Ok, so it’s not the most creative name in the world but we’ll work on it. Or we’ll just go with it, either way. Each week, I’m going to look at 3 notable story lines surrounding the teams I cover on The Hull Show (Weekdays, 11a-2p on KFKA).
First topic has to be those 2-0 Colorado Buffaloes. I was one of those guys hanging out somewhere in the middle when it came to assessing how Coach Prime would do in year one. I wasn’t predicting playoffs or anything but certainly didn’t think a mere 3 wins would be the ceiling. That being said, I, like most of us, didn’t see a 2-0 start headed into the Rocky Mt. Showdown. Now? Well I’m not a reporter so I can officially say I do “believe now!”
The weapons on offense should be enough to turn some heads but the Buffs proved they can win with their defense after beating Nebraska 36-14 last weekend. Sure, the Cornhuskers aren’t exactly what you would call a good offensive team but for a unit that shouldered much of the criticism after giving up 42 to TCU, CU’s D stepped up, giving their offense a chance to warm up. And warm up they did. Sheduer Sanders is officially on Heisman watch (https://www.oddschecker.com/us/insight/football/ncaaf/20230910-heisman-watch-rankings-heading-into-week-3) and is already being talked about as a potential top 5 pick in the 2024 NFL Draft. The dude is special and with weapons like Dylan Edwards, Xavier Weaver, Jimmy Horn Jr. and outstanding two-way player, Travis Hunter, Colorado might just be a legitimate contender by the end of the season. Yes, CFP contender!
They need to get through a potential trap game against Colorado State then the real test in Oregon awaits but for now, it’s safe to say the Buffs are officially “here!”
Next up; The Denver Broncos. It felt different until it didn’t. Under Sean Payton’s new vision and leadership it seemed that the Broncos finally found some rhythm on offense. Russell Wilson was moving the ball down the field in the first half against the Las Vegas Raiders, tossing two touchdown passes, helping Denver take a 13-10 lead into the half. Russ started to look more like the guy that went to two Superbowl’s and won one in Seattle.
However, things slowed down for the Blue and Orange and they came up short against, in my opinion, a bad Raiders team. This game felt a lot like the preseason: I was left wanting more. As former NFL QB, Hugh Millen, told the Hull Show on Monday, there was a lot of meat left on the bone. (https://media.blubrry.com/1310kfka/1310kfka.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/09/091123hullshow-HughM.mp3) Denver only had six possessions on Sunday…..six! They scored on 50% of their drives but at the end of the day 16 points is about where we were last year. In fact, that was their total in game one last season against Seattle, losing 17-16 in Russ’s debut as a Bronco.
I’m concerned about the play makers on offense and defense (zero sacks and basically zero pressure on Jimmy Garoppolo). Now, TE Greg Dulcich is out for several weeks and we are still waiting to see if Jerry Jeudy will return to the lineup soon. Panic time? Not quite. But this weekends game against Washington sure feels like a “must-win.”
QB change for the Rams: It took just about two quarters of football for Head Coach Jay Norvell to make a move at quarterback. Colorado State will start freshman Brayden Fowler-Nicolosi over last years starter, Clay Millen, against the #18th ranked Buffs. I get it. Last year was rough for Millen but that was the case for everyone as CSU had serious problems at offensive line and a “Fort Air Raid” offense that showed no signs of taking hold. That being said, Millen was the guy in camp and we didn’t really hear that it was close as far as competition goes. Coach Norvell even admitted that he was running more of a timid offense in hopes that the defense could keep things close against Washington State until the offense could get more comfortable. Doesn’t sound very “Fort Air Raidy” to me……but I digress. I would have liked to see Clay in the offense we saw BFN run in that second half against the Cougars.
A lot of the push back I hear on my whole “two quarters” thing is that they had a lot more than just that first half to assess Clay. Did they? All off-season we heard that the struggles on offense was due to a shaky O-line, yet, game 1 with the new and improved unit, we go conservative? Millen was never able to find much of a rhythm and just when the Rams started to go downfield more he got hurt and never made it back in. Yes, the pick 6 was terrible. Clay will be the first to admit that as well as take the blame for his play, but even Stevie Wonder could see that Clay and Nicolosi were running two completely different offenses against WSU.
I’m not a fan of the move this early and I certainly didn’t love the game plan headed into game 1 but I do believe in Norvell. Sometimes I don’t agree with even the best head coaches so I’ll chalk this up to one of those moments. I AM rooting for BFN, I just hate the spot for Clay. Moving on…….. and you better move on, because the Rocky Mt. Showdown just became an extremely tall task.