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Buffs Battle It Out In Scrimmage

Apr 7, 2006

BOULDER - Defense is usually ahead of the offense this time of year, but in the latter half of the University of Colorado football team's second scrimmage of the spring, the Buffs were able to unleash some of their weapons, symptomatic of Head Coach Dan Hawkins' new offensive system.


After combining for just 18 yards on their first four possessions, the offensive units needed a play to finally get things going. On the first play of a new series?started at the opponent 25-yard line?junior quarterback Bernard Jackson handed the ball off to junior tailback Hugh Charles and took off toward the flat. Charles stopped in the backfield and threw in back to Jackson, who evaded defenders into the end zone for a touchdown.  


"You've got to have something to keep them guessing," Jackson said. "That was something (the coaches) just put in today and we caught them off guard. We started off rough in the beginning, but as practice went along we picked it up."


On the very next snap from scrimmage, Jackson took the snap, faked a handoff to Charles and then raced around the right side of the field for an uncontested 25-yard score.  


"We are getting better," Hawkins said. "Obviously the defense is always way ahead of the offense, but we are kind of starting to get a few highlights here and there offensively."


                Junior quarterback Brian White led all quarterbacks with 62 yards on 6-of-11 passing. Jackson completed 2-of-5 passes for 14 yards and an interception. He also chipped in 35 rushing yards and a score.


                Senior tailback Mell Holliday led the way rushing with 45 yards on eight carries, including a 25-yard touchdown in which he rumbled through the middle and broke several tackles en route to the end zone. Redshirt freshman tailback Kevin Moyd finished with 26 yards on just two caries and junior tailback Byron Ellis rushed seven times for 18 yards. Charles chipped in ten yards on six carries in addition to two reception for 27 yards and his touchdown pass.


                The quarterbacks were proficient in spreading the ball around, as eight different receivers finished with one reception.


                The defense gave up some plays late in the scrimmage, but had an overall solid outing. Senior linebacker Thaddaeus Washington led the defense with six total tackles (three solo) and three third down stops. 


                "We've been getting better every day," Washington said. "Guys are working hard and playing aggressively, and I like the way we're coming along."


                Junior linebacker Jordon Dizon also finished with six tackles and added two tackles for a loss and a sack. Senior defensive end Abraham Wright tallied three tackles and two sacks.


                The defense also forced two turnovers, the first on an interception by sophomore cornerback Gardner McKay, and the second on a fumble forced by senior defensive back Lorenzo Sims, Jr. and recovered by sophomore defensive end Maurice Lucas.


                Senior place-kicker Mason Crosby connected on 7-of-13 field goals during the scrimmage. Four of his misses came from 52 yards out and one was wide left from 69 yards. His average make on his seven field goals was 47.3 yards.


"It was a cleaner scrimmage than last week?fewer penalties and functional issues," Hawkins said. "That's all we can do in life is get better, and as long as they continue to do that, we'll be alright."


Scrimmage Notes: Hawkins said the Buffs probably won't taper off toward the end of next week in order to have a more polished spring game. He said it is more important to be able to install new philosophies in his offense and have his team practice them. Jackson said he is starting to grasp Hawkins' offense more and more every practice. "Every day there is something new (the coaches) throw in. Hopefully by the spring game everything will be set in stone and I can go out and have fun." The Buffs will practice next week on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 5:00-7:30 in preparation for the annual spring game. The game will be held at 1:00 p.m. at Folsom Field. The game is free and open to the public; it will also be broadcast by 850 KOA, with Mark Johnson (play-by-play) and Larry Zimmer (analyst) calling the action. Fox Sports Net will also broadcast the game on a delay to be aired at a later date.