As bad as Arizona State looked in its last game, its Week 4 opponent, Colorado, has appeared even worse. Things have quickly changed since the country watched the Buffaloes nearly take down top-10 ranked Texas A&M.
A Lifeless Offense in Boulder
When Colorado took the lead over No. 7 Texas A&M back on Sept. 11, Buffalo fans probably didn’t think that’d be the last score they saw for two weeks. Colorado never scored again against the Aggies and are now coming off a shutout loss to Minnesota last week.
Coach Karl Dorrell came into the season without a defined starting quarterback. Last year’s starter, Sam Noyer transferred to Oregon State. J.T. Shrout came in from Tennessee, but he suffered a knee injury before the season started. Now freshman Brendon Lewis — and you thought Arizona’s passing offense had issues — is averaging under four yards per attempt when he drops back to throw.
Running back Jarek Broussard is still a really good player. However, now Lewis or Drew Carter will head to Tempe, the first time the team will play outside of Colorado, trying to inject life into the offense in the Pac-12 opener. There really shouldn’t be any excuses for the Sun Devil defense, and if things go wrong, well, it might be a worse reaction than last week from the Sun Devil faithful.
Colorado’s Success Against Arizona State
These two teams didn’t play last year because of the Sun Devils’ COVID-19 issues. Regardless, Colorado has won two in a row and three of the last four matchups versus Arizona State.
The previous two games were close, and well, luckily the Sun Devils don’t have to worry about the two players that caused them the most problems in 2018 and 2019. Laviska Shenault — had four total touchdowns in 2018 — and Tony Brown — had three receiving touchdowns and 150 yards in place of an injured Shenault — are gone. However, it’d be a Always Something University moment if Arizona product wide receiver Brendan Rice had a career day for some reason on Saturday.
Nevertheless, Arizona State should be fired up for Saturday following the BYU loss, and if it needed more motivation, beating a team that has had its number of late should help as well.