The home game will come at a much needed time for the Cougars after they dropped two embarrassing games in back-to-back weeks against UCLA and Utah, had a bye, and will head to Tempe to take on Arizona State this weekend. The Cougars will then head on the road again to take on Oregon and California after Colorado.
Colorado (3-2) has been involved in close games since their season-opening victory against Colorado State as they have had four straight games decided by 7 points or less including two overtime games. They will head to Eugene to take on the Ducks this weekend before visiting Pullman.
The matchup between the two has been one sided for the past two years as the Cougs have outscored the Buffaloes 59-7. They have also won three of the last four meetings with two victories being in Pullman.
Memphis vs. Tulane landed the same 4:00 p.m. PT time slot and also got the “ESPN2 or ESPNU” treatment. The ESPN family of networks are more than likely waiting to see the outcomes of this weekends game before deciding if #23 Memphis or the Cougs will land the ESPN2 spot.Starting running back CJ Verdell, who left with a sprained ankle after producing 63 yards of offense (46 yards rushing, 17 receiving) in the 17-7 win over the Bears, returned to practice Monday and is expected to play against Colorado.
Starting defensive end Gus Cumberlander, who was carted off the field after suffering a serious left knee injury, is out of the remainder of the season.
The 13th-ranked Ducks (4-1, 2-0) host the Buffaloes (3-2, 1-1) on Friday night at Autzen Stadium (7 p.m., Fox Sports 1).“CJ practiced today and he looked pretty good,” coach Mario Cristobal said at his Monday news conference. “He looked a lot better than what I expected. I didn’t know exactly what to think coming into today, so feel good about him on (Friday).”
Co-starter Travis Dye had 15 carries for 81 yards (5.4 yards per attempt) against Cal’s stout defense but lost two fumbles in the first half.
Cyrus Habibi-Likio added nine carries for 37 yards and scored the go-ahead touchdown with 1:38 remaining in the third quarter.Cristobal said Darrian Felix, who has been “nicked up a little bit” but still contributing on special teams, could also get some carries against Colorado.After Saturday’s disappointing loss to Arizona, the fallout should be expected. The Colorado Buffaloes opened as a 22-point underdog against the #14 Oregon Ducks (4-1).
Colorado has suffered all sorts of injuries to Arizona State and Arizona in their last two games. They have a short week against Oregon (Friday night game), travel to Eugene, and have to deal with Autzen Stadium’s tough environment. The Ducks are pretty good, too, as they have star QB Justin Herbert leading the offense, and a strong defense that’s allowing 9.8 points per game this season.
If there’s great news for Colorado, it’s that a lot of their injured players will be back. The offense should get back Laviska Shenault Jr., as well as KD Nixon and Jalen Harris; meanwhile, Mustafa Johnson, Mikial Onu and Aaron Maddox are all possible returns. They’re still banged up, but it shouldn’t be a skeleton crew like it was against Arizona.
It’s also worth noting that this 22-point spread is quite big for what should be a high-scoring game. Colorado can score, with or without their star players, so they should test the Ducks more than Stanford or Cal’s putrid offenses. Oregon should also be able to score — and they will most likely score more than CU — but despite having Herbert, their offense hasn’t looked great against the three Group of 5 teams they’ve faced.The season’s in its very early phases, but the Oregon Ducks sit in the driver’s seat of the Pac-12 North.
By virtue of outstanding defensive showings against Stanford and Cal, Oregon’s 2-0 in Pac-12 play. Meanwhile, the Ducks handed both the Cardinal and Golden Bears their second conference losses. With Washington State dropping games to UCLA and Utah out of the South, and Washington suffering setbacks against Cal and Stanford, Oregon holds a two-game lead over everyone but, remarkably, Oregon State.
The road to Levi’s Stadium remains quite long, however, with the first potential pitfall looming Friday night at Autzen Stadium. The Colorado Buffaloes come to town for the first time since 2016, already boasting a conference road victory over a Top 25 team.
The Buffs’ defeat of Arizona State on Sept. 21 is arguably the high watermark of head coach Mel Tucker’s young tenure at Colorado. His team also scored a marquee win Sept. 7 over former Oregon offensive coordinator Scott Frost and Nebraska.