Pac-12 Notes

 

January 22nd

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ESPN Top 25 returning Pac-12 players includes two Buffs

From ESPN … We gave you the top 25 players of the season in the Pac-12 about a month ago, but today we take a look forward and rank the top 25 players who will return next season.

13. Phillip Lindsay, RB, Colorado: Lindsay’s 1,579 yards from scrimmage ranked No. 2 in the Pac-12 in 2016 and his return is a big reason why the Buffaloes should be improved offensively next year.

20. Shay Fields, WR, Colorado: Fields’ 883 receiving yards last season are the most among returning receivers in the conference.

ESPN Top 25, by school … Washington: 8; USC: 4; Washington State: 3; Colorado: 2; UCLA: 2; Oregon: 2; Utah: 2; Arizona State: 1; Stanford: 1; Oregon State: 0; Cal: 0; Arizona: 0.

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January 21st 

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Arizona State loses offensive coordinator to Auburn

From ESPN … The Auburn Tigers have hired Chip Lindsey as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, head coach Gus Malzahn said Saturday.

Lindsey, who spent last season in the same job at Arizona State, replaces Rhett Lashlee, who left to become UConn’s offensive coordinator.

“I have the utmost confidence in his ability to lead our offense and his strength in developing quarterbacks makes him the perfect fit,” Malzahn said in a statement. “Chip is a man of integrity and character who will fit well within our staff. He has great knowledge and enthusiasm for the game and is a rising star in this profession.”

Auburn ranked 112th nationally in passing offense last season, averaging 169.5 yards per game. Former Baylor starter Jarrett Stidham will compete with returning starter Sean White at quarterback during the spring.

 

Arizona State averaged 33.3 points and 390.8 yards per game last season.

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January 20th

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NCAA votes to give student athletes another 21 days away from athletics each year

From CUBuffs.com … University of Colorado students who play sports will soon see changes to their schedule, giving them, in most cases, at least an additional 21 days away from athletics so they can study, pursue an internship, or get additional rest and recovery.

The changes result from a vote taken today at the annual NCAA Convention in Nashville, Tenn., by a group of fellow student representatives and administrators of the Autonomy Five conferences.  The purpose of these reforms is to enhance the student experience so these individuals can spend more time engaging in non-athletic activities on campus.

“We are here to help students be successful in college and in life,” the five commissioners said in a statement. “In three years, we have taken many steps to further improve the experience of some 36,500 students in our five conferences. These students are great representatives of our schools and our goal is to help them earn their degree while playing the sport they love and, in many instances, graduate debt free thanks to the scholarships we provide.”

The changes, known as “Flex 21” will give these students, in most cases, at least an additional 21 days in which they are free from required athletic activities during the academic year. Flex 21 days are in addition to current rules related to time off.

Recognizing that every sport has different needs, the proposal includes flexibility so coaches, students and athletic directors can develop an appropriate student-athlete time management plan that best suits each sport.  The changes are the result of in-person meetings and survey feedback from students, head coaches, faculty and athletics administrators.

Statement from Commissioner Scott:

On behalf of the Pac-12, our 7,000 student-athletes, coaches and administrators, I am very pleased with today’s actions to improve the experience of our student-athletes. This issue of time balance has been a big focus for us as we have worked with our campus leadership, including administrators, faculty, and coaches, in order to successfully reform the rules governing college athletics. College represents a period of major personal growth and opportunity for our students and as athletic administrators, it is incumbent on us that they have the necessary time and the flexibility to take full advantage of everything our universities have to offer.

… Continue reading story here …

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January 19th

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Washington State head coach Mike Leach – SEC offenses not that unique

From ESPN … If Phil Longo fails to pan out as Ole Miss’ offensive coordinator, Longo’s mentor Mike Leach says it won’t be because the SEC is too tough for the style of offense that he will run.

“I’ve got bad news for all these levels people,” Leach told the Jackson Clarion-Ledger in a story about Longo. “Your level isn’t special, your conference isn’t special. All this different level this, different level that. That’s crazy.

“How is it better? Somebody coaches better athletes, somehow they morph into something smarter, that’s crazy. I mean, you still have problems, you still have 11 parts you can wiggle around to counter the other 11 parts.”

A late-1990s visit with Leach spawned Longo’s up-tempo scheme that produced eye-popping numbers at multiple small schools, most recently FCS-level Sam Houston State. But just because he has not done it at a major conference does not mean Longo’s scheme can’t work somewhere like the SEC, said Leach, now the head coach at Washington State.

