The Good, the Bad, the Ugly, the Outlook

Colorado went into Austin and lost 42-17 to the No. 2-ranked Texas Longhorns. Inside, some thoughts on the game and the Buffs' outlook after falling to 4-2 on the season.

The Good: (OK, the very good). Vince Young and the Texas Longhorns. If Young stays healthy, he could keep the Heisman Trophy out of a Southern Cal player's hand in December. This team will give coach Mack Brown his first-ever conference title. They'll play in the Rose Bowl and give Brown a chance for a national title, as well.

The Bad: Colorado took a step backwards Saturday. On defense, the Buffs had no answer for Young, who torched them with 25-of-29 passing for 336 yards, then added three touchdowns rushing.

His counterpart, Joel Klatt, was like a hunting rifle that got knocked out of true. Klatt lost his accuracy after getting knocked down on a roughing the passer penalty early. Later, he seemed to find it again after getting tagged hard by a Texas defender.

CU couldn't get its run game going, finishing with a season-low 48 yards. And the Buffs, once again, fell into mental lapses and were called for several unnecessary penalties.

The loss should also provide more evidence for those who think the Buffs need to upgrade their recruiting efforts.

The Ugly: After two decisive wins over Big 12 South opponents, some Colorado fans had started to believe the Buffs could go down to Austin and play with the Longhorns. Hopefully, everyone's furniture is in tact after yet another beat down on ABC.

Since the 2000 season, Colorado has lost 10 times by 20 or more points when it's played on ABC.

The Outlook: Buck up, CU fans. This Buffalo team is laden with upperclassmen. They'll make certain the team quickly puts this loss behind it and prepare to get back on track Saturday at home vs. Kansas.

For a little bit of perspective, remember back to the beginning of the season. That's when we knew this four game gauntlet — Miami, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M and Texas — would show a lot about this team. Most said if Colorado team could go 2-2, they'd take it. Obviously, this Buffalo squad isn't a top 15 team. But, take it or leave it, Colorado still looks good enough to win its division.

Here are the facts: At 2-1 in conference play, the Buffs still have firm hold of the driving wheel in the race for the Big 12 North. The division runs through Boulder this year.

A word of caution, however, to those who will no doubt want to compare this year's possible scenario to the 2001 season, when CU lost in Austin, but beat Texas to win the conference title weeks later. That 2001 Longhorns team pales in comparison to this one. And this Colorado team has yet to prove it's in the same class as the 2001 team.

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