Colorado Buffaloes coach Jon Embree knows it will take a team effort on defense to shut down, if not contain, the Oregon Ducks fast-break offense in this week's matchup. Defensively, Embree is emphasizing the importance of tackling and holding assignments against the quickness of the Ducks.
The Buffs have worked on tackling in practice since the 42-14 loss to the UCLA Bruins on Sept. 29. The results on the field during Saturdays haven't been what Embree hoped for with blowout losses to Arizona State and USC, but the necessity to practice tackling is still evident.
Aside from tackling, Embree is relying on his safeties in particular to be disciplined in a zone defense against Oregon's quick-tempo offense. Holding assignments will be tough with the Ducks, who can frequently pick up big plays thanks to the running ability of quarterback Marcus Mariota. The secondary will need to do its best to keep its vision on the ball, or else they'll "probably feel the breeze as [the Ducks] run by you at that point."
Overall, Colorado has struggled on defense this season, allowing 42.6 points per game to opponents.