The CSU football team will lose a large part of its roster after
this year with over 20 seniors ending their careers as Rams, but
the team is confident it can achieve another winning season.
“We got a good young core coming back and that is the way you
gotta look at it,” sophomore wide receiver David Anderson said.
“You gotta wish the seniors well, but there is no off-season in
football. We gotta be ready to come back and play again.”
The biggest change will come at the quarterback position where
Justin Holland will take the reigns from two-time Mountain West
Conference Offensive Player of the Year Bradlee Van Pelt.
“Holland is our quarterback next year. I am sure he is going to
be just fine,” Anderson said. “He is an All-Colorado player and an
The receiving core will also take a large hit with the departure
of Chris Pittman and Eric Hill.
“We are going to miss Hill, Pittman, Dexter (Wynn) and everyone
else who helped us out,” Anderson said. “It is going to be a big
transition, but I think we can do it.”
Pittman had 56 receptions for 739 yards, but Anderson, a
sophomore, had 72 receptions for 1,293 yards and emerged as the
team’s leading passing target.
Departures of graduating seniors Bryan Save, who led the team
with seven sacks and had a sack in Saturday’s Hula Bowl; Benny
Mastropaolo, who led the team with 89 tackles; and linebacker Drew
Wood, who was one of the team’s most influential leaders; will
leave a gap in the defense. Cornerback Ben Stratton and defensive
end Patrick Goodpaster will look to lead the defense in the 2004-05
Cornerback and return specialist Wynn, who combined for over
1,200 yards in kick and punt returns, will also leave a big hole in
the Rams’ roster.
“Dexter is one of the greatest guys I have ever coached,” head
coach Sonny Lubick said. “He is a great football player and the
team will miss him.”
One of the biggest problems for the team this season dealt with
turnovers. CSU turned the ball over 34 times this season, which
contributed to the team’s 7-6 record and third place conference
“If we don’t turn the ball over against Utah, we beat them and
if we don’t turn the ball over against New Mexico, we beat them,”
Anderson said. “Obviously turnovers can change your whole season
and I think we have to learn from that.”
The Rams will also face one of the hardest schedules in team
history. The 2004 season will begin with a game against Colorado in
Boulder and then a trip to California to play the 2003
split-National Champions, the University of Southern California