Thursday, November 29, 2018

Hey Sam Metivier: Jim Leavitt SHOULD ABSOLUTELY Be the Next Head Coach at Colorado

Jim Leavitt SHOULD ABSOLUTELY be the next head coach of the University of Colorado football team.

Why?
  • The guy loves Boulder and has coached here before. 
  • His family loves Boulder.
  • The players on the team LOVE the guy. 
  • He is one of the very best defensive minds in all of college football.
  • He's been a finalist for the Broyles Award for the top assistant in college football.
  • He's a winner and has been a head coach before. 
  • He wants to be a head coach again.
  • He was the primary reason Colorado won 10 games in 2016.
  • He would make the Buffs a winning team in year one. 
  • To piss off Boulder's Snowflakes, who care nothing about football anyway but are now determined that Leavitt not be the head coach.
  • To help Sam Metivier get over his emotional baggage that has absolutely NOTHING to do with Jim Leavitt.
Snowflakes are annoying, but not as annoying as Metivier. He writes for The Ralphie Report, so one would assume that he could write an article about Leavitt based in reality. 

In one of a series about possible coaches that Colorado might hire, Metivier starts it like this:
"We’re begrudgingly writing up Jim Leavitt because too many of you have clamored for him on Twitter and in the comments. Fine."
"Too many of you"? Really? It doesn't seem "fine" with you Sam. It seems like maybe you have some deep-seated issue that has been burning in your soul for a long time, certainly longer that you have been aware of who Jim Leavitt is.

You don't like Leavitt. We get it. But you are not being honest with yourself any more than you are being honest with your readers.

You like to tell the story, over and over, that Leavitt was fired from his last head coaching job at South Florida for "hitting a player" and then "lying about it"!

Wow. That sounds horrible! Right?

What about the rest of the story, Sam? You fail to mention that Leavitt vehemently denied the allegations and the school later had to PAY Leavitt $2.75 MILLION for wrongful termination.

Then, later in the story, you say that Leavitt "yells"! Oh my gosh, a football coach who yells! Who ever head of such a thing? Have you ever tried to talk to more than a hundred people spread around a football field without yelling?

Who yelled at you in the past that has you so angry Sam? It wasn't Jim Leavitt.

Fear not, Sam, the snowflakes in Boulder won't allow CU to hire him. They were offended by McCartney "praying" for crying out loud. How could they allow someone who has "allegations" against them to be the coach of the team they don't watch anyways?

The players love Jim Leavitt. That should tell you something. 

MacIntyre didn't like him because Leavitt was good at what he did, and that made MacIntyre look bad in his own mind. Never mind that Leavitt helped make Mac the coach of the year. Once Leavitt was gone, Mac went back to his old losing ways again.

Fortunately, Rick George knows Jim Leavitt a lot better than you do, Sam. Even so, he has to be aware of the flurry of snowflakes that reside here in Boulder.

Remember that Mike Leach was also accused of "mistreatment" by a player while he was coach at Texas Tech. Leach denied it. He got fired and spent several years doing TV work before being hired at woebegone Washington State. The WSU Cougars have won 36 games in the last four years. He's also a candidate for national coach of the year.

How great would it be if Colorado averaged nine wins a year? But only if it doesn't hurt your feelings.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Colorado Buffs Lose Again (Not a Surprise)! A look at the "Offensive" Coaches

After a dismal six game losing streak led to the firing of Mike MacIntyre last Sunday, the Colorado Buffaloes had one last chance to pull it together, get a win, and go to a bowl game. Sorry Charlie, the Buffaloes imploded.

The defense played well yet again, but even their strong effort could not overcome three interceptions (including two pick-sixes in the first two minutes) and two muffed punt fumbles. The 5 turnover implosion in the first half directly led to 24 points for California.

Some fans had hoped that the incredibly predictable play calling and overly conservative tendencies on offense might be left behind once MacIntyre was let go and Chiaverini was able to call plays on his own. Alas, twas not to be.

The phrase " Nothing to Lose" apparently meant nothing to the offensive coaches. If they were trying to audition to remain with the Buffaloes for the new head coach, someone should tell them it is time to polish up their resumes for jobs at a lower level.


Kurt Roper (QB coach and interim HC):


QB coach and interim head coach Kurt Roper was hailed as a savior when the Buffs started 5-0. But as the competition got better Steven Montez became less and less effective. 

During the first six games of the losing streak, Roper could rightly say he wasn't responsible for the predictable play calling. During the last week, however, as interim head coach Roper could have had play caller Darrin Chiaverini change things up a bit and get less predictable. It didn't happen. 

