When looking at a team with just one victory more than halfway through the season, three key areas will likely tailor the same results: time of possession is worse than the opponent, the turnover margin is in the negative, and defensively the team is a disaster.
Colorado actually leads in time of possession over the opponents. That could possibly be due to how bad the defense is. They held Colorado State to only 22 points (for the record, that’s the highest point total the Rams have had in their 1-6 season so far), but every other opponent has scored 30 or more points. Fresno State hung the highest point total in a 69-14 blowout that could be the worst nationally televised broadcast of a football game since Texas went Godzilla on them 70-3. That was the 2005 Big 12 Championship in Houston with the Longhorns en route to a national title.
Statistically, the Buffaloes are absolutely dreadful. They rank worst in total defense (489 yards/game), scoring defense (42.6 points/game), and passing defense (316.6 yards/game). If there’s anything good to say, they rank eighth in the conference in rushing defense. That’s obviously Oregon’s calling card, but Colorado still gives up 172.43 yards a game.
For Colorado fans, one thing to look forward to is how the defense evolves. It’s very young, and all the top players are juniors or younger with the exception of senior outside linebacker Jon Major and senior defensive lineman Will Pericak who combine for 57 total tackles (and six tackles for loss). Pericak will likely be the biggest factor to try and stop Oregon’s rushing attack. Considering they haven’t seen the likes of Marcus Mariota, Kenjon Barner, or De’Anthony Thomas, it’s going to be near impossible. As long as the attempts are there (and you aren’t Colorado State), it’s not hard to pick up over 200 yards rushing like Fresno State, UCLA, and Arizona State did with 38 or more attempts.
Want more on Colorado? Read the offensive scouting report here.
Brian Spaen is the lead editor for Autzen Zoo. See his banter with other FanSided writers and love for his favorite west coast professional teams by following him on Twitter.