Buffaloes at a glance
Last week: Defeated Colorado State, 17-3
Steven Montez, So.: 21-for-29, 202 yards, 1 TD, 2 INT
Phillip Lindsay, Sr.: 19 att., 140 yards, 1 TD
Michael Adkins II, Sr.: 4 att., 10 yards
Beau Bisharat, So.: 1 att., 2 yards
Bryce Bobo, Sr.: 8 catches, 49 yards
Shay Fields, Sr.: 6 catches, 78 yards, 1 TD
Devin Ross, Sr.: 2 catches, 20 yards
LB Drew Lewis, Jr.: 12 tackles (3 solo)
S Afolabi Laguda, Sr.: 11 tackles (7 solo)
LB Rick Gamboa, Jr.: 11 tackles (3 solo)
Where they rank
How the Buffs rank nationally after Week 1:
Scoring: 102nd (17.0)
Rushing: 77th (143.0)
Passing: 82nd (202.0)
Total: 92nd (345.0)
3rd downs: 31st (50.0%)
Red zone: N/A (0 tries)
Scoring: 9th (3.0)
Rushing: 46th (88.0)
Passing: 101st (309.0)
Total: 76th (397.0)
3rd downs: 99th (50.0%)
Red zone: 56th (88.0%)
Penalties: 69th (7.0)
Turnover margin: 27th (plus-1.0)
3 questions facing CU
1. Will the Buffs be focused on the Bobcats?
Every year, there are big-time underdogs who pull off upset wins. Last week, Howard (over UNLV) and Liberty (over Baylor) were the latest. CU is not often this big of a favorite, but in recent history have proven capable of taking care of business in these situations. Two years ago, the Buffs were a 46-point favorite against Nicholls and won 48-0. Last year, they were a 41-point favorite against Idaho State and won 56-7. They'll need that same type of focus this time.
2. Can Steven Montez and the offense provide some fireworks?
All offseason, we heard about the explosive CU offense and how difficult it would be to stop. Then, last week, CSU stopped that offense, holding the Buffs to just 345 yards and shutting them out in the last 43 minutes. Perhaps most surprising was that CU didn't have many big plays in the passing game. This game could provide an opportunity for the Buffs to hit some big plays in the passing game and get rolling offensively.
3. What will the defense do for an encore?
Last week, the new-look CU defense was impressive in holding a high-powered CSU offense to just three points. Texas State isn't exactly an offensive juggernaut, but CU needs to maintain the same level of play it had against the Rams this week.
Bottom line: CU is expected to win this game easily and can't get caught sleepwalking through this one. After a lackluster performance against CSU last week, the Buffs need a sharper effort against Texas State. A close win or sloppy win will be concerning, but a dominating performance can boost the confidence in the Buffs.
Bobcats at a glance
Last week: Defeated Houston Baptist, 20-11
Damian Williams, Sr.: 18-of-28, 135 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
Anthony Smith, Fr.: 7 att., 71 yards, 1 TD
Damian Williams, Sr.: 13 att., 43 yards, 1 TD
Robert Brown Jr., Fr.: 11 att., 32 yards
Tyler Watts, Jr.: 6 catches, 23 yards
Elijah King, Sr.: 4 catches, 85 yards
Anthony Smith, Fr.: 3 catches, 4 yards
DE Ishmael Davis, Jr.: 9 tackles (6 solo)
S A.J. Krawczyk, Jr.: 7 tackles (6 solo)
ILB Bryan London II, So.: 7 tackles (4 solo)
Where they rank
How the Bobcats rank nationally after Week 1:
Scoring: 98th (20.0)
Rushing: 66th (155.0)
Passing: 111th (135.0)
Total: 101st (290.0)
3rd downs: 101st (28.6%)
Red zone: 87th (75.0%)
Scoring: 31st (11.0)
Rushing: 22nd (59.0)
Passing: 56th (199.0)
Total: 33rd (258.0)
3rd downs: 12th (14.3%)
Red zone: 41st (66.7%)
Penalties: 69th (7.0)
Turnover margin: 82nd (minus-1.0)
3 questions facing the Texas State
1. Can the Bobcats make it interesting?
Of course, Texas State hopes to win the game, but simply covering the spread would be a step up from the Bobcats' recent games against Power 5 teams. They've had losses of 42-3, 59-16, 33-7 and 58-10 in recent years. Even if they don't win this game, keeping it relatively close could be a boost for this team.
2. How can Damian Williams hurt the Buffs?
The dual-threat quarterback is a senior transfer from Mississippi State and flashed some of his talent last week against Houston Baptist. He's a great athlete who can make some big plays if he's got room to operate. That's going to be up to the offensive line to make that happen. If Williams has time to throw and room to run, he can be dangerous.
3. Will the defense be able to generate a pass rush?
A year ago, Texas State has just nine sacks all season. Last week, the Bobcats had six. And, CU allowed five against Colorado State. Texas State's defensive backs may not be able to stay with CU's receivers, but if the front seven can put pressure on Steven Montez, the Bobcats have a shot to slow down the passing game.
Bottom line: In their second season under Withers, the Bobcats are still very much in rebuild mode. A victory would be stunning, but Texas State doesn't need a win to walk out of Boulder feeling good. Put up a good fight and it'll set the Bobcats up for a solid remainder of the season.