes placekicker Jadon Redding is 4-of-Four on area targets with three conversions in a win in opposition to Oregon State. Utah broad receiver Britain Covey additionally returned a punt 64 yards for a landing. The Buffs haven’t moved the needle within the return sport.
Sean Keeler, columnist: CU 27, Utah 26
Sam Noyer — SAM NOYER! — tucks and runs the Buffs over the road. Cinderella wears gold. Larry Scott turns purple.
Matt Schubert, deputy sports activities editor: CU 24, Utah 20
As Mike MacIntyre as soon as instructed us, Buffaloes at all times stroll into the storm. And this time they even come out with a program-altering victory.
Kyle Fredrickson, beat author: Utah 24, CU 21
An unpleasant reality: CU lacks a top quality win that makes the Buffs actual Pac-12 title contenders. The Buffs, whereas bettering beneath first-year coach Karl Dorrell, aren’t fairly there but.