… And though he’s nearly 20 years removed from coaching in the SEC, Leach says not much has changed about offensive philosophy within the conference.

“This is a great time to be in the SEC, everybody’s got the same offense: run right, run left, play-action,” Leach told the newspaper. “And they tease themselves and say we threw it four more times a game this year than we did last year.”

 

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January 18th

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NCAA rejects June signing period; December signing period still in play

From ESPN … A proposed June signing period for college football recruits has been rejected by the NCAA’s Division I Council, but a possible December signing period remains very much in play.

The council modified a proposal for flexibility in the recruiting calendar at the NCAA’s annual convention on Wednesday by removing a request for a 72-hour signing period that would have started on the last Wednesday in June. The council acted on the recommendation of the NCAA’s football oversight committee.

At its convention last week, the American Football Coaches Association supported the December signing period but came out against the June date.

The proposed calendar, which still includes a 72-hour December signing period, awaits a vote from the council in April. That December signing period already serves as the time junior-college players can sign with a four-year program.

The proposed December signing period requires approval from the Collegiate Commissioners Association, which administers the national letter of intent.

The traditional national signing day takes place on the first Wednesday of February. That signing period would remain in place under the modified recruiting calendar.

Continue reading story here

 

Oregon suspends strength and conditioning coach over hospitalization of players

From the Oregonian … The University of Oregon athletic department suspended its new football strength and conditioning coach without pay for a month while issuing an apology Tuesday in the wake of the hospitalization of three Ducks football players last week.

New UO football coach Willie Taggart offered his “sincere apologies” on behalf of his coaching staff and the UO athletic department at-large to offensive linemen Doug Brenner and Sam Poutasi, and tight end Cam McCormick. As of Tuesday evening, Poutasi and McCormick remained hospitalized, in good condition, at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at Riverbend in Springfield, according to a hospital spokeswoman. Brenner was released earlier in the day.

No other players have “demonstrated negative effects at this time or have been admitted to the hospital” following a series of intensive workouts last week, a UO spokesman wrote by email.

“As the head football coach, I hold myself responsible for all of our football-related activities and the safety of our students must come first,” Taggart said in a news release. The coach said he has visited the athletes at the hospital.

Continue reading story here

 

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January 17th

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Oregon football players hospitalized after “grueling” workouts

Related … “College Hotline: Pac-12 football analysis as Byrne departs, Klemm canned, Barnes arrives, Salave’a moves and more” (a good read) … from Jon Wilner at the San Jose Mercury News 

From the Oregonian … At least three Oregon Ducks football players were hospitalized after enduring a series of grueling strength and conditioning workouts at UO last week, The Oregonian/OregonLive has learned.

Offensive linemen Doug Brenner and Sam Poutasi and tight end Cam McCormick are in fair condition and remained at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at Riverbend in Springfield on Monday, a hospital spokeswoman said. They have been in the hospital since late last week after workouts that occurred during the team’s return from holiday break.

Poutasi’s mother, Oloka, said that her son complained of very sore arms after the workouts and had been diagnosed with rhabdomyolysis, a syndrome in which soft muscle tissue is broken down with “leakage into the blood stream of muscle contents,” according to the NCAA medical handbook. Depending on the severity, it has the potential to lead to damaged kidneys.

“The safety and welfare of all of our student-athletes is paramount in all that we do,” Oregon wrote in a statement on behalf of the entire athletic department. “While we cannot comment on the health of our individual students, we have implemented modifications as we transition back into full training to prevent further occurrences.

“We thank our medical staff and trainers for their continued monitoring of the students and we will continue to support our young men as they recover.”

Oregon coach Willie Taggart visited Riverbend to meet with some of the hospitalized players before leaving the state to recruit.

Players this week were required to finish the same workouts, which were described by multiple sources as akin to military basic training, with one said to include up to an hour of continuous push-ups and up-downs. An Oregon official disputed a claim that some players had “passed out,” saying the training staff did not see any players faint; another UO official later said that athletic trainers were available to those who needed treatment during the workouts.

Continue reading story here

 

Cal hires Eastern Washington head coach to be new offensive coordinator

Related … “Cal’s new offensive coordinator is Beau Baldwin from Eastern Washington (and that’s a smart move by coach Justin Wilcox)” … from Jon Wilner at the San Jose Mercury News

From CBS Sports … One of the best Football Championship Subdivision programs has now lost its offensive coordinator and coach to higher-level jobs.

