Four games and three starts into his college football career, Colorado quarterback Sefo Liufau has impressed his teammates and coaches in a lot of ways.
Most notably, his poise and calmness on the field have been highlighted as major strengths for the true freshman from Tacoma, Wash.
Liufau is also proving to be a heady quarterback who is doing a nice job of reading a defense and spreading the ball around to his teammates.
"He's doing a pretty good job," CU offensive coordinator Brian Lindgren said. "For a freshman he's doing an unbelievable job. He does a nice job seeing the field and he's able to tell you what coverage it was.
"For a young guy who really just got here in August to be doing some of the things that he's doing is pretty impressive. He's got a long way to go, but for a true freshman, the whole staff has been really impressed with how he's carried himself."
Liufau and the Buffaloes (3-5, 0-5 Pac-12) will visit Washington (5-3, 2-3) on Saturday. It'll be a homecoming for Liufau, but to make it a successful trip, one of the keys could be Liufau's ability to share the ball with multiple receivers.
Saturday at UCLA, Liufau completed passes to seven different receivers, including Paul Richardson and Nelson Spruce, who combined for 13 catches for 119 yards. Five receivers caught at least three passes -- the first time that has happened all year. In fact, there has been only one other time -- the season opener against Colorado State -- that four Buffs netted at least three catches.
"It's huge," Lindgren said of getting multiple receivers involved in the passing attack. "(Defenses) can't key on (Richardson) as much and it'll give him more opportunities. But, I think it's good because we've got some other players that are pretty good players, too, and you've been able to see them the last couple of weeks. Any time you can have multiple guys catching the ball it definitely puts some strain on the defense."
Richardson has 57 catches for 984 yards and eight touchdowns. He's on pace for 86 catches, 1,476 yards and 12 touchdowns. All three numbers would be single-season CU records.
Spruce, who led the team with 44 catches and 446 yards in 2012, is on pace for 48 catches for 528 yards this season.
Both players put up good numbers with Connor Wood at quarterback and with Liufau. In recent weeks, however, D.D. Goodson (eight catches for 117 yards in the last four games), as well as the tight ends and running backs have made big catches for the Buffs. Goodson is averaging 16.3 yards per catch -- second on the team to Richardson (17.3).
One receiver who seems to have gotten lost in the shuffle is Tyler McCulloch. The 6-foot-5 junior caught 34 passes a year ago and then had nine catches through the first three games.
In the past five games, however, McCulloch has just four catches -- three of those coming against Arizona State on Oct. 12. Three times he's gone without a catch.
"He's been kind of the fourth receiver rotating in and we've used the tight end a fair amount," Lindgren said. "I think he'll have some opportunities. He definitely brings some things with his size, particularly on the inside. I could see him getting involved more in the final four games."