In preparing for Friday’s season-opening game against TCU, Colorado is trying to learn about a team led by a new coaching staff.
TCU, meanwhile, is trying to learn about a CU team with not only several new assistants but a host of new players.
In the relatively new transfer portal era in college football, TCU head coach Sonny Dykes said it’s more of a challenge than in the past in gearing up for the first game of a season.
CU and TCU will meet at Folsom Field on Friday night (8 p.m., TV: ESPN).
“(Colorado) is a team that has a lot of new players and a lot of unknowns,” Dykes said during a press conference with TCU media this week. “They kind of restocked their roster through the transfer portal and recruiting.
“As we go into this first game, I think everybody is going to go through that in Week 1 in college football in some ways, just because of the turnover and the things that are different in college football now. In the past years, you would have a pretty good sense of what the team was going to look like and who was coming back and you could find them on film.”
In addition to graduation, CU lost six projected starters to the transfer portal last winter. Several players atop the Buffs’ depth chart this week are either new to the team or played sparingly in the past.
TCU also has several transfer additions, including former CU safety Mark Perry.
Dykes, in his first year at TCU, said there is one main aspect of the CU program that jumped out at him as he watched the Buffs’ 2021 games, however.
“The thing that stuck out to me looking at their tape last year is just they played hard,” Dykes said. “They played hard every single week. It didn’t matter what the score was, it didn’t matter what the circumstance was. As much as anything else, that tells you what you need to know about the program. (Head coach Karl) Dorrell and his staff have those guys in a really good place. I think it’s obvious with the effort they showed consistently last year.”
Dykes is no stranger to Folsom Field or the Buffs. During his career, he has coached against CU five times — including three times as a Texas Tech assistant and twice as the head coach at California (2013, 2014). Three of those games were in Boulder.
“I’ve been to Folsom Field several times as a coach and I’m always impressed with the atmosphere and the fans,” he said. “It’s a fun place to watch a college football game.”
In those five games against CU, Dykes is 2-3, including 0-3 in Boulder.
Roddick ready to roll
Colorado junior guard Casey Roddick was named as one of four captains earlier this week and is one of several veterans that Dorrell has been impressed with for putting the team first.
Roddick also reshaped his body and has much more position versatility than ever before. While he’s slotted to play left guard, Roddick could play center or tackle if needed.
“That’s so important in this game; you have to have versatility with guys that can play many spots,” Dorrell said. “Casey, with all the work he’s done, he’s made a great body transformation in terms of what he looks like and he’s had an excellent camp. Had the best camp of all of our linemen.”
Like CU, TCU has not announced a starting quarterback for Friday. Dykes has said that three different quarterbacks could see playing time against the Buffs. He added that three different centers could play, as well. … CU announced Wednesday that it has sold 90% of its student sports passes. A source told BuffZone that CU expects to sell out of student passes by Thursday.