The Denver Post

Defense reboots after poor outing

- By Mike Brohard

ALBUQUERQU­E» Before a team can move forward, it must look back and correct mistakes.

This week, that process was one and the same for a Colorado State defense that didn’t follow its rules while allowing 42 points to Nevada, something the Rams must do to have any success against New Mexico’s option attack Friday night.

“I believe so. Playing a team like New Mexico, an option team, it’s A through D (gaps) and everybody has their own letter as their responsibi­lity,” Rams linebacker Evan Colorito said. “It’s nice to get back to that, because it guarantees success if you do it right. It also requires discipline, making sure people are doing their own job.”

An option attack is better if it has an experience­d quarterbac­k under center, and in Lamar Jordan, the Lobos have that. But they have had trouble keeping him healthy and he has struggled with consistenc­y. He shared playing time last week with Tekava Tuioti, who will throw the ball more than Jordan will, and neither quarterbac­k has really torn it up when keeping the ball.

Jordan has a 39-yard run as his long, but he’s averaging less that 4 yards per carry in an offense where six different Lobos have already gained more than 100 yards on the season.

Yet it hasn’t been an attack that has produced the normal results, averaging just 240.5 yards on the ground and held to less than 100 yards last week in a 38-0 loss to Fresno State.

Colorado State has improved in run defense, allowing just 123.7 on the ground after two successive weeks of holding the opponent to less than 100 yards.

A third week in a row might be asking a lot, but CSU coach Mike Bobo has been impressed with the defense’s gains.

“We’ve done a nice job of tackling. I think we’ve done a nice job of playing with our hat and hands, playing better with our hands up front and getting off blocks than we did last year,” Bobo said.

Colorito feels the CSU defense was awakened last week and was primed for a discipline reboot. He also feels the Rams have something to prove on defense.

“It just wasn’t us as a defense. We haven’t played like that all season. I was embarrasse­d by that, and I know a lot of guys on defense were embarrasse­d by that, as well as the coaches,” he said.

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