Also, Montez ended the season with almost identical stats from his "up and down" sophomore year. Looking back at both seasons, what exactly did Roper provide regarding production that wasn't there the year before? Nothing.


Darrin Chiaverini (Wide Receiver and co-OC):


Darrin Chiaverini came to Colorado as a returned Buffs hero from Texas Tech three years ago as recruiting coordinator and then co-offensive coordinator. 

He wasn't ready. Any thoughts that he had carried that Texas Tech gun-slinging swagger back to Colorado, but was sublimated to MacIntyre and Brian Lindgren before this year, was put to rest during the last half of the season. And then lowered into the ground in the last game. 

He's a good recruiter of skill position guys but it's the Hogs up front that make a great team.

Klayton Adams (O-Line and Co-OC):


Klayton Adams has had four years to put together a decent (or at least cohesive) offensive line. It never materialized. 

This guy is in way over his head at the Power Five level. He fiddled and fiddled all season, and meanwhile the program burned.

Gary Bernardi (Tight Ends and H-Backs):


Gary Bernardi should have been gone years ago. But we all know MacIntyre held loyalty to his buddies above and beyond any fealty to his team or the University of Colorado.

Darian Hagan (Running Backs):



Darian Hagan is the only guy on the offensive side of the ball who seems to know what he is doing. In his second stint as Running Backs coach, Hagan continued to provide Colorado with a 1000 yard runner. His 1K charges have included Phillip Lindsay, Hugh Charles, Rodney Stewart and Travon McMillian this year.

Imagine what these guys could have done with a dominant offensive line in front of them. Add in some imaginative play calling and WOW!

Recommendations: The Buffs new head coach pretty much needs to clean house with a couple exceptions on the offensive side of the ball.


Roper, Adams, and Bernardi (the MacIntyre Posse) need to head on down the road with Mickey Mac. MacIntyre and his buddies need to head back to the Group of Five because they are WAY out of their league at the Power Five level.

Chiaverini needs to spend more time learning from a good offensive coordinator before taking on that role again. It's definitely a learning curve. Look at Eric Bieniemy. He was a mess as an OC while at Colorado, but now he is one of the hottest coordinators in the NFL after spending time learning from the great Andy Reid. 

Hagan produces good running backs year after year. He does have an annoying tendency to find little guys like himself. One of the old head coaches he worked for once said that he'd like Darian to find a running back that he has to look up to. That's good advice.

Friday, November 23, 2018

MacIntyre is Gone: Time to Go All Out Against Cal

Despite protestations to the contrary, there is still one game that separates Colorado from yet another lost season. The regular season ending game against California is that game.

After six years of preaching the acceptance of mediocrity, Mike MacIntyre is no longer the coach of the University of Colorado football team. All most of us can express is profound thanks that AD Rick George finally saw the light.

In defense of George, he did not hire Mike MacIntyre. He was inherited with the job. And, truth be told, the state of the Colorado football program was not good when MacIntyre arrived.

Over the last several weeks of his tenure in Boulder, MacIntyre told us all that over and over. Instead of focusing on the Buffs ever growing losing streak, MacIntyre told us about how great he was.

He said that he "took over San Jose State when they were the worst team in Division 1 football" and turned them around. But did he? They haven't had a winning season since MacIntyre left. If he had turned the program around they should have been moving in the right direction. Maybe MacIntyre got lucky with QB transfer David Fales, who set all sorts of records at SJS before heading off to the NFL.

He said that Colorado was the "worst Power 5 team in the country" and that he had turned them around. Five last place finishes in the Pac-12 South in six years is not turning anything around. Like he did with Fales at SJS, MacIntyre got lucky with defensive coordinator Jim Leavitt that AD Rick George foisted upon him. 

But to Mac, everything good was due to his brilliant coaching. Everything bad, and there has been a lot of it in the last six years, was somebody else's fault. Always.

  • First coach ever to win national coach of the year and then have a losing record the next year. Not his fault.
  • Never beat a higher ranked team in 20 tries. Not his fault.
  • Went 0-9 the last two years in games in which Colorado would have qualified for a bowl game. Not his fault.
Now he's gone, and it is indeed his fault. Good riddance.

Despite the horrible efforts of MacIntyre, the Buffs can still qualify for a bowl game by beating California tomorrow.

