Adam Schulz was very efficient, limiting mistakes and getting the ball to his playmakers in Anderson and Murphy. 19 of 33 for 233 with a TD and pick. The touchdown throw to Murphy was great and he had a beautiful back shoulder pass early in the game. Would have had another TD if not for a Murphy fumble at the goal line. All in all, a good day for Schulz.
Running Back: B+
Maybe the best running back performance of the year came from York on Saturday as he bruised his way to 132 yards on 32 carries with 2 touchdowns. The team average wasn't great, but York wore down the Buffs. More efficient than the numbers would indicate.
Wide Receiver and Tight End: B
Oh, Jake Murphy. What could have been? It was a two man show on Saturday with 15 of Schulz's 19 completions going to either Murphy or Dres Anderson. Both were able to get good separation and made a couple of great catches. Helped that Schulz was pretty accurate as well.
Offensive Line: C+
Colorado's line isn't very good, so it was no surprise that Utah's line didn't have many issues. The push in the run game was average, with York getting a lot of those yards himself. The pass protection was ok, although Schulz was forced to get rid of a few balls quicker than he wanted to. Nothing good. Nothing bad. Pretty average performance with all things considered.
Defensive Line: B
Sefo Liufau was under attack all day. Colorado's left tackle was abused over and over by a rotating group of Utes. Trevor Reilly went out with an all-timer of a game and 14 tackles. He mostly played linebacker, chipping in a tackle for loss and game ending interception. Tenny Palepoi owned the interior of Colorado's line with 8 tackles, 1 for loss, a sack, and a forced fumble. Hunter Dimick was in the backfield all day and LT Tuipulotu recovered two fumbles.This position group is so good that I grade them harder than everyone else.
PLaying from behind, Colorado threw for most of the game, and the Utah backers did a solid job in coverage. Did let the tight end slip through the middle for a TD catch, but that was on the safeties as much as the linebackers. Jason Whittingham was a monster again, totaling 10 tackles. He has to be an all conference performer.
Keith McGill had his worst game since maybe September, getting beat for a TD and toasted on a few other plays that could have been big gains if not for missed throws. May have been looking ahead to the NFL. Orphey and Thomas were ok, but nothing that stood out.
How many times did we see a Colorado receiver get open deep down the field with no help from the safeties? Luckily for Utah, Liufau couldn't connect on the deep ball. Walker completely misplayed the touchdown to the tight end over the middle.
Special Teams: C-
Hackett was good in the punting game again and will get some all conference love. Phillips hit a 46 yard field goal, but nothing in the return game again and the Utes gave up an on-side kick to open the second half.
Position Grades: Utah vs Colorado
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