Dorrell To Closely Assess Buffs QB Situation In Bye Week
BOULDER — Colorado coach Karl Dorrell said he and his staff will perform a careful assessment of the Buffaloes' quarterback situation during the upcoming off week.
But, Dorrell stressed, CU's offensive issues are not all on the shoulders of freshman quarterback Brendon Lewis.
Lewis has started every game thus far for the 1-4 Buffs. He had his best game of the season in Saturday's 37-14 loss to USC, completing 10 of 17 attempts for 162 yards, one touchdown and one interception.
CU's only other real option at quarterback is another freshman, Drew Carter, who has played only sparingly. Carter did not play Saturday, and has completed four of eight attempts in two games for 27 yards.
Dorrell, though, hinted that CU coaches will carefully evaluate the situation next week.
"Maybe this is a one-two machine now," Dorrell said. "Give both these guys a chance to develop and go. That's something we will definitely discuss this week, now that we don't have a game at the end of next week. We have some more time to really think through this."
Another area that will be assessed closely is CU's offensive line. Against a team that had recorded three sacks in four games, the Buffs gave up five Saturday.
"They're not playing at a level that they should, given the experience," Dorrell said. "We're having some issues in a lot of areas but particularly up front. This is going to be a week for us to get back and really try to shore up as much as we can before we play Arizona in two weeks. There's a lot of work for us to do and we're definitely going to do that."
Those problems up front only steepen the learning curve of a young quarterback.
"The thing that helps a quarterback is if he feels he has protection," Dorrell said. "That's part of having a young guy that's not only learning, but you don't want him to be thinking about whether he's going to be protected or not. We have a lot of stuff to work on right now. Like I said before, it's not just Brendon."
BIG PLAYS — The Buffs went into Saturday's game with their longest play of the year being a 35-yard run by Ashaad Clayton in the season opener.
Tight end Brady Russell went well past that Saturday, snatching a short pass from Lewis and racing down the sidelines for a 65-yard gain. The catch was the longest of his career, and he finished with three receptions for 87 yards (also a career high). Two of his three catches helped set up CU's touchdowns.
But the Trojans also had their share of long plays, with seven for 20 yards or longer. The longest play given up by CU this year was a 39-yard pass, but USC had a 53-yard run and 46-yard pass completion.
BUFFS BITS: Cornerback Nigel Bethel and LB Jack Lamb made their first career starts for the Buffs. Bethel was credited with three tackles and a pass breakup while Lamb had two tackles … Mark Perry lead the Buffs with 10 tackles, including seven solo stops … Nate Landman had nine tackles with seven solos … DL Mustafa Johnson had one tackle in his first game back for the Buffs … The Buffs did not have a quarterback sack for the second straight game … Jarek Broussard led the Buffs with 68 yards on 16 carries … RB Deion Smith scored his second touchdown of the season, and he's now tied for the team lead in rushing TDs … Josh Watts has now punted 31 times for a 48.8-yard average … CU was just 1-for-10 on third-down conversion attempts, with the average yards to go 10 … CU is now 24-31-1 all-time when wearing all-black uniforms.