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The Case for Dan Hawkins

Discussion in 'Colorado Football Message Board' started by Buffnik, Aug 26, 2010.

  1. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    Let's start from the premise that this thing was "burned to the ground" when he took over in 2006.

    I think that is a justifiable statement when you consider the facts (even if the phrasing was insensitive and probably offensive):

    We had finished 2005 on a 4 game losing streak that included the embarrassing 100-6 combined scores against Nebraska and Texas. We hadn't won against a ranked opponent since 2003. We had recruiting restrictions placed on the program from the 2003 scandal. We had terrible relations between the football program and the university, the football program and the local community. Most of our top prospects from the 2003 and 2004 recruiting classes had left, there wasn't much to speak of in our 2005 class, and the 2006 class was looking even worse.

    From that starting point, can a case be made that Dan Hawkins has done a good job?

    Maybe. Is it just possible that last season was a temporary disappointment, a bump in the road to sustained success... not a failure?

    Starting at the time that Hawkins took over:
    The first thing he did was salvage the 2006 recruiting class by bringing in unknown guys like Chap Brown, Jimmy Smith, Jalil Brown and Scotty McKnight, keeping Solder in the fold, and stealing Marquez Herrod from Oregon State at the 11th hour. Instead of going for a quick fix, he has done things the right way by cleaning up the mess and building a new foundation for the future. Restocking the talent, redshirting guys who could help now for the bigger payoff down the line, building a new culture that could be successful on the scoreboard and acceptable to the CU administration, academics, media and community... these things take time.

    They especially take time when at CU it is impossible to restock talent with large JUCO classes. Further, we are located in a state that has only a handful of difference-makers to recruit each year. Making things even more difficult, our traditional out-of-state recruiting hotbeds (California and Texas) have had their flagship programs enjoying some of the greatest success in their histories.

    And they especially take time when this must all be done within an athletic department that was virtually bankrupt at the time Hawkins was hired, had to make some difficult choices in order to get the budget balanced, hasn't been able to make the major facility upgrades for football that other Big 12 programs have been making, and hasn't been able to pay assistant coaches at the same level as most other BCS programs (or offer the security of long-term contracts).

    Because of all this, the record should almost be ignored from 2006-2009. It's practically irrelevant. Only now, after 4 years of building the foundation, should we start judging the success of what he's done based on whether the team is winning a lot of games.

    And we should be appreciative of just how hard the task has been to get us to this point.

    Now we have a roster stocked with Dan Hawkins' guys. There is depth, talent and class-by-class balance in every position group. We have a new culture that includes new team GPA standards, annual APR scores that have been in the passing range every year, and no NCAA sanctions.

    On the AD side, things like: the Pearl Street Stampede, the weekly radio show in Boulder, the Stampede of the state, the upcoming California Stampede, the balanced budget, the emphasis on improving academic support for athletes (and getting some large donations to make that happen), the budget-possible facility upgrades such as stadium lights, new scoreboards, new locker room, general enhancements to Dal Ward, the practice bubble, etc., investments in other sports so that football doesn't have to pay so much of everyone's budget... and, especially, the Pac-12 announcement.... these things have all set up CU football to be able to flourish into the future.

    So can we go back to what Mac said last year when asked about Dan Hawkins' job performance? He said, paraphrasing: "to build a tall building you have to dig a deep foundation." Isn't that exactly what Dan Hawkins has been doing? Isn't that also what Mike Bohn's been doing?

    Maybe, just maybe, we are doing things the right way and just need to be a little more patient. The new era of CU football starts on September 4th.

    :gobuffs:
     
    Chilly likes this.
  2. Duff Man

    Duff Man Moderator Club Member Junta Member

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    The thing I cannot get past, no matter the talent level, is how we have looked against teams like Montana State, Eastern Washington, Toledo, etc. We got beat by two of those teams and it took a late pick six to beat the other. Down talent level or not, a good coach has different results in those games.
     
  3. White_Rabbit

    White_Rabbit Club Member Club Member

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    Better beat CSU.
     