Eastern Washington coach Beau Baldwin is leaving the program to take the offensive coordinator position at Cal under new coach Justin Wilcox. The announcement was made Monday afternoon after earlier reports indicated Baldwin was making the leap.

Baldwin leaves behind an impressive resume at Eastern Washington which included, among other things, a national championship run during the 2010-11 season.

The news comes just a couple of weeks after Eagles offensive coordinator Troy Taylor took the same job at Utah. Eastern Washington has been a dominant offense recently. In 2015, the team finished No. 1 in the FCS in passing yards per game (401 ypg), No. 2 in total yards per game (529 ypg) and No. 3 in scoring offense (42.4 ppg).

 

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January 16th 

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UCLA fires offensive line coach (and one of its top recruiters) Adrian Klemm

… So I guess CU is not alone in having assistant coach issues, with UCLA giving up on its ace recruiter three weeks before Signing Day …

From ESPN … UCLA has fired offensive line coach and ace recruiter Adrian Klemm, who was hit with NCAA sanctions for recruiting violations last September. The Bruins recently hired Jedd Fisch away from Michigan as their new offensive coordinator.

Here’s coach Jim Mora’s statement: “Adrian is a friend, which makes change difficult sometimes,” said Mora. “But right now, this is what is in the best interest of the program. I know Adrian will be successful in all his future endeavors. He has played a major role in the lives of the young men he has coached and mentored here in Westwood, many of whom now have careers in the NFL. I want to thank him for that commitment to our student-athletes over the years and his dedication to this program. Most of all, I want to wish him all the best moving forward.”

From the Los Angeles Times … UCLA has parted ways with offensive line coach Adrian Klemm less than three weeks before signing day, a person close to the situation confirmed Sunday on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to disclose the information publicly.

Klemm becomes the second Bruins assistant to depart the program after the dismissal of offensive coordinator Kennedy Polamalu in November. UCLA hired Michigan passing game coordinator Jedd Fisch this month to replace Polamalu.

Klemm, 39, presided over an offensive line that was one of the team’s biggest weaknesses last season, giving up 24 sacks, 10 more than in 2015. The line also struggled to open holes for a running game that finished as the second worst among 128 major college football teams, averaging 84.3 yards rushing per game.

Klemm also had been suspended for two games during the 2015 season after committing recruiting violations that included paying for housing and training sessions for two recruits at a private workout facility. The NCAA imposed a $5,000 fine on UCLA in September along with a two-year show-cause order that will require any school attempting to hire Klemm during that period to appear before the NCAA’s Committee on Infractions to present justification for the move.

Asked in December if there was any unease about Klemm remaining on staff in the wake of his violations, Athletic Director Dan Guerrero told The Times, “Had we felt that there were major issues with Adrian Klemm, that decision would have been made a long time ago.”

Continue reading story here

 

Alabama hires away Arizona athletic director

From CBS Sports … Alabama has hired away one of the most highly regarded athletic directors in the nation with Arizona’s Greg Byrne agreeing to replace Bill Battle in leading the Crimson Tide, the school announced Monday.

Battle decided to retire from his post as Alabama AD immediately, moving into a newly created “special assistant to the president” role, either until his contract ends in March or longer. Greg Hansen of the Arizona Daily Star first reported late Sunday that Byrne would leave Arizona to take the Alabama job and multiple sources confirmed as much to CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd on Monday.

According to SportsBusiness Journal’s Michael Smith, Alabama began interviews for the AD job in December, and Byrne met with Saban on Saturday with administration getting a “thumbs up” from the football coach.

… Byrne, 45, was a candidate for the Florida AD job this past season but spurned the Gators to remain with the Wildcats. He is the son of long-time Texas A&M AD Bill Byrne and has SEC experience after serving as an associate at Kentucky (2002-05) and Mississippi State (2006-08) before being promoted to AD by the Bulldogs (2008-10). One of his first moves was hiring then-Florida offensive coordinator Dan Mullen.

Greg Byrne left for Arizona in 2010 and has done a tremendous job with the athletic department since arriving, increasing its budget from $45 million to $80 million.

He hired Rich Rodriguez to lead Wildcats football and has retained him, fighting off overtures from bigger programs. He also kept basketball coach Sean Miller happy with a hefty contract extension in 2011 after Miller interviewed with Maryland and was considering leaving the Wildcats.

