BOULDER, Colo. (AP) – First-year quarterback Brendon Lewis and the Colorado Buffaloes beat northern Colorado 35-7 on Friday night, spoiling the former NFL wide receiver’s college head coach debut Ed McCaffrey.
McCaffrey, whose Bears (0-1) missed 2020 due to the pandemic, had a son – Max – with him on the sidelines serving as offensive coordinator and another – Dylan, a transfer from Michigan – on quarterback -back.
The Buffs have outsmarted the state’s first football family.
On his first start, Lewis completed 10 of 15 passes for 102 yards, including a 17-yard touchdown pass to slippery rookie Montana Lemorious-Craig, and ran eight times for 44 yards.
The Buffaloes (1-0) edged the Bears by 281 yards to 17 yards rushing.
The Buffaloes got touchdown passes from full backs Jarek Broussard, Alex Fontenot, Ashaad Clayton and Deion Smith with Broussard in the lead with 94 yards on 15 carries.
Lewis’s only other college experience came in relief from Sam Noyer (now at Oregon State) in the Alamo Bowl against Texas last season. He won the starting job this summer when his main competitor, transfer from Tennessee JT Shrout, blew his knee in a scrum last month.
Lewis’s signing was a 16-play, 90-yard beauty that gave the Buffs a 21-0 lead in the third quarter. The reward has arrived The TD of 3 yards from Fontenot.
Dylan McCaffrey (24 of 41 for 236 yards, one touchdown and one interception) responded with a 75-yard drive aided by two Colorado flags. He hit Kassidy Woods with a 34-yard touchdown that took the Big Sky Conference Bears to 21-7.
Clayton responded with a 1-yard score which he set up with a 35-yard scamper at the Bears 19, and Smith scored at 5 yards.
After a scoreless first quarter, Broussard twisted his way for a touchdown of one meter. This limited a 28-yard run that was kept alive when defensive end Joe Golden knocked Lewis out of bounds after a failure on the third and 20 games two after he sacked Lewis.
Practice began at Bears 28 after kicker Caleb Brickhouse was whistled for an off-bounds hit after Dimitri Stanley’s 19-yard return.
by Broussard burst of 30 meters set up rookie Lemonious-Craig’s 17-yard slippery touchdown that took him to 14-0.
The Bears were driving just before half-time, but McCaffrey knocked down Jonah Morris in the end zone and cornerback Mekhi Blackmon intercepted him.
Ralphie VI debuted Friday night. The newest living bison mascot is a 15 month old child who weighs around 500 pounds.
His predecessor retired after the 2019 season, his 12th. With no cheerleaders or mascots allowed in 2020 due to the pandemic, last season marked the first year since 1967 that CU has not taken the field behind a buffalo.
“Colorado football is synonymous with Ralphie,” said Buffs athletic director Rick George, “and I am delighted to continue this tradition with Ralphie VI as the best tradition in varsity track and field.”
Take it away
The Buffs won on the road, but got off to a slow start and allowed seven first downs by penalty, a high in the schedule. So, coach Karl Dorrell, who was Ed McCaffrey’s receivers coach with the Denver Broncos all those years ago, has a few teaching points as the schedule immediately gets tougher.
Northern Colorado visits Houston Baptist on September 11.
Colorado hosts Texas A&M on September 11 at Empower Field at Mile High in Denver.
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