Colorado vs. Arizona St. matchups
CU RUN OFFENSE VS. ASU RUN DEFENSE — The Buffs were average on the ground in their season opener, gaining 129 yards on 28 carries. They were missing starter Hugh Charles (hamstring) and will be again this week. Redshirt freshman Demetrius Sumler proved capable. The Buffs are still green in the middle of the offensive line. ASU allowed only 40 net yards and 1.5 yards per carry to San Jose State to start the season. The Buffs will present a bigger challenge. Edge: EVEN.
CU PASS OFFENSE VS. ASU PASS DEFENSE — The Buffs proved last week they are no longer one dimensional on offense with smart, capable play of quarterback Cody Hawkins. He threw for two touchdowns and 201 yards against CSU and wideouts Scotty McKnight and Patrick Williams showed they can be threats. The Buffs will enjoy being able to surprise people in this area for at least half the season because they never could show much of the passing game last season. ASU can produce a stong pass rush and will likely find creative ways to blitz CU's young line and quarterback. The Sun Devils intercepted two balls last week. Edge: CU.
ASU RUN OFFENSE VS. CU RUN DEFENSE — The Sun Devils feature a veteran offensive line with all five starters back this season. The rolled to 250 net yards in Week 1 with three different tailbacks doing most of the damage. Ryan Torain is a possible future pro and will likely get the bulk of the work this week with backup Keegan Herring questionable (neck). ASU ran for 180 yards against the Buffs last season. CU allowed just 2.8 yards per carry against a formidable opponent last week, but this is a step up. Edge: ASU.
ASU PASS OFFENSE VS. CU PASS DEFENSE — Once again, the big, smart, experienced offensive line is a key factor. Quarterback Rudy Carpenter will probably eclipse the 5,000-yard mark in career passing with his first completion. He has thrown 42 touchdown passes in less than two full seasons as the starter. The receiving corps is talented. The Buffs continued to allow an absurd completion percentage and a lot of third-down conversions last week. Those issues must be corrected. Edge: ASU.
SPECIAL TEAMS — The Buffs were two plays away from a great performance in the kicking game a week ago, and they still managed to win the game with special teams. The punt and kickoff return teams were good with Chase McBride and Terrence Wheatley providing some fireworks. ASU wasn't bad in special teams in its win over San Jose State, but it's difficult to tell how strong the Sun Devils are in this area because of the lack of competition they have faced. We will give CU the edge because they made big plays in this area last week. Edge: CU.
PREDICTION — Arizona State 31-21.
— Kyle Ringo