5 Questions: Buffs-Bobcats

Inside, five questions about the Buffaloes as they face Montana State Saturday at Folsom Field.

1) Can James Cox gain confidence as a starter?
Cox needs to erase the memory of last year's bowl game. Finding success against the likes of Montana State could be just what the doctor ordered.

2) Which back will lead the Buffs in rushing?
It appears the Buffs will be a running-back-by-committee team — at least for now. Hugh Charles, Byron Ellis and Mell Holliday each offer different styles. Who'll have the hot hand?

3) Will the receivers stretch the field?
And, if so, which ones will be doing the stretching? Patrick Williams and Alvin Barnett emerged in camp, along with surprises Cody Crawford and Scott McKnight. Dusty Sprague is finally healthy (ankle), and should play a lot, as will Stephone Robinson. (Notice who's missing?) But can any of them beat defenders downfield and haul in the long ball?

4) How many freshmen will play?
We've been told Michael Sipili, Chapelle Brown, Justin Drescher and Scott McKnight should see the field early this season. Any others?

5) Will the Buffs really keep "swinging their swords for 60 minutes"?

In 2004, there was a preseason buzz about Idaho State as they prepared to play Boise State in both teams' opener. Idaho State, who plays in the same conference as Montana State, was projected to go to the Division I-AA playoffs that year. Could they go into Boise and surprise the bigger in-state school?

Hawkins' club didn't make much of the preseason buzz building around the game. The Broncos quietly went about their business. Then they let loose for 60 minutes on Idaho State, beating them 62-0.

At the recruiting luncheon in Denver in February, Hawkins got the crowd fired up by saying his Buffaloes will not take a knee when they get a comfortable lead, but instead will keep swinging their swords for 60 minutes. Translation: This one could get ugly.

For those wondering, CU's largest margin of victory is 62 points (1940 vs. Wyoming), unless you want to count the 109-0 win over Regis in1905.


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