The glaring issues from Colorado’s offensive line unfortunately overshadowed all else on Saturday evening in a 28-16 loss to UCLA.
Quarterback Shedeur Sanders rarely had any amount of time to do anything in the pocket as he was punished by the Bruins’ defensive line over and over again. Somehow, he still managed to throw for 217 yards and a late touchdown.
Defensively, Colorado produced four turnovers, including two Travis Hunter interceptions, in one of its better performances of the year.
Colorado fell to .500 (4-4, 1-4 Pac-12) with the loss while UCLA won its sixth game to secure bowl eligibility.
Here are my five takeaways from the Buffaloes’ loss to UCLA:
you watched the game, you don’t need me to tell you again that Colorado’s offensive line struggled. Shedeur Sanders was sacked seven times for a total of 40 yards while UCLA also picked up 10 TFLs for 50 yards.
Neither Isaiah Jatta nor Gerad Christian-Lichtenhan could do much at left tackle to stop UCLA’s pass rush while right tackle Savion Washington also looked stiff in his first game back from injury.
Lost in the poor performance of Colorado’s O-line was the strong play of the defensive front. Jordan Domineck led the way with two sacks and two TFLs and Deeve Harris also came up with a few big plays.
Colorado’s defensive secondary took a step back in the second half without Shilo Sanders, who was ejected for targeting late in the second quarter. Ethan Garbers’ passing lanes opened up and he was also given ample room to run. UCLA passed for 179 yards in the second half compared to 90 in the first.
Fortunately, Travis Hunter played his best game of the season at cornerback to keep things from getting too ugly.
Especially with Shedeur Sanders clearly hurt, I would’ve liked to see offensive coordinator Sean Lewis utilize the running game a bit more. Anthony Hankerson, Sy’veon Wilkerson, Alton McCaskill IV and Dylan Edwards combined for only 11 rushes and 45 yards.
struggled to watch Shedeur Sanders run for his life time and time again. Watching him limp over to the bench after taking a sack was equally as painful.
However, while he could’ve thrown in the towel and let backup Ryan Staub take the beating, Sanders stayed in there and never pointed a finger.