Ask Sonny Lubick what he is going to do with his game-free weekend, and he’s got a pretty simple answer.
“I’m going to take my wife out for a beer and a hot dog,” Lubick said.
That is probably just what the doctor ordered for the Rams’ head coach, whose team is off to an 0-2 start for the third time in the last four years following losses to CU and Cal.
But, Lubick admitted he will need to spend some time planning for Houston, who the Rams will face on the road one week from Saturday.
Lubick said the team spent much of the off-week fine-tuning some of the areas where it struggled in its first two games, including an inconsistent special teams unit.
“Special teams could be worth seven points a game just with our punter kicking the ball a little better,” he said.
But the biggest focus of the week, according to Lubick, was work at the tight end position, where senior Kory Sperry was lost for the season from a knee injury against Cal.
“You don’t really realize until he’s gone – that’s a pretty good weapon for us,” Lubick said. “That’s a pretty big void.”
Co-offensive coordinator Dave Lay said the bye week gave the team some much-needed time to prepare Sperry’s replacements.
“Considering the injury, this gave those guys a couple extra weeks to get comfortable,” Lay said. “It gets them some more experience.”
Sperry, who spent the week assisting in the transition at tight end, has a different mission this weekend – taking teammate Damon Morton around his hometown of Pueblo.
“I’m just going to relax and go to Pueblo with Kory,” said Morton. “We’re going to go to Jorge’s (a Mexican food restaurant in Pueblo.) I love Jorge’s.”
Senior wideout Luke Roberts, however, was not interested in joining them.
“I’m definitely not going to Jorge’s,” he said. “I’ll probably go home (to Littleton). I’ll watch some NFL, maybe a little college football.”
Morton said he only watches college football when the Rams win. Considering the team is on a nine-game losing streak dating back to last season, don’t expect to see him in front of the tube much this Saturday.
“I just want to get my mind right for what’s ahead,” Morton said.
Considering the losing streak, Morton said this week was a good chance for the all of the Rams to re-focus.
“It’s kind of a crucial point of our season, we’re 0-2 and we’re looking for a win,” he said. “Coach Lubick has a pretty good track record of coming off bye weeks and winning. Hopefully we get this win and keep it rolling over the next couple weeks.”
Maybe the best way for the Rams to do that is to get back to the basics, which seems to be a theme for this team even on a weekend without a game.
Just ask the head coach.
“I may even cut the grass this weekend,” said Lubick. “It might be therapeutic for me.”
Sept. 1 @ Colorado (in Denver) L, 31-28 (OT)
Sept. 8 vs. Cal L, 34-28
Sept. 22 @ Houston 2:30 p.m.
Sept. 29 @ TCU 5:00 p.m.
Oct. 6 vs. San Diego State 3:30 p.m.
Oct. 13 vs. Air Force TV 3:30 p.m.
Oct. 20 @ UNLV 7:00 p.m.
Oct. 27 vs. Utah 3:30 p.m.
Nov. 3 at BYU TV 12:00 p.m.
Nov. 10 at New Mexico 1:00 p.m.
Nov. 17 vs. Georgia Southern noon
Nov. 23 vs. Wyoming noon
‘Round the MWC
TCU @ Air Force (Thur.)
UCLA @ Utah, 3 p.m.
Wyoming @ Boise State, 6 p.m.
Hawai’i @ UNLV, 6:30 p.m.
San Diego State @ Arizona State, 7 p.m.
BYU @ Tulsa, 8 p.m.
New Mexico @ Arizona, 7 p.m.