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Honest thoughts on CSU and where CU needs to look for rivalry

Discussion in 'Colorado Football Message Board' started by Buffnik, May 8, 2014.

  1. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    Taking away my being a fan of the Buffs and the in-state hubbub that surrounds talk of the two schools and the emotions that surround CU and CSU playing each other in almost every sport every year... I want to honestly talk about CSU and where it belongs in the college sports landscape.

    Historically, there's not a ton of success there. That is a drawback for CSU when doing an evaluation. But states grow and times change. Florida State was a women's college and Boise State was a juco many decades after CSU had been playing D1 football, for example.

    What I want to do is take a look at how it might fit in with a BCS conference.

    Enrollment: about 24k undergrad and 7k post-grad. CU is about 26k and 6k, so similar. CSU's numbers may be inflated a bit by offering online degrees, but it is still certainly of a size that makes sense for the big leagues in terms of being able to support big boy athletics. That's also bigger than Oregon State and Washington State, for example. Would be bottom half of a major conference.

    Academics: CSU isn't going to be the crown jewel of a conference here. Some outstanding programs such as veterinary medicine, but overall ranks would put it in the bottom half of a major conference.

    Endowment: Again, a measure of support. CSU is pretty healthy here, better than most non-BCS universities but also would be in the bottom half of a BCS conference.

    Athletics: Some Top 25 years in football during a period that the WAC contract with ESPN led the way with mid-week games and CSU was on national tv as much as anyone. But won a bowl game last year and the program has a higher upside than most non-BCS programs. They've done it before. Men's basketball has had a good deal of recent success. The volleyball program is excellent. We're not talking about a juggernaut in any sport that is going to raise the athletic prestige of a BCS conference, but there is enough there to say that if CSU was in a BCS conference that it would have the resources to compete reasonably well.

    Location: 2013 Census data ranks Colorado as the 22nd largest state (5.3 million people) with the 3rd highest growth rate since the 2010 Census. That's quite a bit bigger than Oregon (3.9 million), a state that supports two Pac-12 programs and then has universities like Portland State that are similar to DU or UNCO. Denver is also the 6th fastest growing city in the country and Fort Collins tends to appear on most of the "Best Cities" lists on which we see Boulder.

    That's just a small snap shot.

    If I was expanding a conference and wanted to bet on a state and a college, CSU wouldn't be a bad choice. The immediate payoff isn't there, but they do have what it takes for long-term sustainability against what would be their new peers. If we were looking at an era of paired rivals within the same state being an important factor, the Pac-12 would have an easy choice to add CSU to pair with CU.

    But on the other side, times have changed. Things are driven by media contracts. Does CSU currently bring additional revenue to existing conference members? Not likely.

    Especially for the Pac-12, expansion talks have given us information on what schools are most valuable. If we're looking at it just from among current MWC members (ignoring the opportunity to poach from the Big 12), San Diego State and Boise State are currently the most valuable. After that, it's New Mexico and UNLV. All of those expand the conference footprint while CSU does not. Even if the Pac-12 became the Pac-16 just through western schools, it appears that CSU would be left out.

    Maybe the Big 12 would take a look. All the talk has been that if the Big 12 goes to 12 teams that Cincinnati and BYU are its targets. Those are easily justified. BYU with its elite fan support and international following. Cincy with its elite basketball status and recent football success in one of the larger US states. But what if the Big 12 wanted to expand beyond that? The data shows that going into Louisiana or Tennessee or adding more Texas schools or beating the Pac-12 to New Mexico would be preferable to CSU.

    In my opinion, it simply doesn't look good for the Rams in the conference realignment sweepstakes.

    The best opportunity is pretty unlikely: Pac-12 expands to 16 through Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and Kansas leaving the Big 12. In the resulting shake-up, the remnants of the Big 12 (Baylor, Texas Tech, Kansas State, Iowa State, TCU - I'm not counting West Virginia) need to build a new conference. Within that footprint, the additions of LA Tech, Tulsa, New Mexico, CSU, and BYU could all make a lot of sense. So could some others, but I think CSU would have a good chance of being in that mix to get an invite.

    On an emotional level as a sports fan, I love local rivalries. But since I can't see a scenario where CSU ends up fighting in the same weight class as CU, I can only see the football series as something that diminishes CU while propping up CSU. I can't see that changing. Other sports are different. Football is separate.

    With no reasonable expectation that CSU will ever join the Pac-12 or any BCS conference, CU needs to drop the RMS series as soon as possible. CU should never play a game in Fort Collins, whether or not the new stadium gets built up there. It's time to move on and let CSU be what it's going to be and for CU to start being what it is.

    Without the local rivalry in football, CU needs to focus on border rivalries. These are some of the best around anyway. Ohio State/Michigan. Texas/Oklahoma. Oregon/Washington. Florida/Georgia.

    There's a lot to pick from here for CU. Utah is already the paired rival for Pac-12 play. We've also got things going pretty well with Arizona. We're pretty set for the future within our conference.

