Thursday, December 1, 2011

Embree, Buffs Must Take Advantage of Narrow Window

Buffs have a unique opportunity to gain ground in the Pac-12, but must act fast to avoid same fate as the previous regime.
By G The Producer (Mile High Sports); 11:04:42am: October 1, 2011

The same landscape is forming... the one similar to the kind that allowed Coach Mac to bring CU to College Football Glory.

Many attribute the Buffs turnaround in the 80-90's to Texas and Oklahoma (and the rest of the Big 8) experiencing down years due to turnover.

The stars are aligning as Coach Embree et al are going to have the chance to take advantage of a "rebuilding" Pac-12 Conference. The difference? The window to capitalize is small. Embree and the Buffs must find a way to win, and win now. Win in the classroom, win in the weightroom, win in recruiting, and win on the field.
Rich-Rod is coming to town. His name and reputation precedes itself. However, you can't question his unique scheme and record won't speak for itself in recruiting. Rodriguez is known for his efficiency with a unique variation of the spread offense. Did he fail at Michigan? Sure... As a head coach. As an offensive coordinator? No. Rodriguez never had a chance at Michigan, he was an unpopular hire form the start, and in the end it was his failings to hire an adequate defensive coordinator and his lack of being a "Michigan Man," that did him in.

It's only a matter of time before Rich-Rod has the guys in place to light up the scoreboard on the West Coast. But for now, their recruiting class is in turmoil, with the prospects they have still committed looking elsewhere. Arizona is left with only one "solid verbal" from a 4-star recruit. His failures at Michigan will have some turnover, but in the end it will give him credibility.

Turn-over Prediction: 2 years
Arizona State
No one yet knows who leads the campaign to pick up the pieces from this season's shipwreck led by Dennis Erickson. But whoever it is, shouldn't have a problem keeping the ship afloat in Tempe. Recruiting pitch? (See picture).

The new head coach in Tempe has undoubtedly just inherited the best available job in the Pac-12. Recruiting will become important, but the coach will be poised to win immediately. How come? The Sun Devils were on the fast track to the Pac-12 Title Game, and an epic rematch with Oregon. But James Cameron could not have depicted a ship sinking like this... (What? No Titanic references? Too Soon? My apologies)

The difference? All 6'8" of QB Brock Osweiler. Is there any question that this kid is destined to play on Sundays? He's only a Sophomore. The new staff will have one, maybe two more years. And a QB alone is worth 4-5 extra wins at the College Level.

Turn-Over Prediction: Win next year, then 2 years of rebuilding.

Have you ever seen a team with such talent, year in and year out, and deliver such mediocre results? It begs the question to how much time Jeff Tedford has left in Berkeley. They currently sit with only 8 verbal commitments as of today.

Whether it's Tedford or a new coach, they are sure to get a new infusion of prestige. Their academic standing speaks for itself, but couple it with a brand new bazillion-dollar facility and reconstruction of their stadium, they will take a giant leap in the arms race.

While Cal isn't in need of rebuilding, they will stay on course as an above average program for a few years, Tedford hasn't shown the ability to do anything different.

Turnover Prediction: 2 years with Tedford, 3-4 with a new coach.
Oregon Ducks
Enough said.

TurnoverDownfall Prediction: Don't hold your breath

Oregon State

The problem for the Beavers is that they are too enamored by competing with their in-state rival Oregon. The truth is, that for now, that's a lost cause.

But it looks like Mike Riley might actually survive this horrible season. Which is good news for the Buffs and the rest of the "Pac." In my opinion this is a place that has a lot to offer, but for whatever reason has not had the success to build the excitement around the program to become a contender. CU Football of the Northwest?

Turnover Prediction: 4 years
Stanford Cardinals

The architect of this turnaround has taken his talents to San Fran (my apologies to Lebron). The next step? A once in a life-time QB Talent will be playing on Sunday's next year. A combination of those two factors, plus a total lack of support for athletics by the local community, Stanford should start looking more like Stanford any time now.

Prediction: Stanford is good at reading and math and stuff. Football, ehh?

More soon...

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