By G The Producer: Buffalo Chips Radio (Mile High Sports)
Going out on a high note, John Embree said it himself: “This win will springboard us next year… This win will do a lot for us,” after a 17-14 victory over the Utah Utes Friday.
King Kong is finally off his back, now it’s time to focus on the future.
With no disrespect to the seniors on this football team, their tenure at The University of Colorado-Boulder has come to an end… finally. It has been an era of mostly downs (not even ups and downs), but the most recurring diagnosis of CU Football’s woes have been their lack of confidence, passion, and most of all leadership.
The Colorado Seniors finished their careers as many of them came in Sunday, August 31st,2008 with a 38-17 victory of Colorado State. Victory.
But it was a 4/5 years span that marked some of the most embarrassing displays of Football since “Powder Blue.”
Congratulations to our Seniors, leaving with tremendous pride, as most of them have just played their final game.
1. Momentum going into off season, oh what a few wins can do.
2. Avoiding CU’s first ever 11-loss season.
3. He won more than Hawkins did his first year… Oh, he got an extra game? Shut up.
4. Responding to adversity.
-If you are truly a Colorado fan, you were watching that game vs. Utah and awaiting another heart-shattering collapse? And why not? If you’re a true fan, who has followed this team like I have, you nothing else to expect.
-Sure we got some breaks, Coleman Petersen comes to mind (the guy had such a bad game he made Aric Goodman laugh).
-The P*$$ification of Football: The Parker Orms pseudo-unnecessary roughness penalty is normally the straw that breaks the camel’s back. But not today, give credit where credit is due.
-There were probably a dozen opportunities for Utah to not only win the game (and keep their Pac-12 Title hopes alive), but the Buffs had tremendous opportunity to bend, bend, bend, and then break. But not today, give credit where credit is due.
1. Replacing 28 Seniors which includes your leading Passer, Rusher, and Receiver. Never an easy task for anyone, let alone Colorado. I am just as hopeful as the rest of Buff Nation that Connor Wood can be the stable force there, however, let’s wait until he takes the practice field for actual College Football Competition (a process in which he struggled enough to get buried on a depth chart that delivered pretty average QB play on a “pillow-fight” offense this year at Texas.
2. This team still lost 10 games, and coming into this game, on the road they were absolutely putrid. Losing by an average of 33 points. There is a lot of bad we would have to forget.
3. Recruiting: No matter how many “know-it-all” message board handles say, “we just need to recruit…” Wait… Stop the presses. We need to recruit? Somebody call Embree, we just figured the whole thing out!
-When the dust settles in late January and coaches are making their final push for their future Heisman trophy winners and championship teams, retrospect will still see a horrible 3-10 team.
-Nick Saban wouldn’t be able to bring in a Top 25 class of game-changers following this.
-Get creative. We need to get lucky some guys sure, but the Buffs are not going to trot in 25 Blue-Chip recruits next fall. We’re going to have to get creative, coach’em up, and find a way to win with the 2nd tier players we’ll be left with.
-We will officially say goodbye to Dan Hawkins this off-season. No, I’m no idiot, I know he was fired over a year ago. But the venom of the "Hawk Talks Juice Box" way of doing things will either graduate, or attrition will take care of them.
-Want to know who’s eating what Embo is cookin’? We’ll know when we learn who stays, and who goes.
Final Word: Once again, no offense to these Seniors, but it’s time to say goodbye. The private feuds amongst the locker room (most of which was kept controlled to the public eye) was cooked up by a different Senior each week; allowing jealousy to overcome leadership.
The key is the lack of leadership amongst the CU Program. Calm down, I’m in no way blaming these young men. Players sign on the dotted line to allow a coach shape and mold who they are to become… Poor leadership is a trickle-down effect right from the top. Player-from leaders-leaders from coaches-coaches from pride and their leadership-leadership from CU Administration-CU Administration from not understanding what we could have here at the University of Colorado.
But there is a Coaching Staff that certainly does understand. They lived it. On the day he was introduced as the Head Coach of the Golden Buffaloes’ Football Team, Jon Embree said his largest task was changing the mentality of this football team. The door closing on the most recent “Made-by-Hawkins” class will be a big step. But now it’s about X’s and O’s, Jimmy’s and Joe’s. And that, and only that, falls on one man.
Following the Washington State disaster at home this fall, the man said it himself… “That starts with Jon Embree… and no one else.”