- Associated Press - Thursday, November 17, 2016

No. 20 Washington State (8-2, 7-0 Pac-12, No. 22 CFP) at No. 12 Colorado (8-2, 6-1, No. 10 CFP), 3:30 p.m. (Fox)

Line: Colorado by 4½.

Series Record: Colorado leads 5-4.

WHAT’S AT STAKE

Not many if any predicted the Cougars and the Buffaloes would be leading their sides of the Pac-12 conference race this late into the season. The winner takes a big step toward a Pac-12 championship appearance. But there’s still plenty of work to do. The Cougars face Washington in the Apple Cup next week, while the Buffaloes close out the regular season by hosting Utah.

KEY MATCHUP

Colorado CB Chidobe Awuzie vs. Washington QB Luke Falk. An intriguing stat: Colorado is allowing opponents to complete just 50.9 percent of its passes (sixth-best in the nation), while Washington State is completing 74.1 percent (the top mark in the land). Falk can complete a pass if given just a sliver of daylight. Awuzie is one of the best corners in college football.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Washington State: RBs Jamal Morrow, Gerard Wicks and James Williams. They each have a 100-yard game this season and keep defense’s honest in a throw-first offense.

Colorado: OLB Jimmie Gilbert. Colorado needs someone to apply pressure to Falk. Gilbert is among the nation’s leaders in QB sacks with 8½. He’s also forced five fumbles.

FACTS & FIGURES

The Cougars are attempting to win nine straight for the first time since 1930 and improve to 8-0 in conference play for the first in program history. … With his 295th career catch last week, WR Gabe Marks broke former Colorado standout Nelson Spruce’s Pac-12 all-time receptions record. … Washington State had a punt return for a score last week against Cal - the first since 2005. … Colorado will induct a dozen members into its athletics hall of fame, including receiver Michael Westbrook (1991-94). He may be most famous for hauling in a pass from Kordell Stewart during the “Miracle at Michigan” in 1994. … QB Sefo Liufau is one TD pass away from tying Cody Hawkins (60, 2007-10) for most in a career at Colorado. Liufau has already set or tied 84 school marks.

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AP college football website: collegefootball.ap.org

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