Colorado State linebacker spices up bulletin board for Air Force

Updated: October 14, 2003, 3:30 PM ET

FORT COLLINS, Colo. -- The college football rivalry between Colorado State and Air Force got a dose of bad blood this week.

Colorado State senior linebacker Drew Wood said he didn't like Air Force in part because of its blocking technique.

"It'll be fun to beat them again because I don't like them," Wood said.

Colorado State (4-3, 1-1 Mountain West) beat the Falcons 31-12 at the academy last year and will host Air Force (6-1, 3-0) on Thursday night.

"Cut blocking," essentially blocking below the waist, is typically used by teams with smaller offensive lines. It is legal as long as other linemen are not also blocking above the waist.

Wood said he has suffered sprained knees in each of the past two years against Air Force because of cut blocks.

"I don't think they're unethical and I don't think they cheat," Wood said Monday. "It's just that the cut block, especially for linebackers, it puts so much strain on your knees. It's so easy for people to get injured."

Air Force coach Fisher DeBerry, through a school spokesman, declined comment.

Meanwhile, CSU coaches are preparing for the Falcons' triple-option offense.

"The one thing we have learned is that if you get too complicated, you're in trouble," CSU coach Sonny Lubick said.

The Falcons are ranked third nationally in rushing offense with 297.4 yards per game and have a talented senior quarterback in Chance Harridge, who averages 72.9 rushing yards per game.

"The key to beating them is getting off the field and getting as many possessions for our offense as we can," said Scott Stanard, CSU's first-year defensive coordinator. "We need to get them into second-and-8 and third-and-8 situations, and make them do things they are not comfortable doing."

Air Force always ranks among the nation's worst passing teams, and this year is no exception. The Falcons rank 115th out of 117 Division I-A teams in passing offense, averaging 106.7 yards per game and fewer than 16 attempts per outing.

"Air Force does not have a good passing game, but they do have a few tricks up their sleeve," Wood said. "But if we stop the run, they are not going to beat us with the pass."

This story is from ESPN.com's automated news wire. Wire index