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Good Read on the Current Situation

Discussion in 'Colorado Football Message Board' started by CUwhit21, Sep 14, 2009.

  1. CUwhit21

    CUwhit21 Club Member Club Member

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    Any remaining Hawk supporters should read this. This guy says it better then many of us who have tried.

    FROM THE MILE HIGH SPORTS DAILY:
    During the past three offseasons, anyone remotely associated with the University of Colorado football program – coaches, players, administrators, media members and fans – have raved about the improved athleticism of the Buffs. To a person, they talked about the noticeable improvement in team speed, size and strength. It was impossible not to notice, or so the story went.

    Fast forward to last Friday night, a September evening in Ohio. CU was on the road, taking on the University of Toledo, and they were getting manhandled. A Big 12 team was being dominated by a Mid-American Conference program, one that finished 3-9 a season ago. Throughout the game, ESPN, the network broadcasting the beat-down across the nation, kept cutting away to Bob Davie, who was working the sidelines. The former Notre Dame head coach had the same report every time: He couldn’t believe how the Rockets were bigger, faster and stronger than the Buffs. It was fitting that the game was played on a Friday night, as CU looked an awful lot like a high school team.

    En route to being embarrassed by a 54-38 count, a defeat that conjured up memories of getting beaten by Drake in 1980 for Colorado fans, one thought kept running through my head: Where’s all this improved athleticism we kept hearing about?

    It’s been fashionable to bash former head coach Gary Barnett on his way out the door in Boulder, lamenting the fact that he left the cupboard bare for newcomer Dan Hawkins. But as Hawk enters his fourth season as the head man at CU, when the roster should be stocked with guys he brought into the program, that’s seeming more and more like spin. Right about now, most Buffs fans are longing for the days of teams good enough to get pasted in the Big 12 title game.

    While Colorado is shockingly weak at multiple positions, two in particular jump out any time the team takes the field.

    First and foremost, and the one that gets most of the attention, is the quarterback. Cody Hawkins is a tough kid, a player who gives it his all every moment he’s on the field – something we all saw late in the game at Toledo when he dove head first into the end zone, getting knocked silly on the play, for a meaningless touchdown. But the fact that a 5-foot-11, 190-pound quarterback is the best option available, which Hawkins clearly is at the moment, speaks volumes about the program’s recent recruiting. How can they not attract a big-time quarterback to play for a Big 12 program? It’s inexcusable.

    The other glaring weakness for the Buffs is at the wide receiver position. They start two walk-ons, Scotty McKnight and Jason Espinoza, a tandem that is arguably the least dangerous receiving duo in Division I football. But the madness doesn’t end there. Their first wide out off the bench was Dustin Ebner, another walk-on. He was followed by Anthony Wright, a converted defensive back.

    Where were Sherman Lang, Markques Simas, Kendrick Celestine, Josh Smith, Chance Blackmon, Jarrod Darden, Andre Simmons and Terdema Ussery? Those are the eight three-star-plus wide receivers Hawkins has recruited during his time in Boulder. Yet for a variety of reasons – academic issues, suspensions, transfers and youth – they weren’t on the field on Friday night. For whatever reason, the Buffs seem much more comfortable with the walk-on du jour catching passes instead of a potential big-time player they recruited.

    It’s a strange situation, one that isn’t new to this season. A year ago, Josh Smith was clearly CU’s most dangerous offensive weapon. Yet he rarely played. Stories would circulate that he was dinged up, trying to justify his lack of contribution on offense. But he’d consistently return punts, one of the most hazardous duties in all of sports. Something didn’t add up, a notion that was reinforced this past offseason when Smith left the program.

    It’s not that the Buffs don’t bring top-flight talent to Boulder; it’s that they don’t play them. Against Toledo, CU started as many walk-ons (three) as they did four- (two) and five-star (one) recruits. In the game, seven walk-ons saw action, as did 11 two-star players. While Colorado trotted out a bunch of mediocre overachievers against Toledo, 23 three- and 10 four-star recruits brought in by Hawkins since he arrived in Boulder were nowhere to be found. That’s a whopping 33 players who should be contributing for the Buffs who aren’t even stepping out onto the field. As a result, the coaching staff is left to fill the gaps with seemingly any warm body available.

