Count Down To Rocky Mountain Showdown

We all know that CSU has won three of the last four, but this season the Buffs are more focused than ever. Many questions remain, a new QB named Joel Klatt, new offensive line and new kickers, but Colorado and some veteran captains are ready to take it to the Rams.

Colorado opens its 114th season of intercollegiate football in the Frontier Airlines Rocky Mountain Showdown in Denver against in-state rival Colorado State in a 5:47 p.m. MDT kickoff at Invesco Field at Mile High. The contest is expected to sellout (76,125).

CSU, which starts its 105th football season, is the home team for the contest. The game is also the last of six straight in Denver as the 2004 and 2005 games return to campus, both in Boulder.

ESPN will televise the game nationally, with Ron Franklin(play-by-play), Mike Gottfried (analysis) and Adrian Karsten(sidelines) to call the action. This marks the ninth straight game in the series that will be televised either nationally or regionally, as ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 and Fox Sports Net have broadcast games between the two in-state rivals, which are located just 45 miles apart.

Colorado is looking for leadership in this game as in the past few years the Buffs have stumbled out of the gate. The Rams have won three out of the last four years. The CU captains hoping to lead the Buffaloes are: OG Marwan Hage, FS Medford Moorer, TB Bobby Purify and LB Sean Tufts ·Hage, 6-3, 290, senior from Montréal, Quebec, Canada - Hage, who has earned his business management degree in just three years at CU, has started 27 consecutive games at split guard for the Buffs. In the spring of 2003, he was one of five recipients of the MacAllister Scholar Award, presented to five CU sophomores or juniors who exhibit outstanding leadership skills for the university and the community.

·Moorer, 6-2, 200, senior from Los Angeles, Calif. - Moorer is a fifth-year senior who has already earned his undergraduate degree in sociology. He is on the pre-season "watch list" Jim Thorpe Award, which is presented to the nation's top collegiate defensive back. He has 145 career tackles with five interceptions, including four in 2002.

·Purify, 6-0, 200, senior from Colorado Springs, Colo. - He enters his senior season ranked 20th all-time in rushing yards (1,832) at Colorado and is 34th in all-purpose yards (2,168) and tied for 53rd in receptions(32). He is sociology major at CU.

·Tufts, 6-4, 245, senior from Englewood, Colo. - A candidate for the Butkus Award as the nation's top collegiate linebacker, Tufts will be a starting inside linebacker for the Buffs. He has 101 career tackles. He missed six games last season due to a high ankle sprain. He is sociology major at CU.

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