 

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January 15th

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Pac-12 not losing many players early to the NFL draft

From the San Jose Mercury News

Entering the draft

Arizona: None
Arizona State: None
Cal: WR Chad Hansen
Colorado: None
Stanford: RB Christian McCaffrey, DL Solomon Thomas
Oregon: None
Oregon State: None
UCLA: DL Eddie Vanderdoes
USC: OG Damien Mama, WR JuJu Smith-Schuster
Utah: OT Garett Bolles, S Marcus Williams
Washington: S Budda Baker, CB Sidney Jones, DL Elijah Qualls, WR John Ross,
Washington State: None

*** Key players returning to school

Oregon: Royce Freeman
Washington: Vita Vae
Washington State: Luke Falk

 

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January 14th

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Oregon poaches Washington State’s top recruiter

Cougs, we feel your pain ..

From the Spokane Spokesman-Review … Poaching assistant football coach Joe Salave’a from Washington State was a splurge, even by nouveau riche Oregon’s standards.

According to a report by The Oregonian, the Ducks will pay Salave’a $550,000 each year of a three-year deal to get Salave’a on new head coach Willie Taggart’s staff as an associate head coach and defensive line coach. Taggart’s other new assistants are on two-year deals.

At WSU, Salave’a was scheduled to make $400,000 in 2017 after making $345,000 in 2016.

Since hiring Taggart, UO has been stockpiling prominent assistant coaches. New defensive coordinator Jim Leavitt was named FootballScoop.com’s top defensive coordinator for his work turning around the Colorado defense this past season. New offensive line coach Mario Cristobal was regarded as one of the nation’s best recruiters during his time at Alabama.

Salave’a likewise is regarded as an ace recruiter, particularly of players who hail from American Samoa and other Polynesians. He is widely credited with playing an integral role in establishing the familial culture at WSU and his reported departure has been widely felt in the football program and fan base.

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January 13th

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Cal expected to name Wisconsin defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox as new head coach

From the San Jose Mercury News … Cal’s search for a football coach lasted less than a week: The Bears are in contract negotiations with Justin Wilcox, the Wisconsin defensive coordinator and former Cal assistant.

Wilcox and Jake Spavital, the Bears’ offensive coordinator, were the only confirmed finalists. Other head and assistant coaches, including Navy boss Ken Niutamalolo, were linked to the job by various media outlets.

The news was first reported by FoxSports.com’s Bruce Feldman, who broke the story about Cal firing Sonny Dykes last weekend.

Cal had not confirmed the hire Thursday evening but, barring a breakdown in negotiations, was expected to introduce Wilcox at a press conference on campus in the next 48 hours.

There was no immediate word on Wilcox’s coordinators, although sources have indicated Spavital was viewed as an option to run the offense.

Former Cal assistant coach Tosh Lupoi is close to Wilcox and considered a candidate to be the defensive coordinator.

 

Oregon names Alabama assistant coach as new co-offensive coordinator

From FoxSports … After coaching in Monday’s national title game, Alabama assistant head coach Mario Cristobal has informed Oregon that he has accepted an offer to become the Ducks’ co-offensive coordinator and run game coordinator, a source told FOX Sports.

Cristobal will join former South Florida offensive coordinator David Reaves, who will also head to Oregon. Reaves will reunite with his old boss Willie Taggart as the Ducks’ passing game coordinator.

Cristobal has been long regarded as one of the nation’s top recruiters. In 2015, Cristobal’s O-line at Bama proved to be the best in the nation, winning the inaugural Joe Moore Award, which is given to the toughest, most physical line in the nation, and helped paved the way for a national title run. Senior captain Ryan Kelly, a first team All-American, was also honored with the Rimington Trophy as the nation’s top center. That line, along with Kelly, consisted of left tackle Cam Robinson, left guard Ross Pierschbacher, right guard Alphonse Taylor and right tackle Dominick Jackson, and averaged 199.9 rushing yards per game and pass-protected for another 227.1.

 

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January 12th

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Arizona and Colorado State announce home-and-home series

From azcentral.com … The Arizona Wildcats have announced a future home-and-home football series with Colorado State.

The Wildcats will visit the Rams in Fort Collins on Sept. 4, 2027. CSU will come to Tucson on Sept. 2, 2028.

“We are excited to announce this series with Colorado State University,” UA athletic director Greg Byrne said in a news release. “The two schools have a strong history between one another, and renewing this regional matchup will be of great benefit to both programs. We think our fans will enjoy games like this, along with the other strong programs on our future non-conference schedules.”