    Instead of having blue-chip athletes on the field, Colorado is left trying to compete with walk-ons from Alamosa and Arvada. That’s not going to cut it. Back in 1994, when the Buffs fielded what many believe was their greatest team ever, they had 25 players on the roster from Colorado. This year, there are 51.

    To me, this is the biggest indictment of Hawkins’ tenure at CU. Right now, the Buffs aren’t able to get their best players on the field. Sometimes, it’s their choice. Sometimes, it’s the player’s decision. And on occasion, it’s been a third-party or injury sitting them down. Regardless, it’s happening at an alarming rate.

    Why is Colorado getting physically dominated by CSU and Toledo? Because they have inferior athletes on the field. That’s acceptable when the Buffs take on Oklahoma or Texas. It’s not when they line up against teams from non-BCS conferences.

    When Hawkins was hired, he inherited a program that had suffered only three losing seasons in the past 21 years. Two games in to his fourth season, CU is well on its way to a fourth straight, counting the regular season and bowl games. If the coach hopes to turn things around and improve upon his abysmal 13-26 career mark with the Buffs, he needs to get some talent on the field. He could find some by simply playing his own recruits.



    http://milehighsports.com/Article.asp?id=1499544&spid=
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2009
    2HellNback likes this.
  2. BuffFan

    BuffFan Member

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    Very sad to read, but can’t fault the articles accuracy. Nice find.
     
  3. TheRoyale90

    TheRoyale90 Member

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    Brutal. I haven't been posting much these last few days because I just feel worn out but I had to comment here. This is what the program has become. hawk is more interested in sending messages to his players than winning. Soon our attendance will drop to historic lows, our revenue stream will dry up, few quality players will want to take a chance on us. The circle will be complete. The hardest part for me to deal with is knowing beyond the shadow of a doubt that hawk isn't going anywhere. He will be here till Jan. 31st 2013. I saw the article about his 3 million dollar buyout and my heart just sank. 3 million? We're so far in debt we'd have a hard time coming up with 300k. hawk and his dime store zen, his "groupings" of walk-ons and his never ending stream of excuses will be the death of this program.
     
  4. Buffarino

    Buffarino Math - how does it work? Club Member

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    I knew it was bad, but I didn't know it was that bad. 33 3* and 4* players recruited who didn't even see the field on Friday? Are you ****ting me?:bang:
     
  5. TheRoyale90

    TheRoyale90 Member

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    We won't have to deal with that problem much longer. I'd say our days of even getting 3 and 4 star players are pretty well done.
     
  6. buffs04

    buffs04 Well-Known Member

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    Pathetic.
     
  7. wsp4820

    wsp4820 Sally Club Member Junta Member

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    Let me be clear, I'm not defending the fact that a lot of our talent isn't playing. However, I wonder how many of those 33 are freshmen that really do need to redshirt. For example, Ussery and Darden. I would love to have troo frosh ready to play immediately at WR, but that's not usually going to happen. WR is a very tough position at which to play immediately.

    But, again, that doesn't excuse some of the other decisions/coaching failures that has led to a lot of talented players not seeing the field.
     
  8. 2HellNback

    2HellNback Well-Known Member

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    Good article.

    And while I hate to say it, you have to be honest... Everyone was raving about how good the offense looked, but the truth is, they look awesome cuz they were going up against OUR defense... :lol:

    That... and, in practice, everyone gets to play. In the game, uhhh... I don't know.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2009
  9. Crash Davis

    Crash Davis MA....THE MEATLOAF!!! Club Member

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    I hear what you're saying, but it seems like Talkins is cutting off his nose to spite his face, in this regard. The bottom line is you play your best players. Let the freshmen undergo baptism by fire, if that's what it takes. I would rather lose knowing we at least had our best athletes on the field as opposed to knowing we're holding guys back because we're "building for the future", or the idea that so-and-so has to redshirt this year to ensure good "spacing" at such-and-such position. The problem with that philosophy is it's not fair to the current players, and that's how teams end up quitting on coaches.

