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CU Buffs’ QB Sefo Liufau named Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Week

CU quarterback Sefo Liufau looks for runnign room during the second half of the Rocky Mountain Showdown last Friday in Denver.
Cliff Grassmick / Staff Photographer
CU quarterback Sefo Liufau looks for runnign room during the second half of the Rocky Mountain Showdown last Friday in Denver.

A lot of players for the Colorado football team contributed to Friday’s 44-7 rout of Colorado State.

On Monday, the Pac-12 Conference honored one of those players, as quarterback Sefo Liufau earned offensive player of the week honors.

“It’s a great feeling,” Liufau said. “If anything, that’s just a testament to how well the offense played and how my guys around me played, as well.”

It’s the first time Liufau has received a conference player of the week award and just the seventh weekly honor for the Buffs in their six Pac-12 seasons. Liufau is the first CU offensive player to earn the award since Paul Richardson in 2013.

For Liufau, the honor is a perfect cap to his first game back from injury. After spending the offseason rehabilitating a left foot injury, he completed 23-of-33 passes for 318 yards and a touchdown against the Rams. He also ran 14 times for 66 yards.

In the process, he became CU’s all-time leading passer (7,715 career yards) and now owns or shares 78 records at CU.

It wasn’t a perfect performance for Liufau, who did fumble twice. Overall, though, he was pleased with his return to the field.

“For it to be the first game back, I know I missed a couple throws and I had a couple fumbles, which is pretty frustrating, but for the most part, I was really satisfied with how I was running the ball, passing, making checks and everything,” he said. “There’s room to improve, but I was definitely satisfied with Week 1.”

Head coach Mike MacIntyre was pleased with Liufau’s performance, as well.

“He played really well,” MacIntyre said. “He had a couple of throws, if he would have made those he might have had a couple more touchdowns, but that happens. He made a lot of plays, too, a lot of great plays. He got us into a lot of the right situations, made some good checks.”

Oregon linebacker Troy Dye was the Pac-12 defensive player of the week, while Utah punter Mitch Wishnowsky was the special teams player of the week.

Upon further review

While the team had two days off from practice over the weekend, MacIntyre had a lot of time to review the film from Friday’s win, and was mainly pleased with what he saw.

“We played really hard and we made quite a few mistakes that we could have done some other things better,” he said, “but I thought the kids played extremely hard and they came out fast and furious and stayed after it. I was pleased with that. It was exciting to watch them play for the first time live.”

In past years, mistakes might have cost the Buffs a game, but MacIntyre said, “We didn’t make a bunch of critical mistakes.”

Eyeing the Bengals

On Saturday, the Buffs will host Idaho State in their home opener at Folsom Field. The Bengals are an FCS squad that plays in the Big Sky Conference, and MacIntyre spent part of his Sunday night watching them on film.

“It’s a lot like Hawaii’s offense last year,” he said. “They throw the ball really well.

“Defensively, they’re a true 4-3 football team. A little bit more like Oregon State used to be about two years ago with the wide ends and rush ends. They’re going to try to get after our passer and they’ll cause some havoc to our tackles.”

Idaho State went 2-9 last year, and opened its season with a 47-3 win against Division II Simon Fraser on Saturday.


Senior center Alex Kelley, who left Friday’s game early in the third quarter with an ankle injury, was back at practice Monday and is expected to play Saturday. … Safety Tedric Thompson left Friday’s with whiplash, MacIntyre said. Thompson did not practice Monday, but has passed all the concussion protocol and is expected to return to the field today. … CU’s last three conference player of the week honors came after beating CSU – Liufau, linebacker Kenneth Olugbode (2015) and Richardson (2013).

Brian Howell:, on Twitter: @BrianHowell33.