It should come as no surprise that Buffs head coach Mike MacIntyre used the words "game time decision" when asked about Liufau and his status for the Ducks as he recovers from the ankle sprain he suffered against Michigan. Even if the Buffs' staff knows of his availability on Thursday or Friday, it makes no sense for them to make an announcement.
“Sefo was moving around better today than he did yesterday,” MacIntyre said on Tuesday, after having a similar message to the media on Monday. “Steven [Montez] is getting a few more first-team reps as Sefo keeps working on getting well. We'll see how that progresses.”
While Montez had a couple deer-in-headlights moments during his first meaningful action in The Big House, the redshirt freshman has a lot of raw talent.
“It is hard to get thrown in there in that situation at that time. Steven has a lot of moxie to him and has a lot of confidence, though. He'll bounce back from that,” MacIntyre said. “Now his feet are wet. It's not like he would be jumping out there for the very first time. I definitely think Steven is capable of making plays and moving our offense. He has a good arm and can run. He can do well when he gets a chance to get in there.”
“Jay-Mac” quietly producing
After three games, Jay MacIntyre ranks second in the Pac-12 in punt return average at 10.7 yards and his 107 total punt return yards ranks tied for first in the conference.
"I think I've done a pretty good job at returning punts,” he said. “It's something I did in high school, and it's something that's always come natural to me. My dad and uncle were punt returners, so we've always returned punts as a family. At first when you go back there, you're not really sure what to expect. Now it's all comfortable and it comes natural to me."
MacIntyre also ranks tied for fourth on the Buffs' squad with eight receptions early on this season. He has yet to score his first touchdown as a sophomore.
During Tuesday's press luncheon, Jay MacIntyre was asked if there is a family rule against talking football at the dinner table: "There's no football-talk-at-the-dinner-table rule. But we tend to keep football here, and be father-son away from football. I think we have a great balance with football and our father-son [relationship]. But there's always sometimes where we'll bring it up and talk football at the dinner table.
“My brother likes to give his opinions on how I did or how my dad did. He's usually the one who brings it up and we have to answer all the questions because he's got plenty of them. My mom will also jump into the conversation as well – she's a football wife. My sister will jump in too. She's one of those people you don't want to sit by at a game, she'll go crazy. If we're losing, sometimes she'll have to get away and go puke. It's definitely a football family, and we really enjoy each other when we're around each other. It's been good."
Mike MacIntyre later joked that his daughter is similar to the young girl in the movie Remember the Titans.
“She'll probably be embarrassed for me saying that, but she knows it's true,” he said.
Additional Tuesday notes -
*** Oregon has opted to go for two-points on 11 different occasions after a touchdown so far this season, while the Ducks have only attempted an extra point seven times.
“We prepare every week for what we call muddle huddles but they have multiple muddle huddles so we have to spent extra time on that,” MacIntyre explained. “That's one of the reasons that Oregon does that, so you'll spend more time working on that and it takes away from working on things with their offense.”
*** Even though CU senior defensive lineman Samson Kafovalu's older brother walked on at Oregon, he is not a fan of the Ducks. He made that loud and clear during the press luncheon.
“Growing up I have always known Pac-12 schools, USC being my favorite. I have grown out of it,” Kafovalu began. “My older brother used to get some letters from Oregon, showed me all their new uniforms. I am like, 'Man, get those out my face. I don't want to see it.' So I have grown this hate for Oregon. It is very important for me to come out this game and do what I have to do.”
*** The Buffaloes' punt team issues in Ann Arbor last Saturday have been well documented. It was nothing short of a dumpster fire. MacIntyre said on Monday they will shore up their issues in that phase of the game, and on Tuesday, he was asked about their philosophy in having a punt shield formation instead of a traditional punt formation.
“The philosophy is you can get your guys out front quicker and get them down there faster. You have the shield back there to protect,” he said. “That's what we've done and most of the teams we play do it too. We didn't execute it well enough. We had to fix that up and I believe we have."