Young Buffs Heading to Montlake

Jon Embree is trying out every lineup he can think of during his first year as Colorado coach. The Buffs were hit hard by injuries early in the season and then five players were suspended for a violation of team rules before last Saturday's 48-7 loss at Stanford.

Wide receiver Paul Richardson, who led the team with 29 catches in the first five games, suffered a sprained knee in practice and is expected to miss another game or two. Wide receiver Kyle Cefalo also missed the Stanford game with an elbow injury.

So wide receiver Keenan Canty made his first career start and senior transfer Logan Gray saw his most extended action of the season. Wide receiver Alex Turbow played his first career game for the Buffs.

Brian Lockridge was moved from running back to cornerback last week to fill in for a handful of injured defensive backs, but instead he found himself on the injured list with an ankle sprain that forced him to miss the Stanford game. Four defensive backs were among the five players suspended last week and two others are out due to injury.

Linebacker Woodson Greer III became the 13th true freshman to play for the Buffaloes this season. Only seven teams have played more true freshmen.

Fifty-five of the 62 healthy players on the travel roster played at Stanford.

Quarterback Nick Hirschman and defensive tackles Kirk Poston and Eric Richter each played their first game for Colorado. Offensive linemen Paulay Asiata, Kaiwi Crabb, linebacker K.T. Tu'umalo, and tailback Josh Ford all participated in plays from scrimmage for the first time in their career after previously only playing on special teams.

"We have what we have," Embree said. "We just have to find a way, figure a way. I told the seniors a lot of them have got seven opportunities left to play football again and they have to make sure they keep bringing a sense of urgency to practice. We have to find a way to fight and take what we've got to win games. It is what it is, and at some point guys are going to have to step up and make a play when they're in there. You can't change, and injuries are part of the game. So you have to find a way to win."

Quarterback Tyler Hansen said the team agreed with Embree's decision to suspend five players despite the team's lack of depth.

"We love those guys, but they did the stuff they did and didn't deserve to be here," Hansen said. "Coach Embree did the right thing and we support him. We've got guys who want to be here and are doing the right things to be here. Coach Embree makes it known if you don't do the right things in academics or out of football, then you're not going to be around."

--Colorado has lost 20 straight road games and 21 straight out-of-state games.
--Stanford converted a third-and-26 against the Buffaloes. Colorado opponents had been 0-for-11 on plays of third-and-20 or more prior to that play.
--The Buffs had a season-low six penalties for 47 yards, also a season low.
--Colorado did not have a quarterback sack against the Cardinal, which has allowed only two all season. The Buffs ended a streak of 11 straight games with a sack and they had a sack in 36 of their previous 37 games.

KEEP AN EYE ON: TB Tony Jones -- The redshirt freshman scored his first collegiate touchdown on a five-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter. He also became a bigger part of the running game with six carries after getting only 11 rushes in the first five games of the season. However, he struggled running the ball with only five carries on those six rushes. He had two catches for eight yards after having only three catches in the first five games.

LOOKING GOOD: Senior tailback Rodney Stewart continues to make big plays as a receiver. His 76-yard touchdown catch was a career-long and the seventh-longest touchdown catch by a running back in school history. It was the longest play of his career and the second-longest play of the year for Colorado. With 203 all-purpose yards, Stewart has 4,228 all-purpose yards in his career, which is second in school history and just 123 shy of the record set by Eric Bieniemy.

STILL NEEDS WORK: Colorado's pass defense, which has been hit with numerous injuries and suspensions, gave up nearly 400 passing yards for the second week in a row. Andrew Luck threw for 370 yards and three scores one week after Marshall Lobbestael of Washington State threw for 376. The Buffs had one of the nation's top pass defenses in nonconference play, but are allowing an average of 373 passing yards in Pac-12 games.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "We've got to move on. It's the same as the last couple of weeks have been. It's water under the bridge. We're as good as any team we've played so far, I know that. We've been unlucky. We've got to keep moving on and keep fighting. We have to keep guys positive, keep fighting and keep thinking about this year, this year, this year."-- Colorado quarterback Tyler Hansen.
--Quarterback Tyler Hansen is tied for seventh in school history with 27 touchdown passes, along with Steve Vogel and Darian Hagan.
--Safety Anthony Perkins had nine tackles against Stanford to give him 205 in his career. He is the 60th player in school history to exceed the 200-tackle milestone.
--Terrell Smith started at cornerback and had his second career interception.

--Five Colorado defensive players -- linebacker Liloa Nobriga and defensive backs Parker Orms, Ayodeji Olatoye, Paul Vigo and Josh Moten -- have been indefinitely suspended from the team, the school announced last Thursday afternoon. Moten is a redshirt freshman while the other four are sophomores. Orms is the only starter among the suspended players, but he missed the last game with a leg injury. Vigo has missed the last two games with a pulled hamstring. Moten and Olatoye have seen limited action this season while Nobriga has yet to play in a game. Moten has since been reinstated this week.

"We are disappointed that these student-athletes have not lived up to the high expectations we have here at the University of Colorado," coach Jon Embree said. "While not going into specifics, there are no issues with law enforcement, but they have not met their obligations and responsibilities to be active members of the team." Top Stories