    Outside of it is another story. Wyoming gives us a long history in basketball and can be a schedule add for football every decade or so. New Mexico has a lot of potential for basketball and even has an outside chance of being a Pac-12 expansion member some day. Wouldn't hurt to add a few football games with them. Oklahoma shares a bit of a border, but even in the Big 8 it never rose to a rivalry feel. Still fun to play, though, and the hoops game with OSU was of national interest. Kansas is a good one in terms of proximity and history - with the problem being that its basketball program is beyond having a border rivalry that didn't exist when we were in the same conference and its football program doesn't measure up to what CU is. KSU doesn't have a lot in common with CU. Both are fun to play every now and then, though. Bottom line is that CU should try to schedule all of these with some regularity, but none are going to become a true border rivalry.

    That leaves Nebraska. They're coming back on the football schedule. That's the big one that was good for everyone. When that rivalry was at its peak, so were both or our football programs. Nebraska has also built a new basketball facility and is committing to its program. Danced this year. In WBB and Volleyball, they're great programs to play. This is the rivalry that makes sense. And it makes sense for both schools.

    Football should be a game in the first month of the season every year similar to how the Notre Dame-Michigan game was for all those years. Other programs (MBB, WBB, VB, Golf, T&F) should get each other on the schedule every year since it's easy travel and good competition for post-season resumes.

    Bring back Nebraska as the Colorado rival and expand it to all sports. Leave CSU in the past for football (except maybe a game or two a decade like a Wyoming or New Mexico), but keep playing the Rams in other sports every year. Other than that, focus on nurturing rivalries with Utah and Arizona. That is the CU rivalry footprint and our best future.

    This needs to happen.
     
    J.R. Ewing likes this.
  2. Burrito Palazzo

    Burrito Palazzo huff my smug Club Member

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    FSU is still a women's college.

    Semper Gumby
     
  3. Darth Snow

    Darth Snow Hawaiian Buffalo Club Member Junta Member

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    I literally can't read that many words about CSU. Good luck.
     
  4. Darian3Hagan

    Darian3Hagan '89 Player of the Year Club Member

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    I was just thinking that this morning. I really don't hate anyone in the PAC and my hate for Nebraska still burns white hot. Lets do this.
     
  5. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    I literally couldn't write that many words about CSU. About halfway through, stream of consciousness took it to a different place and I had to change my original thread title. :lol:
     
  6. Darth Snow

    Darth Snow Hawaiian Buffalo Club Member Junta Member

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    just glanced at the second half of your post. You tricky bastard!
     
  7. sackman

    sackman Club Member Club Member

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    I would be perfectly happy if I never witnessed another CU/NU game in my life. screw them. I don't want to legitimize their existence.
     
  8. CUFan

    CUFan Welcome back Club Member

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    Think they have a legit shot due to Denver market and attempting to get their act together. Would end series with them no matter what though. No gain for CU.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  9. MtnBuff

    MtnBuff Not allowed in Barzil 2 Club Member

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    CSU has multiple occassions when they were successful of being the lowest rated bowl game not including a Sun Belt team. Their TV rating when on ESPN, etc. have also been terrible. Their average home attendance in the glory years of Sonny didn't break 30k and now is pushing below 20k.

    The support, financially and otherwise simply isn't there. They can't generate enough paying eyes to justify inclusion into a major conference and the payout that would generate.
     
  10. TimmyDUBs

    TimmyDUBs Dirty haole Club Member

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    It kind of touches upon a thought I had the other day. Why/how is it that Oregon State, Washington State, Kansas State, OK State etc all got in on BCS/power conferences while CSU has always been stuck one step behind. There must have been some moment in the 70s/80s or perhaps 90s where they made a fateful decision that has kept them behind.
     
  11. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    A good deal of that was state politics. KSU was tied to the coattails of KU, OSU with OU, etc. When CU went to the Big 8, CSU wasn't dragged with us and I believe that was where the separation happened that left them behind the BCS conference conversation. It was a lot of years of not playing in football (or only intermittent games) once CU was in the Big 8. It was only toward the end of the McCartney era that it became pretty much an annual thing... and he was smartly against that happening. Another example of the CU leadership changing in the administration and it making decisions that went against the interests of CU football.
     
  12. BuffG

    BuffG Well-Known Member

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    CSU is behind CC and DU in endowment. 254th overall nationally as of 2012. Their support is weak by every measurement. I'd be all for continuing the football rivalry if they had a fan base relative to the size of their enrollment. They don't and so it's a waste
     
  13. TimmyDUBs

    TimmyDUBs Dirty haole Club Member

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    Sorry Nik, I'd rep but I'm all out.

    Yeah, it looks like we bailed the Mountain States Conference in 47 on our own. When it dissolved in 62, CSU went independent until 68 when they joined the WAC and have basked in mediocrity ever since.
     
