Despite having the No. 1 cornerback in the last two recruiting classes and a safety room laden with veteran transfers, as BuffZone’s Brian Howell notes, the Colorado football secondary has been “exposed” during the 2023 season.
“Early on, the Buffs were solid and picked off six passes in the first three games,” Howell prefaced before saying, “Pac-12 quarterbacks have shredded them through the air, though, and the Buffs give up more passing yards (316.3 per game) than any other team in the conference.
“It’s one thing to get exposed by Heisman Trophy-candidate quarterbacks Bo Nix (Oregon) and Caleb Williams (USC). It’s another when it happens against Arizona State’s Trenton Bourguet and Stanford’s Ashton Daniels, who have a combined nine TD passes this year – five of them against CU. Bourguet, a third-stringer coming into the year, threw for 335 yards and his only TD of the season against CU. Daniels threw for 396 yards and four TDs against CU, while accumulating just 829 yards and four TDs in the other six games he’s played combined.”
Colorado football learning hard recruiting lesson on the defensive side of the ball
Having Coach Prime at the helm of the Buffaloes, you knew Colorado football was going to reel in some of the best covers in the country — but as CU’s coaching staff is learning, all of the blue-chip secondary talent won’t mean much if the opposing offense is running over your defensive front.
As Howell notes, Colorado only ceded 92 yards per game and 2.97 per carry against USC, ASU, and Stanford. That is a stark improvement on where they were, but opposing quarterbacks are still rarely threatened in the pocket; seldom having to improvise in the seconds following the ball snapping.
Conventional wisdom dictates that top players at all positions will want to be in the “Prime Time” spotlight the University of Colorado provides, but Coach Prime, Charles Kelly, and Co. can’t think that being anything but aggressive will reverse their fortunes.
If they aren’t, there could be a long rebuild ahead in Boulder. And Deion Sanders may not want to see it to its end.