Go Buffs! Lay it all on the line and bring home that 6th win.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Portrait of a Colorado Buffaloes Fan Who Became Fed Up

 Note: This was written as a comment on fellow Buff fan site cuatthegame.com
yesterday after I could no longer fathom the thought of Mike MacIntyre continuing as coach for the University of Colorado's Golden Buffaloes football team. 

Today, AD Rick George finally fired MacIntyre. Do not think my post had anything do to with the firing other than to help represent the thoughts of many CU BUFFS fans.

I've been a fan of CU Football since the 1980s when Bill McCartney turned the fortunes of Colorado football around. It's nothing personal against MacIntyre. All I want is a clean program and a winning program. If a coach cannot do both, he needs to move on. 

The onus is on AD Rick George now to find the right person for the job. I trust that he will do so. And I can go back to being an active supporter of the University of Colorado football program.

 


"I want to send my heartfelt thanks to Les Miles for giving hope to Colorado football fans for a couple days. After another lost season, it was exciting to be excited about something having to do with football again.

Alas, twas not to be however. Instead, the best coach available is going to a basketball school. And the University of Colorado will continue to be mired in the mediocrity of being neither a football school or a basketball school.

And, as Mickey Mac has preached for six years, we should be happy, excited, and satisfied that we might win six games.

I’ll pass, thanks. I hope for the players that they make a bowl game this year. But I won’t be spending any more of my time and money supporting the football program with MacIntyre as the head coach.

Thanks go out to Rick George for building a beautiful facility… But remember that the fans don’t get to enjoy those facilities.

We base our support on wins and losses. I don’t care at all about the fancy locker rooms and video games for the players unless it helps build a winning team.
It hasn’t. But CU doesn’t seem to care. Why then oh why should I?"

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

The Mike MacIntyre Era in Boulder is Over... Or is It? Hint: It is

Late yesterday, Denver's ABC affiliate reporter Troy Renck (@TroyRenck) reported that the University of Colorado and head football coach Mike MacIntyre had agreed to part ways following the season. Renck's article cited "multiple sources" but none were (willing to be?) named. 

In journalistic jargon, "multiple" means anything more than one. Equally troubling is that the posting does not even attribute where the sources might be from. Are they from the office of the athletic director Rick George? Are they from the office of CU president Bruce Benson? Or are they from the next two guys on the bar stools to the right? Who knows?

Rick George issued an interesting statement earlier today in response to the story from Renck:
“We do not comment on speculation or unsubstantiated rumors with anonymous sources. Let me just say I have made no decisions regarding the future of the football program. ”
Some are calling the statement a refuting of the story, but that's not really what it says. The key words in the statement are "unsubstantiated" and "anonymous" if you want to be a stickler for word usage. George did NOT say that MacIntyre shall remain the head coach of the CU football team beyond this season.

The AD also did not say that he and MacIntyre had not talked and come to a conclusion as to the end of the MacIntyre era at Colorado. It very well may be that George and MM have indeed come to an agreement about how and when to end the CU-MacIntyre relationship in the near future. In other words, George did not say the ABC report was untrue.

If the report is true, George's statement that has "made no decisions regarding the future of the football program" is merely an indication that he has not yet decided upon the next coach. It will all unfold over the next couple weeks.

The university and George right now have another problem. The leak of this makes CU look bad in the eyes of current and prospective players. It also does not make them look good in the eyes of the public. Blah, blah, blah, right?

The report, premature as it may have been, energized the Colorado football fan base a great deal. Many longtime fans and donors have not been happy with the direction of the football program under MacIntyre. 

MM has been willing to take credit for bringing the Buffs out of the deep hole they were in when he arrived, but in fact, six years in he has only one winning season under his belt. 

Two more losses this year will put Colorado at the bottom of the Pac-12 South for the 5th time in six years. It's more than time for a change. 

Rick George is responsible for the future of athletics at the University of Colorado. He knows that. He knows how important the CU football program is to the university. He was there when Bill McCartney and Bill Marolt took CU to its greatest heights on a national scale. He will not let his alma mater down.

By the same token, this will be the first major hire that George has made. He wants to make sure it is a good one. One that will cement his legacy. It's the reason that he has "made no decisons" about the future of the Colorado football program.

But that decision is indeed coming, for the better of the University of Colorado.

GO BUFFS!









Saturday, November 10, 2018

MacIntyre's Losing Streaks Continue: Colorado Falls Hard Against Washington State

Mike MacIntyre is still in possession of an incredible 0-fer since he became head coach at Colorado. For the 18th or 19th straight time (depending on your source or poll), MacInytyre's Buff squad has fallen to a higher ranked team. Today, #8 Washington State put a thumping on Colorado at Folsom Field 31-7.

