Can The Buffs Flip The Script On The 2021 Season And Finally Beat USC?

Written By Ian St. Clair on 09/29/2021
USC Colorado football odds

The University of Colorado has a storied history when it comes to college football.

Some of the most impactful moments in the sport have come from the Buffaloes.

The Hail Mary against Michigan.


The Rashaan Salaam Heisman Trophy.

Sal Aunese.

The National Championship.

Anytime Ralphie leads CU onto Folsom Field.

Yet history isn’t complete without the defeats and failures.

Come this Saturday in Boulder, the Buffs (1-3 overall, 0-1 PAC-12 South) will look to correct at least one aspect of that not so good story. They’ll attempt to beat the University of Southern California (2-2, 1-2) for the first time. Ever. As it stands, Colorado is 0-14 all-time against the Trojans.

This is the first game between the two teams since USC’s 35-31 win in Boulder in 2019 and is this week’s PlayColorado College Football Game of the Week.

As CU receiver Dimitri Stanley, who has been a part of two losses to the Trojans, told the BuffZone this week:

“It definitely leaves a big chip on our shoulder. I feel like everybody wants to change that and everybody is coming to work in order to change that. We had a really good day of practice (on Tuesday). I think everybody’s locked in, tired of losing, honestly, from these past three games. So this next game is a stepping stool to progress our season forward.”

USC vs Colorado odds


Not only do the Buffs ride that losing streak against USC into Saturday’s game, they also ride a current three-game losing streak into Folsom Field.

To say CU has stumbled out of the gate is a bit of an understatement. The Buffaloes’ lone win on the season is against the University of Northern Colorado.

That helps explain why Colorado is the college football betting underdog to the Trojans. The Buffs are currently to USC.

The other popular betting market, and probably the most popular for this game given you have no idea which CU team will show up, is the over/under. The current line sits at .

It’s not like the Trojans have been world beaters either. USC head coach Clay Helton was fired on Sept. 13. Remember, this is a program that has National Championship expectations.

So if there was any season for this 0-for to finally end, you’d think it would be this one.

While Colorado does allow fans to bet on the in-state teams, unlike Illinois and Virginia, the state does not allow college football prop bets.

Buffs need to find consistency

Prior to the season, the Colorado sportsbooks didn’t have high hopes for the Buffs. The season wins total was 4.5. Based on the first four games, you can see why.

If CU wants to end both losing streaks on Saturday, it needs to find consistency on offense and defense.

The defense needs to produce quick defensive stops and, even better, create turnovers. That’s something it hasn’t done in back-to-back games.

On offense, the Buffaloes need to continue to run the football but get more explosive plays. In their four games so far, Colorado has produced seven plays of 20 yards or more, with four of those coming against the Bears in the season opener.

For the Buffs to beat USC on Saturday, to even have a puncher’s chance, that needs to change.

As for the Trojans, they ride into Boulder on the heels of a 45-27 loss to Oregon State. That was the first time USC lost at home to the Beavers since 1960.

What should give the CU offense some encouragement is the Trojans defense allowed five consecutive touchdowns to Oregon State. From the jump, quarterback Brendan Lewis and the Buffaloes need to test this USC defense.

The history of CU football has a rich tradition. In a tough start to the 2021 season, the Buffs have a chance to flip the script and end a streak that dates back to 1927.

Photo by AP / Darryl Webb
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Ian St. Clair

Ian is an award-winning sports journalist and a University of Northern Colorado graduate. He’s a Colorado native and has over a decade of experience covering college and professional athletics. He broke into the gambling industry right as Colorado launched legal sports betting in 2020. Ian now manages the sites for some of the biggest gambling markets in North America and is an analyst for PlayColorado.

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