After a strange week involving the head coaching carousel rumor mill, it will be nice for Colorado to get back to football. The Buffs should be chomping at the bit to get back after it, especially after pushing the Arizona Wildcats to the brink last week before losing as time expired.
Both the Buffs and Washington State have been in a slump lately. Colorado has dropped its last four games since starting 4-2 while the Cougars have dropped six straight after their 4-0 start. Which streak will be broken this week in Pullman?
Read on for my keys to Colorado getting win No. 5:
Keep up the O-line improvement
Only a couple of weeks removed from giving up seven sacks against UCLA, Colorado’s offensive line allowed three last week against the Wildcats. If Colorado can keep this trend up, its offense should be able to move the ball against the Cougars.
Win the turnover battle
The Buffaloes have a significant advantage when it comes to the turnover battle. Going into the game, CU is +11 while the Cougars stand -6 in turnover margin. The Buffs have to keep this trend going at Gesa Field.
Don't let the Cougars run game get on track
The Buffs’ run game struggles have been well documented, but the Cougars have also not been able to get traction in the rushing attack. WSU has only averaged 83.2 yards per game and three yards a carry. To the Buffs defenders: don’t let the running game get going.
Balance your offensive attack
The offense got back on schedule last week, putting up 31 points with an increased number of rushes. While it’s clear that Colorado wants to air the ball out at this point, the running game has been effective at points this season. CU should be looking to give about 20 rushing attempts to its backs against a defense allowing 161.8 on the ground each game.
Vegas knows something
Something is going on in Las Vegas. Over the past few days, the betting line has shifted in Colorado’s favor. That means a lot of people are throwing money at the Buffs. People like this matchup for CU, which has a chance to steal an away game from a reeling WSU Cougars team.