After a tough 42-34 loss on Saturday night to Arizona State, the Buffs look to one of their most difficult matchups of the year as the University of Oregon Ducks come to town. Oregon is the eighth-ranked team in the country, with a 7-1 record, their only loss coming from the number one-ranked University of Georgia.
Though it was the highest-scoring game of the year for the Buffs, with 34, the defense could not match that level of play. ASU scored quickly, and CU was playing from behind the whole game. By the fourth quarter, the Buffs were down by 22 points, and their late scoring surge wasn’t enough for the win on a cold Saturday in Boulder.
Nevertheless, CU saw great individual performances from a few players. True freshman wide receiver Jordyn Tyson had his breakout game for Colorado, finishing with 246 all-purpose yards, 131 coming from punt returns, and two touchdowns. In his weekly press conference, head coach Mike Sanford alluded to Tyson’s record-breaking performance.
“Just seeing a lot of his labors come to fruition on game day was something that I think needs to be celebrated here by our athletic department, our football program and within the confines of our media,” Sanford said.
Tyson was the first true freshman to win two Pac-12 players of the week honors. After his Saturday night performance at Folsom, he also won freshman of the week and special teams player of the week.
Shifting his focus to the game, Sanford talked about how he sees this matchup against a top-ranked team like Oregon.
“Tremendous football team. A lot of team speed. Probably some of the best line play that you see, particularly on their defensive line and the veterans on the offensive line and the linebacker core,” he said. “It’s obviously a big challenge for us. We went to work today and we understand that we have to play extremely hard and with extreme discipline. It’s going to be a tall task, but it’s a task we are fully up for.”
CU is currently a 31-point underdog against the Ducks, which is a significant margin for a road team, even such a talented team as the Ducks. As a coach in similar situations before, he gave a quote he’s shared with the team.
“‘If you want to conduct an orchestra, you must turn your back to the crowd,'” Sanford said. “That’s what you have to do if you want to lead through tough times, through adversity when nobody is giving you a chance. At some point, you have to turn your back to the crowd and focus on those that lead.”
As the number eight ranked team in the country averaging 41 points per game, the Oregon Ducks have the potential to make it to the College Football Playoff. They have a quarterback, senior Bo Nix, in contention for the Heisman, and have demolished Pac-12 teams that CU has struggled against, like Arizona and UCLA. As a quarterback’s coach, Sanford mentioned the Ducks passing strength and how they make the most out of their athletes.
“When I’m evaluating quarterbacks I’m always looking for somebody that can do more than just what the play is designed for and that’s who Bo has been,” he said. “They’re finding early completions in games and then allowing his natural athleticism to play the second play to take over.”
The game this weekend will be against the most formidable opponent CU has seen all season, by far. However, the road does not get any easier, with two of their last three games being against top 15 teams, USC and Utah, to finish the season. But as the Buffs go into their most brutal stretch of 2022, they do not plan on going down without a fight.
The Colorado Buffaloes will match up against the number eight-ranked Oregon Ducks on Saturday, Nov. 5, at Folsom Field. The game will kick off at 1:30 p.m. MST and be nationally televised on ESPN.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Eli Gregorski at Eli.Gregorski@colorado.edu.