Arizona and Colorado State have faced each other 17 times dating to 1926. The Wildcats hold a 13-3-1 advantage. The two schools last met in 1994 in Tucson.

Colorado State is a member of the Mountain West Conference and participated in the inaugural Arizona Bowl in December 2015.

Arizona’s known future non-conference opponents:

  • 2017: Northern Arizona, Houston, at UTEP
  • 2018: BYU, at Houston
  • 2019: at Hawaii, Northern Arizona, Texas Tech
  • 2020: Hawaii, Portland State, at Texas Tech
  • 2021: BYU, San Diego State
  • 2022: at San Diego State, Mississippi State
  • 2023: at Mississippi State, UTEP
  • 2024: at Kansas State
  • 2025: at Hawaii, Kansas State
  • 2026: at BYU
  • 2027: at Colorado State, BYU
  • 2028: Colorado State, at Nebraska
  • 2029: Virginia Tech
  • 2030: at Virginia Tech
  • 2031: Nebraska

 

AFCA recommends early signing period in mid-December

From CBS Sports … The once sleepy, sometimes ineffective vocational association of 12,000 members has quickly turned itself around. It seems like we’re going to have to pay attention.

That became obvious Wednesday when, at their annual AFCA meeting, FBS coaches recommended a mid-December early signing period in major-college football.

The proposal would make that December date the first of two signing periods — the other being the traditional early February date.

What was once highly controversial now seems on the way to passage. There are miles to go. The Collegiate Commissioners Association controls the National Letter of Intent, and any legislation will have to be vetted by the CCA. Athletic directors and school presidents have to be convinced.

High school coaches with playoffs in December certainly don’t want the distraction. But at least the game’s most powerful coaches are on record. Previously, it was easier to herd cats than to get a sizable amount of FBS coaches to even attend this event.

“We have not in the past been engaged or coalesced behind an idea,” AFCA executive director Todd Berry said.

Continue reading story here

 

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January 11th

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Stanford starting quarterback out at least six months … Cardinal down to one scholarship quarterback

From the San Jose Mercury News … Stanford quarterback Keller Chryst will have knee surgery and miss at least six months as the result of an injury suffered in the Sun Bowl, according to multiple sources.

Chryst has severe ligament damage; the specifics of the injury, however, have not been disclosed by the school.

The recovery timeline means Chryst, in a best-case scenario, could be on the field in a limited capacity when the Cardinal starts training camp in late July or early August.

His absence takes on greater significance because of another development: Senior Ryan Burns, who replaced Chryst in the Sun Bowl (and started the first seven games of the season) is expected to leave Stanford under the NCAA’s graduate transfer policy.

With Burns gone and Chryst recovering, the Cardinal has one scholarship quarterback for offseason workouts and spring practice: freshman K.J. Costello.

 

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Pacific Pro League to be led by former Broncos Mike Shanahan and Ed McCaffrey

From Yahoo Sports … Mike Shanahan coached college or pro football for 37 seasons, including head stints in Oakland, Washington and Denver, where he won two Super Bowls.

Ed McCaffrey played 13 seasons in the NFL, winning three Super Bowls, before becoming a prominent football father – one son, Christian, is turning pro out of Stanford as another, Dylan, is headed to Michigan.

Donald Yee is in his 29th year as a sports agent, a job where he has represented NFL coaches and players ranging from future Hall of Famer Tom Brady to guys looking to stick with a practice squad.

From three different backgrounds came one unifying realization – there is a gap in the current system both for certain players to reach the NFL as well as how the NFL can identify talent.

Now they are about to do something about it.

The three are spearheading Pacific Pro Football, which is set to begin play in the summer of 2018. This is a new professional league, yet it isn’t looking to compete with the NFL – a la the now-deceased USFL or XFL.

It is instead, a right-sized developmental option for young players. It has the potential to change the route to the NFL for many who neither want, nor find worth, in the current NCAA system. And it will give the NFL, which is often frustrated at the style of play and the secrecy of the college ranks, a place with a preferable set-up for training and identifying potential draft picks.

“The need is there from both the players and the NFL,” Yee told Yahoo Sports. “This is neither the NFL nor the NCAA. It’s a supplement to the other products and we are convinced there is a market for this.”

Continue reading story here (includes the “basics” for the league, including salaries and eligibility requirements) …

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January 9th

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Former Arizona quarterback Anu Solomon to transfer to Baylor for senior season

From ESPN … Arizona quarterback Anu Solomon will be graduate transferring to Baylor, a source close to the situation confirmed to ESPN.com.

