The Colorado Buffaloes had a bye in Week 8 of the 2023 college football season before gearing up to face No. 23 UCLA in Week 9, and ahead of this matchup, Buffaloes head coach Deion Sanders had a straightforward, poignant message for the team should they not return from the bye week on time.
"We'll practice Sunday. So, they'll have to be back Saturday night," Sanders said. "They know if they're a minute late their locker will be cleaned."
Sanders, also known as Coach Prime, is likely still angry and frustrated over the Buffaloes' incredibly devastating Week 7 collapse
To recap, the Buffaloes were 4-2 heading into Week 7 and just two wins shy from being bowl-eligible. They were hosting the weak Stanford Cardinal and were massive favorites. This would've been their fifth win, leaving them one shy. Remember, this is a program that won just one game last season.
The Buffaloes appeared to be headed for that win. They were up 29-0 at halftime, and some rumblings quarterback Shedeur Sanders, the son of Deion, even posted links to his merch on his Instagram story.
It's unclear if it was him or someone else, but the victory looked locked up.
Well, not so fast. The Cardinal roared back and outscored the Buffaloes 36-7 in the second half, forcing overtime.
Sanders threw five touchdowns but also a costly interception that led to the Cardinal scoring and winning in overtime, 46-43. Cardinal quarterback Ashton Daniels threw for 396 yards and touchdowns while adding 39 rushing yards. He connected with wide receiver Elic Ayomanor 13 times for 294 yards and three scores.
Now, the Buffaloes are 4-3 after a 3-0 start. They topped TCU, Nebraska, and Colorado State to start the season but lost back-to-back games against Oregon and USC before beating Arizona State (barely) on the road, 27-24.
Going up against No. 23 UCLA, the Buffaloes offensive line will look to fend off Bruins edge rusher Laiatu Latu, a commonly referenced top overall prospect for the 2024 NFL Draft.
That game occurs this Saturday at 7:30 pm ET at the Rose Bowl, and the Buffaloes are three-possession underdogs.