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Colorado hopes to get past stalled-out Jayhawks

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BOULDER, Colo. (AP) _ They don't know who their quarterback will be or where their next touchdown will come from. The Kansas Jayhawks are scuffling and that makes them a very scary team to face.

Or at least the way Colorado's Gary Barnett sees things, mainly because it's his Buffs (4-2, 2-1 Big 12) who have to face Kansas next.

``This becomes a huge game for them to the point that they're going to do anything they have to do to win a game,'' Barnett said. ``You have to cover every single scenario.''

Thus far, the scenarios for Kansas (3-3, 0-3) haven't involved winning, or scoring much. The Jayhawks haven't been in the end zone since an Oct. 1 game against Texas Tech, a 30-17 loss. Last week, they gained 97 yards in a 19-3 loss to Oklahoma.

``There are,'' tight end Derek Fine said, ``a number of things to improve on.''

Coach Mark Mangino hasn't committed to a quarterback for Saturday's game. The coach swapped Brian Luke and Adam Barmann nine times in games against Texas Tech and Kansas State.

``This situation is evaluated daily,'' Mangino said. ``We have put a lot of time and energy into it. We have given both guys opportunities to be `the guy.' We don't give up on anyone.''

Their defense, meanwhile, has been playing well _ ranked 15th in the country in points allowed and first in the Big 12 in rushing yards allowed. That, not surprisingly, has led to some sniping within the team.

``I'm ready to go out and get in a fist fight with them, but that would be pointing fingers and we can't be doing that,'' linebacker Nick Reid said of the offense after last week's loss. ``Let the offense figure it out for themselves.''

Mangino said he feels Reid's pain.

``I know Nick is frustrated, like a lot of us are,'' Mangino said. ``He wants to win and he is a leader. I hope those comments motivated some people. Don't for a moment think that he is divisive or selfish.''

By Kansas standards, Colorado's problems seem trivial.

The Buffs lost 42-17 to No. 2 Texas last week, a result that wasn't unexpected, even if the mistake-filled play caused Barnett some headaches.

``You don't give yourself a chance when those kind of things happen,'' Barnett said of the 11 penalties and host of missed assignments and blown opportunities CU committed. ``It was a completely different team than the team that was out there the week before. We have to decide which one of those teams we are.''

Against teams they're better than, CU has been a juggernaut. The Buffs have outscored opponents 145-48 in their four wins and outgained them by almost 700 yards.

Kansas would figure to fit into that category.

The KU game is the first of five straight for Colorado against teams in the Big 12 North. It means that, despite the Texas loss, CU controls its destiny and is easily among the favorites to win the not-so-stellar division.

Kansas, meanwhile, is simply looking for a win. Or a touchdown.

``I have abandoned most of my other head coaching duties this week in favor of working more with the offensive staff,'' Mangino said. ``Our offensive issues are obvious, and we just have to find a way to fix those things.''
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