The Bears have a deficit at quarterback following Seth Russell’s graduation and Jarrett Stidham’s transfer to Auburn.

Solomon will be eligible immediately and will join freshmen Zach Smith, who started the final four games of the 2016 season, and early enrollee Charlie Brewer in the quarterback competition under new head coach Matt Rhule.

Baylor’s offensive coordinator Matt Lubick dealt with graduate transferring quarterbacks during his final two seasons at Oregon — Vernon Adams Jr. and Dakota Prukop — so the incoming OC should have a good idea of what works and doesn’t work for quarterbacks in that situation.

In his three-year career at Arizona, Solomon threw for 6,922 yards, 49 touchdowns and 16 interceptions. His 2016 season was derailed by a nagging knee injury, and he ultimately announced his intent to transfer in mid-December.

 

Jon Wilner weighs in on Cal’s options 

From the San Jose Mercury News … We’ve got plenty of ground to cover and I promise to absolutely, positively not mention that the Bears could have hired Mike MacIntyre instead of Sonny Dykes, that Dykes felt like a poor fit from the start (stylistically and culturally) and that it was a doomed marriage.

Actually, the last part about it being a doomed marriage? That’s worth a quick thought:

Once it became clear near the end of the 2015 season that the Bears would qualify for a bowl berth, things got tricky.

Cal couldn’t justify firing Dykes but hadn’t seen enough to warrant a long-term commitment. Dykes didn’t have a better option (despite his best efforts) but didn’t have reason to want to stick around indefinitely.

So Cal offered, and he accepted, a new four-year contract that was essentially a two-year extension of his old deal, with a raise.

It was a short-term solution, and both sides won: Dykes had some security, and Cal maintained its flexibility, with limited financial liability if progress stalled.

There was never going to be a long term: Either the Bears would stagnate in 2016-17 and Dykes would get fired midway through the new deal, or he would succeed and jump at the first job offer that came along.

Next season, 2017, was going to be it. The end simply came 11 months early.

Continue reading story here, including Wilner’s thoughts on Chip Kelly and other candidates …

 

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January 8th

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Cal fires head coach Sonny Dykes 

Related … “OK, maybe Cal won’t try to hire Chip Kelly after firing Sonny Dykes, but here’s why it wouldn’t be crazy to go for it” … From the San Jose Mercury News

Related … “Cal fires coach Sonny Dykes, could Chip Kelly become a target?” … From CBS Sports

… Dykes came in at the same time as Mike MacIntyre … Dykes went 19-30; MacIntyre’s record is 20-31 … 

From the San Jose Mercury News … Cal has fired coach Sonny Dykes, a move that comes as a surprise because of the timing — more than one month after the season — but makes sense based on developments below the surface.

The decision was first reported by Fox Sports and has been confirmed by the Mercury News, through a source.

“Something blew this thing up,” the source said. “If you’re going to fire him for what happened on the field, you do it a month ago. This wasn’t about what happened on the field.”

Dykes, who went 19-30 in four season and never beat Stanford or USC, has not-so-secretly interviewed for several coaching vacancies in the past 13 months.

Recently, he was reportedly a candidate for the Baylor vacancy, which angered many influential Cal constituents.

“Either you want to be (at Cal) or you don’t,” the source said.

Continue reading story here

 

From ESPN … Sonny Dykes has been fired as head football coach at Cal, sources have confirmed to ESPN.

The news was first reported by Fox Sports on Sunday.

Offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Jake Spavital will serve as interim coach, sources tell ESPN.

Dykes was 19-30 at Cal and is 41-45 overall as a head coach.

Dykes was under contract through the 2019 season and is owed 70 percent of his remaining base salary and talent fee, which is $5.88 million.

In December, Dykes interviewed for the head-coaching vacancy at Baylor University, but Matt Rhule was hired for that job.

A native of Big Spring, Texas, Dykes is the son of legendary Texas Tech coach Spike Dykes. He played baseball at Texas Tech and worked as a football assistant coach at Kentucky and Northeast Louisiana before joining the Red Raiders’ staff in 2000.

Before coaching at Cal, Dykes was head coach at Louisiana Tech, where he led the Bulldogs to a 22-15 record over his three seasons.

 

USC star wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster becomes second Trojan to declare for NFL draft

From 247 Sports … Star junior wide receiver Juju Smith-Schuster announced Saturday that he would forego his senior season and enter the 2017 NFL Draft, the second underclassmen for USC to do so in as many days.

