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Matt Piper and Kyle Goon
Matt Piper and Kyle Goon cover University of Utah sports teams for The Salt Lake Tribune. Matt Piper is on twitter at @matthew_piper, Kyle Goon is on twitter at @kylegoon

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Keys for a Utah win against Colorado

The Utes haven't won on the road this year but that streak should end today at Colorado against one of the worst teams in college football. The Buffaloes rank at or near the bottom of the Pac-12 in virtually every category. The Utes have more talent and as long as they don't take Colorado lightly (like they did last year) and give a solid effort, they should take care of the Buffaloes rather easily.

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Here are some Thanksgiving-themed keys to the game as to why the Utes should win. These guys have been solid throughout the year and should be difference-makers against Colorado.

Star Lotulelei - The big guy anchors Utah's defense and leads the Utes with nine tackles for loss. Utah's defense hasn't played up to expectations this year, can you imagine what it would have been like if Lotulelei left for the NFL last year? Utah fans should be thankful he stuck around.

Reggie Dunn - Dunn has provided some of the few big plays this year with his electrifying returns. Opponents have been mindful of him lately and have kicked away from him which has provided the Utes with some short-field situations. Good field position has been vital for Utah's offense with a young, inexperienced quarterback at the helm.

Sam Brenner - The offensive line was a weak spot early in the season and although it has improved, remains an area of question. Brenner has been the one rock in that lineup, starting the last nine games at left tackle. He has allowed just one sack in 743 plays.

Jake Murphy - Murphy vowed to play well enough that he wouldn't be forgotten when Utah changed offensive philosophies and he has succeeded in that goal as he leads the team in receiving yards (351), touchdown catches (4) and is second in receptions (32). While other receivers have had the case of the drops this season, Murphy has been very sure-handed. If anything the Utes probably should have used him more.

Sean Sellwood and Tom Hackett - When the offense has stalled, these two have bailed it out time and time again with well-placed punts. Hackett proved to be a real find with his rugby-style kicks, placing 11 of his 20 punts inside the 20-yard line. Sellwood leads the league averaging 46.9 yards with his punts.

- Lya Wodraska



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