Know Your Opponent: UCLA Football vs. Colorado Buffaloes 2017

BOULDER, CO - SEPTEMBER 23: Quarterback Steven Montez
BOULDER, CO - SEPTEMBER 23: Quarterback Steven Montez /
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BOULDER, CO – SEPTEMBER 23: Phillip Lindsay
BOULDER, CO – SEPTEMBER 23: Phillip Lindsay /

Colorado Defense

The 2017 NFL Draft wasn’t kind to Colorado. They had to replace almost their entire secondary and their front seven was hit hard by defections as well whether to graduation or the draft. They also lost their defensive coordinator and so it seems like the “blank statement” that the defense would be a in a rebuild mode seemed like an applicable one.

Instead this defense has looked strong especially in the secondary which is incredible given what they lost to the NFL over the offseason. The Buffs would like to play man in the back end and have the pieces to do it. Free safety Afolabi Laguda is a rangy safety that allows the Buffs to show single high safety looks and can go sideline to sideline to back it up.

The linebackers thrive in the 3-4 that makes up the bulk of this Colorado defense. Rick Gamboa is the rock in the middle of this defense and makes running the football a hazard to ball carriers. He’s not the most athletic guy in the world but is smart and will find ways to find the ball. Think of him like former University of Arizona LB Scooby Wright. Drew Lewis on the other hand is a much more athletic linebacker that gives this group a run and chase presence.

On the defensive line the Buffaloes have size but they don’t necessarily have tons of depth. While they can make like very difficult for opposing offenses, they can be worn down with tempo and sustained drives. They took a body blow with the dismissal of Frank Umu and while they held up through non-conference play that lack of depth showed itself against the Huskies. Can the UCLA Football offensive line find a way to push around this otherwise impressive Colorado DL?

Final Word

This Colorado team already seems to be out of the conversation for the PAC-12 South championship. They just don’t have the same magic and even though it’s just one loss, this team might have too many issues to overcome. They have tons of young talent and the coaching in Mike MacIntyre to put together strong games but there are just too many hurdles for me to feel comfortable penciling them in as a challenger.

Next: UCLA Football: Josh Rosen is still one of the best quarterbacks in the country

The UCLA Football team gets a few nods from me. They have QB Josh Rosen and right now he’s hands down the pick over Montez. They also have home field advantage which hasn’t always been paramount in their history but the last time the Bruins won they were home. UCLA needs this game and I expect them to come out and play with a sense of urgency.


UCLA Football 45-Colorado 41