Following last week’s loss to then-No. 5 Texas A&M, the 1-1 Colorado Buffaloes were shut out by the Minnesota Golden Gophers 30-0 at Folsom Field on Saturday.
It was a game full of struggles as Saturday marked the seventh scoreless first quarter for Colorado in its last 204 home games at Folsom Field. Head coach Karl Dorrell analyzed how Minnesota was able to overpower Colorado.
“They controlled the line of scrimmage really well,” Dorrell said. “They ran the ball well and their quarterback made some plays in the passing game. They did some things that got them an opportunity to score points and we didn’t.”
Colorado’s offense initially struggled in the first half of the game as it tallied just seven total yards, zero points and five punts entering halftime. The offensive line struggled equally as they allowed freshman quarterback Brendon Lewis to be sacked four times in the first half. All four first half sacks came on either third or fourth down, which helps explain why Colorado was unable to record a single first down in the first quarter.
“Offensively we’re struggling,” Dorrell said. “In a number of areas, it’s not just the quarterback. It’s protection, it’s run game, it’s receivers, it’s backs, it’s everything. It’s one of those things where we have to wipe the slate clean and start all over.”
Sophomore running back Jarek Broussard, dressed in full uniform, sat on the sideline during Colorado’s first three offensive possessions, giving junior Alex Fontenot a few carries early in the game as the starter. During Fontenot’s first handful of touches, he rushed for four yards to reach 1,000 career rushing yard at Colorado. Broussard eventually made his appearance in the second quarter with his first 8-yard rush going for more than all of Colorado’s first quarter rushing yards. Dorrell explained how Broussard’s limited snap count was in part due to keeping him healthy.
“Jarek is a little nicked from the previous game,” Dorrell said. “He had limited practice time and has not been at full speed, so we did not want to over-utilize him.”
Colorado’s defense looked strong at times as Colorado nearly tripled Minnesota in total tackles and had almost double the number of solo tackles. Atop the total tackles list for CU was senior linebacker Nate Landman (12), junior linebacker Guy Thomas (10) and junior linebacker Quinn Perry (10). Junior linebacker Carson Wells, who had Colorado’s lone sack of the game, discussed how the team needs to prepare for the first Pac-12 game of the season against Arizona State next week.
“You just have to look at yourself in the mirror as a man and see that you were outplayed, come back tomorrow with that mindset and get ready to work again,” Wells said. “We have to tackle better. They were breaking too many arm tackles and we have to get more of our heads to the ball.”
The Buffaloes will look to get back in the win column against Arizona State at Sun Devil Stadium on Sept. 25 at 8:30 p.m. MST.
Contact CU Independent staff writer Brett Polley at firstname.lastname@example.org.