As usual, Saturday’s scrimmage was a good news/bad news practice. The good news is the new-look offense looked pretty good. Running exclusively out of the shotgun, the Buffs first, second and third teams had 635 yards (313 rushing/322 passing) Saturday.
Sophomore tailback Demetrius Sumler got the scoring started early. He ran the first two plays up the middle, moving the chains on each carry. Then quarterback Cody Hawkins found Sumler in the flat on a screen pass. Sumler bobbed and weaved and muscled his way 56 yards for a touchdown.
“It felt good,” Sumler said. “The offense was clicking a little bit out there.
“(The offense is) not too much different. It’s basically the same plays; we’re just running them out of the shotgun now. It’s basically our same reads.
Tight end Patrick Devenny shook off a dropped pass a few moments later and hauled in an over-the-shoulder ball from Hawkins, then bulled his way through Anthony Perkins’ would-be tackle for a score.
Walk on Arthur Jaffee, playing mostly against the third-team defense, led the offense with 98 yards on 10 carries. Hawkins completed 10 of 18 passes for 168 yards and three touchdowns.
Brad Jones, the outside linebacker going into his fifth year, said the offense is better now than it was a year ago.
“This offense is further along by leaps and bounds,” he said. “We’re going to have a pretty good offense.”
Jones played a lot of snaps Saturday because no less than six of CU’s linebackers missed the scrimmage for a variety of reasons. And the fact that Marcus Burton, Mike Sipili, Nate Vaiomounga, Pat Duren, Josh Hartigan and B.J. Beatty were on the sidelines or elsewhere surely had something to do with CU’s offensive output, particularly on the ground.
Defensive coordinator Ron Collins said it’s disappointing to be missing so many players who were expected to play a significant role in the fall.
“It’s just too bad,” he said. “We wanted those guys out there competing for jobs.”
Collins also admitted the crew of cornerbacks, mostly a young group, still “has a long ways to go.”
Collins added, he likes that his defense has to face the new look CU offense in practice each day. It’s a faster pace offense, and one that is similar to several teams the Buffs will play in 2008.
• First team offense on the first series: QB Cody Hawkins, TB Demetrius Sumler, FB Jake Behrens, TE Pat Devenny, WR Patrick Williams, WR Scotty McKnight, OT Ryan Miller, OT Nate Solder, OG Erick Faatagi, OG Devin Head, C Daniel Sanders.
• First team defense on the first series: DE Maurice Lucas, DE Marquez Herrod, DT George Hypolite, DT Brandon Nicolas, LB Bryan Stengel, LB Brad Jones, LB Jeff Smart, CB Gardner McKay, CB Chapelle Brown, S Anthony Perkins, S Daniel Dykes.
• Solder hit a personal milestone Friday when he weighed in at 280 pounds, the first time he’s weighed that much in his life.
• Sophomore tailback Cory Nabors has been put on scholarship. He had 58 yards rushing on 10 carries, coming mostly against the second- and third-team defenses.
• Both placekickers Jameson Davis and Aric Goodman were inconsistent Saturday. Both missed a PAT and at least one field goal, and both hit extra points and field goals. Both kickers were booting the ball into the end zone during kickoffs.
• Sophomore linebacker B.J. Beatty missed the scrimmage because he's back home in Hawaii attending a funeral.
• Scrimmage Stats courtesy CUBuffs.com