BOULDER, CO - Oct. 15, 2021: ...
University of Colorado, Boulder’s Trevor Woods takes back a blocked punt for a touchdown against Arizona during the NCAA football game on October 16, 2021. (Cliff Grassmick/Staff Photographer)

As a true freshman, Trevor Woods doesn’t get a lot of playing time, but he knows his role and plays it well.

On Saturday, he found a way to significantly impact the game for the Colorado Buffaloes, blocking a punt and returning it for a touchdown in the 34-0 win against Arizona at Folsom Field.

“I missed out on one a couple weeks ago, so coach, he kept me in there and he said, ‘You’re gonna get one,’ and I had belief,” said Woods, a safety. “He kept letting me rush every time. There’s not a lot of ways I can impact the game at the moment but that’s one of the few ways I can do it right now.”

CU (2-4, 1-2 Pac-12) had slugged its way to a 6-0 lead with a pair of field goals when Arizona was forced to punt – again – midway through the third quarter. That’s when Woods busted through, reached out with his right hand and blocked the punt of the Wildcats’ Kyle Ostendorp.

Then, Woods scooped up the ball and went 36 yards for the score and a 13-0 Buffs’ lead.

“I actually stumbled for a little bit and I saw a shadow behind me,” he said. “I got worried but I think it was one of the guys from our team, so after that I kind of knew I was in the clear.”

It was CU’s first blocked punt for a touchdown since Dominique Brooks had one against Kansas on Oct. 22, 2005.

“The special teams’ touchdown, which was huge on a blocked punt, young rookie – a freshman – makes a big play,” CU head coach Karl Dorrell said. “Great to see that. That kind of gave us opportunities to create some opportunities on the defensive side.”

That play broke the game open for CU, which scored three more touchdowns to pull away.

Wells dominant

Outside linebacker Carson Wells has been one of CU’s best defenders for a couple of years, but Saturday was his most dominant game of the season.

Wells finished with a sack and four tackles for loss. He also had an interception return for a touchdown just 74 seconds after Woods’ touchdown.

“We called a pressure from the other side, so I’m just a flat defender,” he said. “I just hit (Arizona receiver Boobie Curry) and (Jalen Johnson) ran a stick right through me. So I just broke on the ball. I got a good block by Nate (Landman), a couple good blocks and I wasn’t getting tackled by the quarterback again.”

Century mark for Rice

Receiver Brenden Rice finished with a career-high 111 yards on three receptions, including a 62-yard touchdown. He’s the first CU receiver to hit the 100-yard mark since Dimitri Stanley in Week 2 of the 2020 season at Stanford.

In all, it was a big day for the receivers, who had been quiet in the first five weeks. In addition to Rice, Montana Lemonious-Craig caught three passes for 52 yards and Stanley caught his first touchdown of the season.

“We had some receivers that made some terrific plays but (quarterback Brendon Lewis) made some terrific throws,” Dorrell said.


CU punter Josh Watts had a career-long 64-yard punt in the second quarter. It was another big game for Watts, who averaged 48.0 yards on four punts. It’s the fifth consecutive game with an average over 47.0 – the longest streak at CU in 17 years. … This was the first time CU has scored touchdowns on offense, defense and special teams in the same game since Nov. 6, 2004, at Kansas. … Arizona had won four in a row in Boulder before Saturday. CU now leads the all-time series 16-8. … CU scored on its first possession for the first time this season. … Nate Landman finished with seven tackles, inching ever closer to the 400 mark. He has 398 for his career.