In addition to never beating a higher ranked team while at Colorado, MacIntyre was also 0-1 against ranked teams while at San Jose State.

The loss to the Washington State Cougars was the fifth straight for Colorado since starting the season 5-0. In addition, going back to last season, it was the 8th straight loss for CU in games in which the Buffs could have become bowl eligible.

 On the other sideline at Folsom Field, WSU coach Mike Leach won for the very first time at Colorado, going back to his days at Texas Tech. He was 0-4 before the game, but has now broken through in Boulder.

Washington State is now 9-1 on the season and ranked #8 in the nation. Colorado has gone from 5-0 and ranked to 5-5 with a strong chance of finishing the season with a losing record for the 5th time in MacIntyre's six years.

After Colorado's collapse this season, Athletic Director Rick George faces a big decision. Firing MacIntyre could cost the program up to $10 Million

On the other hand, keeping MacIntyre could cost the school millions more. Fans have already started abandoning the program, and Folsom Field had many empty seats for the game today. The university announced a "crowd" of some 45,000 for the game, but those were clearly tickets sold. There were nowhere near that number in attendance.

Unless something is done to reinvigorate the fan base, the University of Colorado risks losing fans by the bushel. After spending upwards of $200 Million to upgrade facilities to be among the best in the nation, the program itself continues to fester in mediocrity under MacIntyre after almost six years.

The fans and supporters of the football program and the university are not happy. The investment of time and money is NOT paying any dividends.
 

Friday, November 9, 2018

Colorado vs Washington State: Which Streak Will Come to an End?

In about 18 hours, we'll know for sure which streak(s) will come to an end.

The Streaks:

  • Colorado has lost four games in row, after starting the season 5-0.
  • Colorado has lost seven straight in games that would have made them bowl eligible since last season.
  • Mike MacIntyre has lost 17 straight (0-17) to higher ranked teams since coming to Boulder in 2013.
  • Washington State has won five straight games since USC and the Pac-12 executive staff combined to deal the Cougars their only loss of the year.
  • Washington State head coach Mike Leach is 0-4 coaching at Folsom Field going back to his days at Texas Tech before Washington State.
  • Unlike MacIntyre, Leach has numerous wins over ranked teams, including five over TOP 5 teams, including #1 Texas in 2008.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Mike MacIntyre's Colorado Buffaloes Edge Closer to Irrelevence... Again

Over the last two seasons, Mike MacIntyre's Colorado squad has now fallen to 0-7 in games in which they could have become bowl eligible. Add that 0-17 mark against ranked (or higher ranked) teams in the Mickey Mac era, and things do not look good going forward with Top 10 Washington State headed to town.

The last article pointed out that the Arizona game was probably the most important in MacIntyre's career. That being the case, the Buffaloes still found a way to lose to a 3-5 team.

It was not a surprise that they lost. What was very surprising was to be found around the Boulder campus, The Hill, and Downtown. For the first time on a game day all year, the number of folks in Colorado football gear were few and far between. No casual observer would ever have guessed the Buffs were playing a game that day.

It was very quick fall from what had become a very active and supportive student body. 5-0 and the students could not wear enough black and gold. Crash and burn at home after having a 28 point lead against one of the worst teams in a Power Five conference, and the students stopped caring.

It will be interesting to see how the game against Washington State turns out. The Cougars still have an outside chance to make the playoffs for the National Championship. The Buffaloes, on the other hand, are hoping and praying to end their goose egg in bowl eligibility games.

Which team will be more motivated?  The Cougars have a coach in Mike Leach with 15 winning seasons in 17 years. The Buffs have a coach with two winning seasons in eight years and is likely headed to another losing season this year.

Which team will have the loudest fans in the stadium? How many fans will bother to show up at all? How many students will go to the game? How many will even care that there is a game?

Tick. Tock. The timer is counting down on what was once a promising season. Does Colorado pull out a win and make it to the Cheez-It Bowl or do they settle for staying in last place yet again?

Does anybody care either way? 

"You are what your record says you are.” — Bill Parcells

Friday, November 2, 2018

Colorado's Mike MacIntyre Faces Career Defining Moment Tonight at Arizona

Mike MacIntyre, the man who was hired to revive a moribund Colorado program back in 2012, now finds himself on the precipice of having his reputation as a coach pushed over the edge of a cliff.

