Scout Watch: Colorado at Toledo

As the second week of the college football season is about to begin,'s Chris Steuber has the latest and confirms that five teams will scout the Colorado, Toledo game on Friday. has confirmed that representatives from the Baltimore Ravens, Houston Texans, Jacksonville Jaguars, San Francisco 49ers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be in Toledo, Ohio on Friday night to scout the Colorado Buffaloes and Toledo Rockets.

A top ten safety in the nation, Church is out to prove he's legit.
Toledo Athletics

There’s only one player in this game that’s highly regarded at his position and that’s Toledo safety Barry Church. At 6-foot-1, 219 pounds, Church has transformed his game from a playmaker to a steady defender who’s solid against the run. He’s an intelligent player that positions himself to consistently make plays and gives maximum effort down after down. He’s disciplined in his approach and keeps the action in front of him. He shows good awareness in the secondary, provides help over the top in coverage and has the physical mentality to clear the opposition out of the play cleanly. He’s an outstanding leader and a player that others look up to.

Scouts in attendance will be interested in seeing if quarterback Aaron Opelt can continue his development after he completed 61.2-percent of his passes for 423 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions against Purdue last week. At 6-foot-2, 225 pounds, Opelt has the athleticism and size scouts like, but his accuracy has always been suspect. Wide receiver Stephen Williams, who caught 15 passes for 185 yards and two touchdowns against Purdue, is an intriguing prospect that has great size (6-foot-5, 200 pounds) and good vertical speed. Running back DaJuane Collins will also draw some interest.

Colorado has only two senior prospects that are on the scouts radar, FB/TE Riar Geer and linebacker Jeff Smart. At 6-foot-3, 250 pounds, Geer is a versatile offensive weapon who possesses good blocking technique and has the ability to be an effective pass catcher. In last week’s loss against Colorado State, Geer caught six passes for 65 yards. At 6-foot, 225 pounds, Smart is an instinctive, undersized defender who gives an all out effort every time he’s on the field. Smart, the team’s leading tackler last season, had a tremendous start to the ’09 season last week as he recorded eight tackles, an interception and half of a sack.

An intriguing underclassmen for the Buffaloes is 6-foot-9, 305-pound offensive tackle Nate Solder. An athletic freak on the offensive line, Solder is quick off the snap, has excellent technique as a pass blocker and clears out the opposition with his long wingspan. He has to get stronger and improve his run blocking, but entering his junior season, Solder could very well be a first round pick in 2010, if he declares and shows steady improvement.

A member of the Pro Football Writers of America and the Football Writers Association of America, Chris Steuber has provided his analysis of the NFL and NFL Draft prospects on the web and on the radio since 1999. Steuber’s features are published across the network and on If you wish to contact Chris Steuber, email him at:

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