Deion Sanders’ second game as Colorado head coach looked a lot different than the first, but the end result was the same — a win.
While there weren’t the offensive fireworks of the triumphant 45-42 season-opening road win over TCU, No. 22 Colorado did what it had to do to post an emphatic 36-14 win over Nebraska on Saturday in Sanders’ first regular season game at Folsom Field in Boulder.
The Buffs struggled on offense in the early going but took advantage of three first-half Nebraska turnovers to take a 13-0 halftime lead. In the second half, however, Colorado strung a few drives together to put the hapless Huskers away.
Shedeur Sanders threw for 393 yards and two touchdowns in the win with Xavier Weaver emerging as his top target. Weaver caught 10 passes for 170 yards and a touchdown. His 12-yard touchdown catch in the third quarter capped off Colorado’s best drive of the game, a 10-play, 75-yard possession that increased Colorado’s lead to 20-7 immediately after Nebraska scored its first touchdown of the day. It added another meaningless touchdown in the closing seconds of the game.
Tar’Varish Dawson scored two touchdowns for the Buffs as he hauled in a 30-yard touchdown catch in the second quarter and then scored from eight yards out on a fourth-quarter end-around. Travis Hunter, Colorado’s two-way star, also pitched in three catches for 73 yards in the win.
Colorado punted on its first four drives but then proceeded to put points on the board on seven of its final eight possessions. And Nebraska miscues helped the Buffs build an early lead.
Nebraska quarterback Jeff Sims struggled mightily in his second game with the Huskers. He threw three costly interceptions in the Week 1 loss at Minnesota. In this one, he fumbled three times — all on botched exchanges, either with the center or a running back — and also tossed an ugly interception.
Sims’ first fumble led to a Colorado field goal, and then his interception set up the Sanders-to-Dawson touchdown pass a play later. In all, Colorado would score 16 points off of Nebraska’s four turnovers.
On the other side, Colorado’s defense limited the Nebraska offense to 341 yards, many of which came in garbage time. The Buffs also posted six tackles for loss after not having one in the Week 1 win over TCU.
Now 2-0, Colorado will host Colorado State next Saturday before opening Pac-12 play with a road trip to Oregon. Nebraska, meanwhile, dropped to 0-2 to start its first season under Matt Rhule. The Huskers will host Northern Illinois next week.