  14. CsquaredCC

    CsquaredCC Well-Known Member

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    The bolded statement is a complete bald faced lie which you have been called out on numerous times, but still attempt to state as a fact over and over again. Just stop already. Its embarrassing at this point.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2014
  15. sliderNcider

    sliderNcider MacLovin Club Member

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    CSU's best hope is if Texas/OU leave and the Big12 dissolves. Then they could be in a conf with Iowa St, KSU, Baylor, TCU etc
     
  16. SpacemanSpiff

    SpacemanSpiff Club Member Club Member

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    If Texas/OU leave, likely with 2 more schools, I'm not sure the resulting conference can stay as a BCS conference.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
     
  17. CsquaredCC

    CsquaredCC Well-Known Member

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    Major mistakes were made back in the late 40's and early 50's under President Morgan. http://www.coloradoaggies.com/CSU_on-campus_Stadium_dream.html
     
  18. CarolinaBuff

    CarolinaBuff Weekend Poster Club Member

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    Many on this board having been saying for quite some time now - drop the series with CSU altogether, or maybe just play them once in a while in Folsom. And I'd be all for having an annual game with Nebraska because it would not only give us a rival we really hate as compared to a fabricated rivalry, plus it would almost ensure that we have at least one good non-conference opponent every year.
     
  19. TimmyDUBs

    TimmyDUBs Dirty haole Club Member

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    Front range cycle!!
     
  20. 4DemBuffs

    4DemBuffs Most admired poster Club Member

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    I think you could do both.
     
  21. BuffSurveyor

    BuffSurveyor Club Member Club Member

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    Great thread! Well though out post.

    But let's drop the Nebraska talk.
     
  22. patebuff

    patebuff Downgraded to half a star Club Member

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    Awesome stuff. I think every CU fan would love a rivalry with Nebraska to start back up (well maybe not all). I'm all about this.

    In regards to the Big 12 losing their best members, I'm not sure they would be a Big 5 conference at that point. They would be relegated to a bottom feeder at that point.

    Being a Colorado native, I actually don't mind the CSU game. The problem I have is CU not acting like the bigger program. I know RG is on that and will change. My thought is RG will give CSU the bare pickings. Every game at Folsom, with no revenue sharing, or the series ends. That or a 3 for 4 with no money guarantees to CSU.
     
  23. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    Hey, it's not like Iowa moves your emotions any more than Utah does for us. Maybe over time that will happen, but for a little familiarity to go with both of our new digs would serve us both well (especially since our new conferences are rivals).

    I'm sure things will be a lot more fun & interesting when we play the games that are scheduled than if either of us was playing just about anyone else.
     
  24. MtnBuff

    MtnBuff Not allowed in Barzil 2 Club Member

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    Yup, they averaged a whopping 31,292 for a four game home schedule in 1998, what a highlight to fall back on.

    Makes you long for those glory days as the average tickets sold this year was an awe-inspiring 18,600 per home game. Big 5 conferences are just lining up to get that financial powerhouse in their leagues.

    Hey let's spend hundreds of millions to build a new stadium, we will instantly double our attendance.

    http://archive.coloradoan.com/artic...State-s-football-attendance-sinks-42-year-low
     
  25. J.R. Ewing

    J.R. Ewing Club Member Club Member

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    Agree with the OP.
     
  26. Quattro

    Quattro Banned BANNED Club Member

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    Thought this was fitting...

     
  27. TDbuff

    TDbuff Club Member Club Member

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    I think CSU has a better than average shot with the Big 12. I don't think the Big 12 is going to break up when networks like ESPN are perfectly fine paying them good money to stay afloat. They'll be more open to expanding markets going forward to ensure stability. It's not in their(UT's) best interest to cannibalize their Texas markets and talent any further than they already did with TCU, so they'll look towards random out of state markets. Cincinnati might bring more to the table, but CSU makes more sense for the conference's regional footprint, and they'd be less of a pain to deal with than BYU.

    As far as the Nebraska talk, that rivalry burned bright but it was relatively short lived. Nebraska fans aren't just being jerks when they say it would never approach their Oklahoma rivalry. I feel like it's just another part of the glory years that needs to be let go of so we can move on.
     
  28. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    On Cincy, you might have forgotten about West Virginia being in the conference as a major geographic outlier (I tend to forget about that). The conference needs to bridge that. Cincy's the best choice, by far, of those options. 2nd best is probably Memphis.
     
  29. BehindEnemyLines

    BehindEnemyLines beware the habu Club Member

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    Huck the fuskers.

    Don't wish a visit to stincoln on anyone, let alone our faithful traveling fans. (screw you bohnhead for doing this on your way out the door)

    CU is kind of isolated when you think of possible close rivals. Yes, fort fun is just up the road, but the schools and conferences are heading different directions. In that aspect, I'm not sure continuing the game is sustainable.

    The yoots may become a rival, IF the cougs of bag 'em young U ever fall off their schedule AND we stop wasting time playing the lammies. Might be aways down the road, tho.
     
  30. MtnBuff

    MtnBuff Not allowed in Barzil 2 Club Member

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    I think frankly that the B12 would be the only possible shot CSU would have and for one reason. The B12 is the only conference that has openly and willingly established a system that doesn't make any attempt at having payouts that are relatively equal. They already have a system where UT and OU get much bigger payouts than Iowa State and Kansas.

    If they took CSU into the league CSU would have to accept a permanent lower class status financially. They would still get a lot more than they are getting now but it would be way below what the big names get.
     

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