When is it time for Colorado Buffs football fans to hit the refresh button and change their expectations?
Mel Tucker's Colorado team came out on the short end of a 35-31 score to Southern Cal on Friday night. It was the 14th straight time that USC has beaten Colorado. CU has never beaten the Trojans.
Before the game, most of talk heard around campus and on the fan sites like this one was that Colorado was likely to be blown out by USC. WTF are these people thinking?
USC was 5-7 last year. Their head coach Clay Helton has woken up every morning for the last year wondering if that was the day he was going to be fired. The immense shadow of Urban Meyer has been darkening the days for Helton for many months now.
Despite that, Colorado fans and the local media seem to still be stuck in the belief that USC is a Top 10 team on their way to another national championship led by yet another Heisman Trophy winner...
USC has not won a national championship in 15 years. That's a really long time in Trojan years. It's the reason so many of USC's deep pocketed boosters are trying to get Helton out.
Things haven't been the same in Trojan land since Pete Carroll bolted for the NFL's Seattle Seahawks in 2010. Before he left, however, he led USC to three national championships and had three Heisman Trophy winners.
Those are NOT the USC teams that Colorado lost to on Friday. Sadly, many of the fans and local media still believe that is who came to town. That is not the case.
While Mel Tucker rightly does not believe in moral victories, many of Colorado's fans and local media have been so indoctrinated into believing how good USC is that they have no sense of reality.
All Colorado Buffaloes fans, media and PLAYERS need to know in their heart that the USC team this year is mediocre at best on the national scene and downright unacceptable to USC standards.
Colorado did NOT lose to a powerhouse team on Friday. They lost to a middle of the road team at best. It's sad, because beating USC this year was probably their only chance in the foreseeable future.
The USC boosters who give BIG BUCKS to the program want Urban Meyer. They will most likely get him. And if that happens, the rest of the Pac-12 will soon find USC at the top of the conference mountain once again.
It may take a year or two (or maybe not even that long) for Meyer to restore order in Trojan world, but it will happen. USC is set right smack in the middle of the largest collection of high school football talent in the country.
All those flights that coaches around the country have to take for recruiting are short drives for USC coaches. With the right head coach, USC will be unstoppable.
The same goes for UCLA, by the way. If Meyer joins Chip Kelly in Los Angeles, SoCal will again be the center of the college football universe.
Colorado had a great opportunity to beat a very down USC team in Boulder. That should have been their expectations. USC is not down for long and it doesn't happen very often.
For Colorado to have beaten USC on Friday, all they had to do was play the way they are capable. It would not and should not have been a huge upset.
What is upsetting is that Colorado let a 10 point lead in the 4th quarter collapse. What is upsetting is that Colorado offensive coordinator/QB coach Jay Johnson always seems to abandon Colorado's successful running game when the games get tight, and starts calling really bad, low percentage "superman" passes instead of running the clock.
What is upsetting is that fans are seemingly happy that we came so close to beating a bad USC team.
For six years, Colorado had a bad head coach who spent every opportunity he had with the media trying to lower the expectations that fans had for Colorado football. He kept saying how difficult it was and CU fans should know in their hearts that five wins was pretty good and that once in a while the program would make it to a bowl game.
Thankfully, Mel Tucker is in town now and he's not buying into any of that. Most of Tucker's players have had years of indoctrination by the old coach that mediocre is the best they should hope for.
Tucker's job is to change that mentality among his players. It's up to the media and fan sites to change that feeling among the fans.
It's gonna be a process. And the competition from Los Angeles schools is about to be a whole lot stiffer. It's taken a year and a half for Chip Kelly to get his UCLA team rolling right, and next week they host Colorado.
When opportunity knocks, Colorado needs to learn to answer. Because it may not knock again for a good long while.