CU's run defense vs. USC running back Ronald Jones II

The Buffs have struggled against the run most of the season, and they got shredded last week by an ASU rushing attack that ranked among the worst in the country. Jones is one of the country's top running backs, and if he gets going, he'll have a big day and CU will have a rough day.

CU corner Isaiah Oliver vs. USC receiver Deontay Burnett

Oliver has not played the last two and a half games because of a leg injury, and he's a game-time decision this week. If he's not available, the key matchup is Dante Wigley or Trey Udoffia vs. Burnett. Regardless of who covers Burnett, the Buffs have to limit his effectiveness and try to keep him out of the end zone.

CU quarterback Steven Montez vs. USC's defense

Montez has played his best football the past two weeks, and not just statistically. He's been poised, run the offense with efficiency and moved the chains the past two games. He's got to keep that same poise against a very athletic USC defense.

CU running back Phillip Lindsay vs. USC's run defense

The CU star is having his best season, and still has a shot at the school's all-time rushing record. When he's racking up yards and getting in the end zone, the Buffs usually play well. USC has given up a lot of yards on the ground this season.

Brian Howell at howellb@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/BrianHowell33



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