Colorado and Colorado State open their DI-A season Saturday at 4pm PST at Infinity Park in Glendale, Colo.
The game’s big because it’s an in-state rivalry game. It’s big because it’s being played at Infinity Park. It’s big because the league opener. And it’s big because the Buffs will be trying to duplicate their 39-13 fall victory over the Rams, and CSU will be trying to reverse the result.
“I think we’re happy to kick off the season with this game for all those reasons,” said Colorado coach Jim Snyder.
“It’s the season opener where the expectations for both teams, internally, are really high and everybody’s excited and everybody’s undefeated right now and that does raise the stakes and raise the intensity, and, for us, the fact that we were able to beat them in the fall, it does position us to look at this game as a game we can win and get our season off on the right foot.”
Colorado is coming off of a very successful 7s season, during which it won the Pacific 7s tournament (essentially the Pac-12) and reached the National Quarterfinals in College Station, Texas. Snyder says the Buffs’ first real 7s season was beneficial, but his team is under no illusion that its success means 15s success.
“We had about two or three of our 7s players who, through the process for qualifying for the 7s and training, really improved their skills – their running lines, their passing and catching, their ability to put guys away in space, and we’ve seen that translate into direct improvements in their 15s game, so for those specific players, it was a direct benefit to our 15s program,” he said.
“From an expectation standpoint for the team, we do draw the distinction that that really has nothing to do with how we’re going to play now.”
Here is a link to a promotional video for the rivalry game.