Smith-Schuster made several references to staying heading into the Rose Bowl presented by Northwestern Mutual. He told reporters he would come back if Adoree’ Jackson returned and he posted on social media he was returning while celebrating the USC women’s national soccer title, which he later said was a joke.

Despite all that it would have been a huge upset for No. 9 to return in 2017. He joins left guard Damien Mama as the the second underclassmen for USC to declare for the NFL.

The junior, known for his physical play and competitiveness, could go in the first round if the right team covets him, but he is expected to be a second day pick at the latest. Yahoo! Sports’ last mock draft has the receiver going to the Buffalo Bills at No. 42 in the second round.

CBSSports.com ranks the 6-foot-2, 220 pound junior as the No. 29 overall prospect for the upcoming draft.

… Smith-Schuster was a five-star recruit out of Poly, the No. 20 overall player and No. 3 ATH prospect (he could player either WR or S) according to the 247Sports Composite.

 

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January 7th

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CBS Speculation … UCLA’s Jim Mora to NFL; Chip Kelly to UCLA

From CBS Sports … Chip Kelly is currently unemployed. After only one season with the San Francisco 49ers, Kelly was fired, and he currently finds himself with a 28-35 record as a head coach over four seasons in the NFL, including a mark of 8-23 over the last two years with the Niners and Philadelphia Eagles.

So it doesn’t really come as a surprise to find out that Chip is open to the idea of returning to the college ranks. When there probably aren’t any NFL teams that will be banging down your door, you have to keep your options open, and believe me, nobody on the college level will care about Kelly’s struggles in the NFL.

Plenty of college coaches have left for the NFL, fallen on their face, and made triumphant returns to college. One of them will be trying to win his sixth national title on Monday night in Tampa.

… These are the five most likely schools I decided upon:

4. Arizona State: Things have been going the wrong way for Todd Graham at Arizona State. In his first three seasons with the Sun Devils, Graham’s teams went 28-12 overall with a 19-8 record in conference play, including a Pac-12 South title. The last two seasons have not been nearly as successful, as the Sun Devils have gone 11-14 overall and 6-12 in the Pac-12.

So a shakeup wouldn’t be the craziest idea in Tempe, and I do think Chip Kelly would have interest in the gig. He’s familiar with the Pac-12, and at least Arizona State is in the South if he doesn’t want to compete directly with Oregon.

Where I see problems emerging is in the financials. Chip Kelly himself won’t come cheap, and Todd Graham’s buyout at this point would be rather prohibitive. According to USA Today, Graham’s buyout is in the $14 million range.

That’s a lot of money to pay a coach to go away just so you can pay another coach more.

2. UCLA: There are a few logical reasons why I have UCLA this high. First of all, it’s a Pac-12 school, and it’s not only in California, but it’s in Los Angeles, which would give Kelly a lot of easy access to high school talent. It’s also reaching a point where you have to wonder how much rope Jim Mora has left to work with.

The Bruins will be making another change at offensive coordinator this season, and maybe those in charge decide that the best way to solve the offense is to hire somebody with the offensive pedigree of Chip Kelly.

Plus, with the number of NFL jobs that are currently open, I wouldn’t be surprised if Mora looked for one of those jobs. Now, this is all purely speculation on my part, but there is an NFL job in the same city as UCLA that’s currently open, and I just can’t help but believe Mora is someone who has plans to return to the NFL at some point.

 

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January 6th

… Foe Pause … 

Minnesota hires Western Michigan coach P.J. Fleck

It’s effect on CU? 1) The Fleck contract is for $3.5 million per year. Mike MacIntyre’s current contract is just over $2 million per year … 2) The Buffs have a home-and-home series with the Golden Gophers in 2021 and 2022. Players Fleck will be recruiting the next few seasons will be on the field against CU down the road … 3) Will CU cornerbacks coach Joe Tumpkin, who was the defensive coordinator at Central Michigan, become a candidate for the Western Michigan job?

From the Twin Cities Pioneer Press … P.J. Fleck, who took Western Michigan from a one-win season in 2013 to a one-loss year in 2016, became head football coach at the University of Minnesota on Friday morning.

University of Minnesota Athletics Director Mark Coyle fired Tracy Claeys on Tuesday and moved quickly to put in place a five-year deal with Fleck. A source said Fleck will earn about $3.5 million per year.

