Yes, I normally do five things. But today, I really want to focus in on three things I'm hoping to see on this team's continuing long road to respectability.
- No more than a 55/45 pass/run ratio. The Cougars dropped back to throw the ball 50 times last Saturday, against just 20 rushes. And the ratio wasn't all that different than that before the game started to get out of hand in the fourth quarter. I just don't think this team can be successful with Marshall Lobbestael throwing the ball 70 percent of the time, as I question whether Lobbestael can truly get the ball down the field well enough to take advantage of Colorado's weak secondary -- he underthrew a number of balls against SDSU. This team is never going to have a 50/50 ratio with the weapons it has at receiver, but being able to approach that while still being able to move the ball would be a huge step in the right direction.
- Sound pass coverage from the linebackers. I've been meaning to write a post praising the linebackers for some time, even though they took a small step back against the Aztecs. They've been pretty good, got beat a number of times by Ronnie Hillman as they took bad angles and were sometimes left grasping at air. Rodney Stewart isn't nearly as good as Hillman as a runner, but he's a better pass catcher -- he leads the Buffs in receptions. The linebackers were incredibly suspect in man coverage last year; they'll need to not get burned today. I can forgive them for getting torched by Hillman; if they do a solid, sound job on Stewart, I think I might finally believe that these guys have really turned it around.
- Composure. After the meltdown at SDSU, this one should be self explanatory. Time to take a big step forward in this department.
Those are mine. What are yours?