November 22, 2006

Breaking down the Colorado Buffalo defense

Who: Colorado Buffaloes
School Location: Boulder, Colorado
School Colors: Silver, Black and Gold

2006 Record: 2-9 overall, 2-5 in Big 12
National Ranking: Unranked
Conference: Big 12 (North Division)

Head Coach: Dan Hawkins (UC-Davis, 1984): In first season at Colorado (2-9 overall, 0-0 vs. Nebraska)
Defensive Coordinator: Ron Collins

When: Friday, Nov. 24, 2006, 2:30 p.m. (CDT)
Where: Memorial Stadium, Tom Osborne-Field
TV: ABC
Radio: Host Communications
Series Record: Nebraska leads 45-17-2
Base Defensive Formation: 4-3

On The Line: The strength of the Colorado defense is its ability to stop the run and it all starts with the big Buffaloes up front. Senior defensive end Abraham Wright (6-3, 240) leads the Big 12 Conference with a dozen quarterback sacks. Sophomore nose tackle Brandon Nicolas (6-3, 270) has 48 tackles on the season and sophomore tackle George Hypolite (6-2, 265) has made 46 stops. At the end opposite of Wright, senior Walter Boye-Doe (6-2, 245) has recorded 36 stops and 1.5 sacks.

Linebackers: CU always seems to be solid at the linebacker position and 2006 is no exception. Junior Jordon Dizon (6-0, 230) has a team-high 104 tackles to go along with 4.5 sacks. His total tackle number is the third best in the conference. Senior Thaddaeus Washington (5-11, 240) is a force again this season, recording 84 tackles. Sophomore Brian Jones (6-4, 220) has 61 stops to his credit.

In the Secondary: Junior cornerback Terrence Wheatley (5-10, 175) has five interceptions through 11 games to rank second in the conference. He also ranks third in the Big 12 with six pass break-ups. Sophomore strong safety Ryan Walters (5-11, 200) is among the team leaders in tackles with 58.

Punting the ball: Freshman DiLallo,Matthew is fifth in the conference in punting with a 43.6-yard average.

Buff Quick Hits

***Colorado's red zone defense is No. 1 in the Big 12 Conference, allowing opponents to score 28 times on 37 possessions inside the CU 20 yard line.

***The Buffs are ranked 60th nationally and sixth in the Big 12 for total defense, allowing 329.36 yards per game.

***CU ranks last in the Big 12 for its third down defense. Opponents have moved the sticks on third down 47.2 percent of the time this season against the Buffs.

***Colorado was the most penalized team in the Big 12 a year ago but ranks sixth in 2006 (44.1 YPG).

***The Buffs are shooting for their third straight victory in Lincoln. CU prevailed 28-13 in 2002 and 26-20 in 2004.

Colorado Schedule
Sept. 2 - Montana State (L, 10-19)
Sept. 9 - Colorado State (L,10-14)
Sept. 16 - Arizona State (L, 3-21)
Sept. 23 - Georgia (L, 13-14)
Sept. 30 - Missouri (L, 13-28))
Oct. 7 - Baylor (L, 31-34 - OT)
Oct. 14 - Texas Tech (W, 30-6)
Oct. 21 - Oklahoma (L, 3-24)
Oct. 28 - Kansas (L, 15-20)
Nov. 4 - Kansas State (L, 21-34)
Nov. 11 - Iowa State (W, 33-16)
Nov. 24 - @ Nebraska

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