By Eric Christensen

DENVER (CBS4)– The final installment of the Rocky Mountain Showdown in Denver is set for Friday at Broncos Stadium at Mile High. There are many questions about what to expect from CU and new head coach Mel Tucker. Yet the Buffs are still a double digit favorite in their annual rivalry game with CSU.

(credit: CBS)

Tucker takes over for Mike MacIntyre who had won 4 straight against the Rams including last year’s 45-13 blowout victory. But after the Buffs began last season 5-0, they lost their last 7 which prompted the firing of MacIntyre.

So Tucker takes over a team that’s in desperate need of a new culture entering 2019.

Defensive end Terrance Lang of the Colorado Buffaloes hits quarterback K.J. Carta-Samuels of the Colorado State Rams in the first quarter of Friday night’s Rocky Mountain Showdown at Broncos Stadium at Mile High. (credit: Joe Mahoney/Getty Images)

“I want to make sure that when people see us play they see a difference,” said Tucker. “I want them to say that’s a physical football team, those guys are well-coached, they play hard, they play thru the echo of the whistle, they’re organized and play together and they operate with a sense of urgency.”

As for the Rams, they’ve had their own struggles coming off a 3-9 season a year ago. Mike Bobo’s seat in Fort Collins is getting a little warm after last year’s disappointment. But Bobo is hoping the bumps in the road will serve as a learning experience entering his 5th year as the Rams head coach.

Mike Bobo (credit: CBS)

“It was a tough year but I think you learn from things you go through personally and in some things our team went through but I think we grew,” said Bobo. “I’ve never been so excited to see a team play because of the way they’ve responded. I’m usually worried about X’s and O’s but I just want to see this team play as a team. That excites me and I can’t wait.”

This will be the last Showdown to be played in Denver. Kickoff on Friday is set for 8 p.m. The two teams are scheduled to play next year in Fort Collins on Sept. 5.

Eric Christensen

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