Buffs Aim To Address Issues During Bye Week
BOULDER — With a bye week at hand that couldn't have come at a better time, Karl Dorrell's Colorado Buffaloes (1-4, 0-2 Pac-12) will spend the week trying to address the issues that have led to a four-game losing streak.
Dorrell said Monday that includes a directive to his assistant coaches to meet with every player in their respective position groups.
"I gave the coaches a mandate this week about talking to each and every one of their players about what are one or two attributes that we have to fix this week so we can carry on that improvement going into next week," Dorrell said. "That's really the emphasis this week, to try to shore up the issues that we're not performing well and address those things in an off week where you have really good practices. There's some things on defense we're trying to fix. There's things offensively we're trying to fix. That's really the mandate, to try to get each player, whatever their issues are, to get those things addressed."
The Buffs will practice three times this week, have the weekend off, then return to work next Monday in preparation for their Oct. 16 home matchup with Arizona. That game will kick off at 1:30 p.m. and will be televised by the Pac-12 Networks.
Dorrell said one thing he has stressed with his team is that the Buffs have seven games remaining — still plenty of time to carve out some success.
"There's still a lot of games left, still a lot to play for," Dorrell said. "We play this game to win, we play this game to compete. Obviously we've been on the shorter side of winning but there's things in front of us that we can control, at least that we can try to address and to play better and to get ourselves in position to win."
Dorrell said he and his staff will also use this week to assess possible changes. That could include personnel as well as coaching duties and responsibilities.
"We're evaluating everything right now," he said. "We had a long staff meeting yesterday and had a chance to talk through a lot of things we're trying to address, whether it's from our staff or from a personnel perspective. But nothing is in concrete right now. We're still going through an evaluation period. We have some time this week to work on some things we need to work on. If we need to make changes, we'll do it."
One area that will get some close assessment this week is the quarterback position. While freshman Brendon Lewis had his best game so far last week against the Trojans, Dorrell said freshman Drew Carter will get an equal amount of work this week with the No. 1 offense.
"Drew is doing some good things," he said. "We have to at this point look at giving even reps with both those guys and get a chance to assess what they're both doing in terms of how they're operating."
Lewis has started every game this year, completing 48 of his 90 pass attempts for 475 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. Carter has appeared in two games, with four completions in eight attempts for 27 yards in mop-up duty against Minnesota.
"If Drew has a great week and he feels like he's ready for an opportunity to play, which is definitely where he's trending to, that's something we need to discuss next week," Dorrell said. "We are at that point where we probably should, if that scenario happens again, give someone else a chance to come in and make some plays and see if that gives us some life offensively."
But the big picture this week will be focusing on cleaning up the issues that have plagued the Buffs on both sides of the ball. A matchup against the 0-4 Wildcats (UA hosts UCLA this weekend) could be exactly what the Buffs need.
"We have time to fix some things and come off this bye playing hopefully our best football starting next week against Arizona," Dorrell said. "There's still time and we have the people to do that. There's an attention and urgency about getting those things addressed. Their attitude has been tremendous. Their attitude right now is get back to work and let's fix the things we need to fix so we can play winning football."