  4. Unleash Hell

    Unleash Hell Well-Known Member

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    While I agree with that, if you compare that to Mac. He lost to Wyoming, Kansas st twice and CSU in his first 4 years. Those teams then were pretty comparable to MSU, EWU, Toledo now.
     
  5. Buffarino

    Buffarino Math - how does it work? Club Member

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    CU won 7 games the year the program was supposedly 'burned to the ground'. Hawkins has not matched that win total in 4 years. In my mind, there is no case to be made for Dan Hawkins. I want him gone yesterday.
     
  6. Sexton Hardcastle

    Sexton Hardcastle Club Member Club Member

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    Please stop comparing Hawk to Mac. Please.
     
  7. Duff Man

    Duff Man Moderator Club Member Junta Member

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    To buy into that comparison, you have to believe that Hawkins and Mac took over programs in the same state. While we were in bad shape in 2005, I think we were in infinitely worse shape in 1982, plus Mac took over in May of that year. At least Hawkins had a whole spring with the team before his first season.
     
  8. Darth Snow

    Darth Snow Hawaiian Buffalo Club Member Junta Member

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    Montana state is far worse than any of those losses. Good coaches don't let vastly undertalented teams beat them, especially at home.

    Other counter: the simple mistakes that define Hawks teams.

    Other Counter: Mac kept changing things until he got it right. Like assistant coaches. Hawk has not.
     
  9. Sexton Hardcastle

    Sexton Hardcastle Club Member Club Member

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    What were we ranked last year in fewest penalties per game? Like 118 out of 120? In year four?!!
     
  10. Unleash Hell

    Unleash Hell Well-Known Member

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    Hawk is not Mac, but you have to be fair with their starts. very similar.

    Good point about the start time with mac, although I still think '05 was in far worse shape than most think. I am not a Hawk supporter anymore. I don't think he is a good coach, I just see some things that this could be a good year regardless of coach.

    Kansas st then was pretty bad
     
  11. Sexton Hardcastle

    Sexton Hardcastle Club Member Club Member

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    Maybe in year 1-3. Mac actually showed improvement in year four going 7-5. Dan regressed in year four.

    And like BB said, Mac was working with less at the time. Sure 05 was bad, but 81 was an embarrassment to everyone associated with the school.
     
  12. Ruckus

    Ruckus Peep my words. Club Member

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    Penalties have been one of my biggest concerns. How many times have we had a delay of game or have to call a timeout at the beginning of a quarter or after a timeout? Too many men on the field, false start, illegal procedure, etc. These things happen way too much.
     
  13. CarolinaBuff

    CarolinaBuff Weekend Poster Club Member

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    That's correct: http://www.teamrankings.com/college-football/stat/penalties-per-game

    But in all fairness, we were always ranked pretty low in fewest penalties per game under both Mac and Barnett throughout their tenures. Not that that makes it acceptable though.
     
  14. Unleash Hell

    Unleash Hell Well-Known Member

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  15. Unleash Hell

    Unleash Hell Well-Known Member

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    A lot is coaching and some is our reputation. We are not a well liked team.
     
  16. Duff Man

    Duff Man Moderator Club Member Junta Member

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    Are we really going down this road? I think this is another thing that drives me nuts about the Hawkins era. The "woe is us" attitude that permeates every aspect of the program sucks. Hawkins is always talking about how we need some breaks or momentum and then everything is going to take off. I just do not understand how everything seems to come down to fate or luck.
     
  17. Unleash Hell

    Unleash Hell Well-Known Member

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    Hawks wins first 4 years

    2, 6, 5, 3=16

    Macs

    2, 4, 1, 7=14

    I'm just being fair. There are still a lot of very similar things. I am not saying Hawk will be another MAC
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2010
  18. Unleash Hell

    Unleash Hell Well-Known Member

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    That has been us for years. We have always had a lot of bad calls. I think it has a lot to do with the 1990 season. It is mostly coaching though, don't misunderstand me like you usually do.
     
  19. Duff Man

    Duff Man Moderator Club Member Junta Member

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    Sorry I bothered.
     