    Pete Carroll had no qualms about letting a true freshman play QB, at one of the most powerful programs in the country.

    Play your best ****ing players, already! :sad2:
     
  10. TheRoyale90

    TheRoyale90 Member

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    But hawk said that they were a couple of drops and penalites away from putting up 600+ yards of offense. Man, I wish we had the team from hawk's imagination. They sound great!
     
  11. 2HellNback

    2HellNback Well-Known Member

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    I heard on Jim Rome today that Lane Kiffin came out and apologized, and took responsibility for the Vols not being prepared on offense vs. UCLA.

    It's a pretty sad world when Lane Kiffin makes you cringe at the fantasy OUR coach lives in.
     
  12. wsp4820

    wsp4820 Sally Club Member Junta Member

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    I don't agree that playing talented players immediately is always the best policy...if they aren't ready to play yet. Maybe they're not big enough physically or tough enough mentally to deal with the rigors of college football. Just because they run a faster 40 doesn't mean they are ready to play. If you're going to do a bigger disservice to the player by throwing them in immediately, it just isn't a good policy. I think the Barkley thing may be the exception that proves the rule. He's clearly a special case to be ready for so much so soon -- both physically and mentally -- and that is evident in the fact he's the first troo frosh SC has ever started a season with.

    Now again, I'm not trying to defend not playing our talent. It's clear that there is more to this story than just keeping out guys that can use a red-shirt season. But, I do think some of the 33 players the guy is referencing are players that shouldn't be on the field yet.
     
  13. darth-horax

    darth-horax Well-Known Member

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    This would explain our lack of productivity on the field.
     
  14. Buffarino

    Buffarino Math - how does it work? Club Member

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    I agree if we're talking about last year's class, with the exception of Simmons (JC guys need to be able to contribute right away). So deduct 7 3* players and 1 4* player. I would expect the majority of the remaining 25 guys to be contributing in some fashion. That they are not is very disappointing.
     
  15. jjbuffs13

    jjbuffs13 Well-Known Member

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    I dont care that we have to redshirt some of the decent players. BUT HOW ABOUT ****ING PLAYING THE GOOD ONES WHO ARENT REDSHIRTING?! **** this coaching staff is driving me up a wall. I am a junior here, meaning that this Hawk has been the coach since my senior year in high school and I have been able to see something like 11 victories at home (since we won at Tech and Baylor I believe). I swear to God if I hear the words "we are close" "were almost there" I am going to lose it. Show some ****ing enthusiasm for the game Dan.
     
  16. wsp4820

    wsp4820 Sally Club Member Junta Member

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    Completely agree.
     
  17. tante

    tante Club Member Club Member

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    this article says it all. Hawkins would rather play guys that buy into his system instead of the most talented. The writing is on the wall and the team is not buying into Hawkins.
     
  18. Hi.O

    Hi.O Member

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    Well Major not playing isn't surprising , we're pretty deep at that position. He'll get his chances though.
     
  19. BuffFan

    BuffFan Member

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    Wow thats brutal.

    I think CU needs to get the most talented players on the field ASAP.


    Losing like we did, to who we did, has already and will continue to kill recruiting.


    The chance to play early might draw a recruit or two.


    Get the young talent some true game experience in preparation for next year. Three more years, is plenty of time to show the NFL what you got, and a winning program gets more attention.

    We need to trust that more talent is coming, and not save players for the team we hope we will have. As we wait the lack of recruiting will kill us. Look at the Barnett era, we kept hoping he would turn it around and ended up with a bare cabinet. Don’t let history repeat itself; the future is now for this team.
     
  20. WYO1016

    WYO1016 New Member

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    If Hawkins would pull his head out of the clouds and look north at what we're doing up here he'd see that playing freshmen is working very well. One of our starting safeties is a true frosh I didn't even know was on the team until his name came up as a starter. That kid would be Shamiel Gary, and he had 3 interceptions in his first college game and dropped a pick against Texas.

