Colorado vs. Colorado State fearless prediction and game preview.
Date: Friday, August 30
Game Time: 10:00 pm ET
Venue: Sports Authority Field, Denver, CO
Colorado (0-0) vs. Colorado State (0-0) Game Preview
There was a time when this was annually one of the most entertaining and close battles, but it’s been all Colorado over the last four seasons. Now that it’s the start of the Mel Tucker era in Boulder, the winning streak can’t stop now.
The Buffs not only need the rivalry win, they can’t whiff on any chance to battle up to six wins and bowl eligibility after going 5-7 in each of the last two years. After this, Nebraska comes to town, and the Pac-12 season starts up at Arizona State a few weeks later.
Colorado State needs to bounce back from a horrible 3-9 season, but it gets Western Illinois at home next week before going to Arkansas. Winning this showdown again for the first time since the 31-17 opener in 2014 would be a massive deal for head man Mike Bobo.
Why Colorado Will Win
Colorado State doesn’t have the lines, and it has a particular problem on the offensive front.
The Ram line did a decent job in pass protection, but it couldn’t do a thing for the running game. It’s not going to be a massive weakness, but against Tucker’s defense, it’ll have to adjust fast and deal with a dangerous pass rush.
The bigger problem, though, will be a Ram defense that got destroyed last season and doesn’t return enough veterans to expect a huge early change.
It got lost in the collapse of last year, but Colorado has a fantastic group of skill players that can hang with just about anyone as long as WR Laviska Shenault is healthy. He went off for 211 yards in last year’s 45-13 win.
Why Colorado State Will Win
The Rams have to get the pass rush going right away. Give QB Steven Montez time to work with his high end receiving corps, and this will be over fast.
The Buffs didn’t do enough to keep Montez from being hit, and ended the year allowing a ridiculous 104 tackles for loss. Tucker is looking for a more physical style from his offense, but Colorado State needs to be able to turn it loose and hope the combination of Emmanuel Jones on the outside and Ellison Hubbard in the interior can be effective enough to provide steady pressure.
What’s Going To Happen
There are a whole lot of issues on both sides of the ball.
Colorado State needs to take back the rivalry, but Colorado is coming off of seven straight losses after starting last season 5-0. The Buff offense will look like it did early on, but it’ll be the defense that starts to look the part under the new coaching staff.
The Rams will be plucky and should hit enough home runs with the passing game to keep this from getting ugly, but Colorado will end up with its fifth series victory in a row.
Fearless Prediction & Line
Colorado 38, Colorado State 24
Line: Colorado -12.5, o/u: 58.5
ATS Confidence out of 5: 2
Must See Rating: 3
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