CU comes in with the weight of a 21 game road losing streak on their shoulders and to break it against UW they will have to slow down the most efficient passer in the Pac-12. Like in previous games, the Buffs’ battered secondary will be tested by a top tier QB in the Huskies Keith Price who comes in tied for first in country with 17 TD passes.
Coming into the season, the majority of the defenses facing the Huskies just had to focus on stopping the run game of Chris Polk but now the attention has started to shift to Price. He comes into the game today as one of the most efficient passers in the conference completing nearly 70% of his throws this season. After facing arguably the best quarterback in the country last week, Stanford’s Andrew Luck, CU’s secondary will once again have to try and slow down a high-powered passing attack.
Five Colorado secondary players are out due to either injuries or suspensions including offensive transplant Brian Lockridge who is battling chronic ankle problems. Fellow offensive turned defensive player Jason Espinoza will see an increased workload today due to the lack of depth in the patchwork defensive backfield. If the secondary can somehow cause problems for Price and the Huskies then CU might have a chance.
On the offensive side of the ball Colorado should be able to have some success both through the air and on the ground. Even without star wideout Paul Richardson in the lineup, QB Tyler Hansen should have a big day as the Huskies give up an average of 30 points per game. Hansen and the offense are notorious for their slow starts but if they can avoid that today and get a lead they can finally end their long draught of losing on the road.
What this game will come down to is whether or not CU can get off to a fast start offensively and defensively. It looked like they were on their way to do that last week in Stanford but a blocked FG that was run back for a TD squashed the little momentum CU had built. With all of the injuries that the Buffs are dealing with it is hard to think that they have a chance. I’d like to be more optimistic but the Huskies’ only loss on the year was at #11 Nebraska 51-38 and the Huskies have had two weeks to prepare for CU after having a bye last week.
Prediction: Washington- 38 Colorado- 21