    Age doesn't matter. If the 18 year old kid on the bench is better than the 23 year old redshirt senior, the freshman plays. Period.

    I really feel for you guys this year. You're in almost an identical situation as the one we just got out of with Joe Glenn. Sunshine and rainbows don't win football games. If Hawkins would stop trying to be a nice guy and start to be a hard ass, no bull**** football coach you will win immediately.

    I just hope he realizes all this AFTER this weekend. :smile2:
     
  21. ScottyBuff

    ScottyBuff Well-Known Member

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    The article is very much a parallel to my own thinking about the lack of talent on the field (but not in the program).

    However there is one paragraph that bothers me:

    "Instead of having blue-chip athletes on the field, Colorado is left trying to compete with walk-ons from Alamosa and Arvada. That’s not going to cut it. Back in 1994, when the Buffs fielded what many believe was their greatest team ever, they had 25 players on the roster from Colorado. This year, there are 51"

    I don't mind at all in having lots of Colorado players on the roster, that shouldn't be the issue. The fact that they are walk-ons that were rarely recruited by D-I FBS schools (even MWC teams) is the problem. There are plenty of two-star players in Colorado every season that are HIGH QUALITY football players. CU just isn't signing them, they go to CSU and Wyoming. And beat the Buffs who are playing Zero and One-star walkons.

    However, the "elite" talent will always have to come in from Texas and California. Once those pipelines dry up with our performance we will be forced to compete for those two-star players in Colorado that have been ignored for too long.
     
  22. zbuff

    zbuff Club Member Club Member

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    I would normally agree, but since we're losing anyway with the average athletes that know the playbook, it seems like we'd improve faster, or at least have nothing to lose, by getting the best athletes on the field sooner.
     
  23. Buffsfan09

    Buffsfan09 Member

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    rudy....rudy...rudy...rudy....
     
  24. NuggNinja

    NuggNinja New Member

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    Totally agree, when Toledo is dominating you, a huge lightbulb should go off saying that this strategy isn't working. Rated recruits are rated because of their physical talent and play making ability. Something CU is in desperate need of, right now.

    While they may not be mentally ready, the players Hawkins is playing are not physically ready or capable of matching up against even Non-BCS schools.

    And I think an opportunity to play immediately on a relatively big stage would be a huge plus for a lot of recruits. During one of the SEC games, an announcer noted that the coaches liked playing true freshmen on televised games, so they could tell kids, "look, see freshman can play, that could be you next year."
     
  25. jjbuffs13

    jjbuffs13 Well-Known Member

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    That works for us too.
    Coach: See that kid on the TV?
    Recruit: You mean the one on the sideline?
    Coach: He was in your exact shoes last year, that could be you in the future. Come to CU
     
  26. NuggNinja

    NuggNinja New Member

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    Best seats in the house for some college football games! It's just too bad they don't play at Hawaii every year, and the games probably won't be competitive.

    LOL
     
  27. SJBuff

    SJBuff Club Member Club Member

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    We had this same gripe when GB was our coach. Vickers was constantly on the sidelines and rarely got the ball, Markeesha could have skipped suiting up on Saturdays and the coaches would never have missed him and Bloom and all his speed was mostly idle on the bench.

    This complaint is not new. Most of the time it's pure B.S. but there are some cases, Vickers & Scott for example, where we had playmakers who could have made a difference but ended up watching most of the games.

    The article greatly oversimplifies the issue but it's not completely off the mark either in our case.
     
  28. Chilly

    Chilly Well-Known Member

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    The best QB on the team is always the 2nd string guy.
     
  29. CUBuff98

    CUBuff98 Club Member Club Member

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    Tru Dat!:thumbsup:
     
  30. SINKRATZ

    SINKRATZ Club Member Club Member

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    I am baffled we haven't seen Major yet. I know he is getting over the knee injury last year, but I figured he'd at least be in on special teams, but hasn't played a single snap.

    I just don't get it.
     

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