  20. Unleash Hell

    Unleash Hell Well-Known Member

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    no problem
     
  21. Junction

    Junction Moderator Club Member

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    How many wins did we have in the years before each guy took over?
     
  22. BuffsNYC

    BuffsNYC Uptown Club Member

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    I appreciate buffnik's post. Some of it could be true. The Buffs could have a surprising season.

    I've been shocked at how Hawkins has stuck to his guns. He built his team his way, he didn't waiver much and I think that cost us a few games. I'll never forget poor Bernard Jackson trying to be a passing QB. It was clear that Hawkins was no Neuheisal, who went to the Rose Bowl by riding his running QB. But with his players in place, let's see how he does.

    I also agree that there's no excuse for some of the losses. Even so, if the Buffs look strong this season, I've got nothing against brining Hawkins back. I get the feeling a lot of fans take it personally when their team loses. I don't. Losing sucks, but it doesn't make the coaches bad people, it doesn't mean that they don't care, it doesn't make them venal or louche, and it's not a reason to hate them. Sometimes **** doesn't work out . . . it's best just to move on.
     
  23. CUwhit21

    CUwhit21 Club Member Club Member

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    While I understand the point of this post, lets push this discussion until the end of the season. If this team goes out and wins 7+ this year, then the case for Dan Hawkins and many of the arguments in the OP's post may be valid.

    But, in 8 days, we could be 0-1 with our 3rd loss to CSU in 5 seasons.
     
  24. Hugegroove

    Hugegroove Club Member Club Member

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    I've been on that issue since Talkins became the HC. If all of those stupid penalties are part of talkins "working on the little things" or" cinching it up" then so be it. But we havn't seen any positive results yet.
     
  25. DBT

    DBT Club Member Club Member

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    A couple of things. I can't rember which recruiting class it was, but didn't GB, one year, only sign, like, 12 guys. So, Hawkins not only had to deal with the restrictions and a tough year recruiting in '06, but he had that recruiting gap in that year to deal with.

    On the other side, when Mac was struggling, anyone who had a brain could see the progress he was making in recruiting. He was bringing in some big time guys. Last year, Hawks class really suffered and this year there doesn't look like much is going on in recruiting so far. Plus, Mac was recruiting Texas. Hawk never will.
     
  26. Sexton Hardcastle

    Sexton Hardcastle Club Member Club Member

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    :rofl2:
     
  27. MtnBuff

    MtnBuff Not allowed in Barzil 2 Club Member

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    While I hope and wish that it were true that Hawkins was just taking care of a bad situation and good times are right around the corner I have a hard time seeing signs that that is the case.

    I like Dan Hawkins, I think he is a good man who truly wants to win, wants his players to do well, and wants the university to do well. I believe he was a good coach at Boise, that his winning record was not because of who he followed and his assistants, he was the man in charge and that program won a lot of games and continued to win after he left. In short when Mike Bohn called the Hawkins hire a homerun, at the time it was. If we had not hired him he would have been hired by some other major program and at the time they would have been happy with the hire like most of us were.

    Trouble is that it hasn't come to pass. For some reason DH has not adjusted to BCS conference level football coaching. He has failed to motivate, instill an identity, and create a sense of moving in the right direction. The program is floundering like a rudderless boat in bad storm. I felt, and still do that Hawk should have been fired at the end of last year. If somehow I am wrong and he turns out to be the coach we hoped when he was hired and the team becomes a double figure winning team in the years to come I will gladly admit that I was wrong and support him but I don't think that that is going to happen.

    Again I don't think DH is a bad man and I don't even think he is a bad coach. What I know is that he isn't getting it done here and unless things change dramatically he should and will be gone. He may in the future get another shot at coaching a major program and he may learn from this experience and become a very good coach. I just don't have the patience to wait for it to happen here and I don't see any real reason to believe it will.
     
  28. buffsyko

    buffsyko Club Member Club Member

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    Yes, PLEASE!
     
  29. buffsyko

    buffsyko Club Member Club Member

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    Well, don't laugh, MAC and Hawk are both white....
     
  30. Buffnik

    Buffnik Real name isn't Nik Club Member Junta Member

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    Neither one is all that tall, either.
     

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