During his six years leading Colorado, MacIntyre has led the Buffs to four last place finishes in the Pac-12 South, and one remarkable 10 win season in 2016. That season was so unexpected that MacIntyre was awarded a number National Coach of the Year awards.

Those 10 wins out of 12 regular season games in 2016 made everyone think that MacIntyre was indeed the man with the magic touch. Unfortunately, it also appeared to many that it made MM think the same about himself, and that he alone was responsible for the remarkable turnaround.

Unfortunately for the University of Colorado and their head coach, much of the credit for that one winning season should have been given to defensive coordinator extraordinaire Jim Leavitt, who in two seasons turned around the Buffs defense from one of the worst in the country to one of the best. MacIntyre did not like that the DC he was forced to hire was being given so much credit, so he claimed all the credit for himself and Leavitt left Boulder for more money and personal appreciation in Eugene as DC for the Oregon Ducks.

After Leavitt left, Colorado lost first the Pac-12 Championship game and then their bowl game in blowouts. Then, in 2017, they lost seven more games. That made them 5-9 after the departure of Leavitt. And once again, they found themselves in the basement of the Pac-12 South.

In 2018, the stars seemed to align for Colorado when a schedule that looked difficult two years earlier all of a sudden was populated with struggling teams with three of their first five against teams with new head coaches. Unexpectedly, Colorado was 5-0 and ranked, which no one expected. Less than halfway through the season they were on the brink of bowl eligibility for only the 2nd time in 11 seasons.

Then, the Buffaloes met their personal Pac-12 nemesis USC in Los Angeles. Colorado has never beaten USC, and once again the Buffs lost to a USC team that is struggling and mediocre at best (at least by USC standards).

The next game after the Trojans, the Buffaloes hosted the Washington Huskies. UW was a favorite to win the Pac-12 and go to the College Football Playoffs, but they've had three losses already (Auburn, Oregon, and Cal) and are out of the Top 25 for the first time since the beginning of the 2016 season.

That left the Buffaloes at 5-2. It also meant that Colorado had lost their last five games when they could have qualified for a bowl game. They were certain they would finally get over that hump last weekend against Oregon State. Not only were the Buffaloes playing at home, they were playing one of the very worst teams in college football. Things could not have been set up any better for the Buffaloes to become bowl eligible and continue their quest for a Pac-12 South crown.

The Buffaloes started slowly, but by halftime had built a 24-3 lead. On their first play from scrimmage in the 2nd half, Colorado's tailback raced 75 yards untouched for a touchdown to give the Buffs a 31-3 lead. 

Everything was falling into place...

Then the "wheels fell off the bus" according to MacIntyre. The coaches and players froze up as the Buffaloes gave up 38 points in the second half and overtime to lose. It was the worst come-from-ahead loss in Colorado's long and storied history. The only other one close in stature was the 52-45 loss to Kansas in 2010. The Buffaloes also led by 28 points in that game.

After the loss to Kansas in 2010, Colorado coach Dan Hawkins was fired with a 19-39 record. In almost 6 years at Colorado, MacIntyre has a record of 30-41. Interestingly enough, if you take away 2016 (the one anomaly year for the Buffs under MM), their record under MacIntyre would 20-37, almost an exact match of that under Hawkins. That said, the two massive failures to protect 28 point leads are not the only thing the two have in common.

Tonight, the reeling Buffaloes play on the road in Tucson against the University of Arizona. The Wildcats started slowly adjusting to new head coach Kevin Sumlin's changes. And their star quarterback and Heisman hopeful Khalil Tate was injured for much of the season. But at 3-5, Tate was finally healthy and last week the Wildcats put a serious butt whipping on the Oregon Ducks by the score of 44-15. The game was in Tucson.

Sumlin finally has his Arizona team buying into what he is trying to do, while MacIntyre and his Buffaloes are trying to salvage a season that began so well for five games but now seems ready to collapse.

If the Buffaloes are trounced, chances are that MacIntyre will have lost the faith of his players and it is likely that the Buffaloes will have a new head coach by the end of the season. If Colorado can pull out a win, they will become bowl eligible and return home to face two ranked team in the upcoming weeks.

The game is likely the biggest in MacIntyre's career. Win and his career goes on. Lose and it is likely the Buffaloes will end the year with 7 straight losses. Lose and MacIntyre's time in Colorado will be coming to an end.

It's a lot of pressure. And pressure changes everything. When things are going well, MacIntyre loves to take the credit. When things go badly, he loves to blame his players. It's gotta be the kids who are full time students as well as having full time jobs playing football, right? It couldn't be the guy making almost $3 million a year, could it?