“P.J. is a proven winner and a strong leader. He’s built a unique, positive culture that gets the best out of his students on the field and in the classroom,” Coyle said in a statement Friday. “His infectious energy and passion make him a terrific coach and dynamic recruiter. I am excited he will be leading the Gophers for years to come.”

Fleck added, “It’s an honor to coach at Minnesota and be a part of the Big Ten Conference. I want to thank (University) President Eric Kaler and athletic director Mark Coyle and the Board of Regents for this opportunity. I also want to thank Western Michigan, my players and the great fans and city of Kalamazoo for a wonderful four years.

Continue reading story here

 

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January 4th

… Foe Pause … 

Big 12 and Pac-12 discussed scheduling alliance last summer

From CBS Sports … During the height of its expansion evaluation last summer, the Big 12 spoke with the Pac-12 about a scheduling alliance, CBS Sports has learned.

The discussions focused on a scheduling agreement between the two conferences to bolster each league’s non-conference schedules in the College Football Playoff era, according to multiple sources.

Any talk of a Pac-12-Big 12 merger during that time “is not accurate,” according to Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby.

“We talked over probably three years about things we might work together on [with the Pac-12],” Bowlsby added. “I had the same conversation about the SEC and the ACC. We’re always looking for those kinds of things. There’s probably a dozen topics about whether aggregation might make some sense.”

Continue reading story here

 

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January 3rd

… Foe Pause … 

Former Oregon Coach Chip Kelly will not rule out a return to college football

From Fox Sports … Chip Kelly was wildly successful as a college head coach and helped spark all sorts of innovation on and off the field. On Tuesday, about 36 hours after being fired as the 49ers head coach, Kelly told FOX Sports he’s open to coming back to the college game.

“I evaluate all jobs individually,” he said. “I wouldn’t rule anything out.”

The 53-year-old Kelly was 46-7 in four seasons as Oregon’s head coach with three of teams finishing in the top four. He went 26-21 in three seasons with the Eagles before being let go a year ago and then took over a dreadful 49ers team with a depleted roster and went 2-14 before the organization cleaned house. The timing of Kelly’s dismissals clouded his coaching prospects because of when college head coaching jobs came open.

“I’ve never said I’m only looking at one thing,” Kelly said. “I will never leave my team when there are games left in the season, so I never looked at college because all those jobs are filled while NFL season is still going on.

“I only talked to NFL teams after our bowl game was over when I was at Oregon. It’s pretty simple for me: You can never leave your players during the season. How can you ask players to be all in and then leave when you get a better deal?”

Sources have told FOX Sports there are a couple of schools contemplating making coaching changes this month if they could land Kelly.

 

Washington Huskies will lose four stars to early entry in the NFL Draft

Confirmed … “Budda Baker, John Ross, Sidney Jones, Elijah Qualls enter NFL draft” … from ESPN

From the Seattle Times … Evaluations from the NFL’s College Advisory Committee have been waiting to be opened.

Now that the Huskies’ season is over, a handful of Washington underclassmen will finally take a peek at their pro projections and then take a long, hard look at declaring for the NFL draft.

Budda Baker, Sidney Jones, Elijah Qualls, John Ross III and Vita Vea are expected to strongly consider leaving UW early, a team source told The Seattle Times.

.. Ross, the Huskies’ All-American junior receiver, said he plans to discuss his options with his family and with UW coach Chris Petersen.

“I still haven’t even talked to Coach Pete,” Ross said in the locker room after the Huskies’ season-ending loss to No. 1 Alabama on Saturday night. “I was just so focused on this game. I didn’t plan on losing, but we’ve got time. If it seems to be the right thing to do, then we’ll do it.”

… Jones and Baker, both juniors, are three-year starters in UW’s secondary, and both are projected high-round picks, too.

The versatile Vea is a wild card. The 6-foot-5, 332-pound defensive lineman is a third-year sophomore, which makes him draft-eligible. UW coaches have long lauded Vea’s rare combination of size and speed.

 

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January 2nd

… Foe Pause … 

USC wins epic Rose Bowl, taking out Penn State, 52-49, with last second field goal

… Pac-12 finishes with a 3-3 record in bowl games …

From ESPN … Matt Boermeester kicked a 46-yard field goal as time expired, and No. 9 Southern California rallied from a 14-point deficit in the fourth quarter for a spectacular 52-49 victory over No. 5 Penn State on Monday night in the highest-scoring Rose Bowl ever played.

Freshman Sam Darnold passed for 453 yards and five touchdowns while leading a jaw-dropping comeback for the Trojans (10-3), who won their ninth consecutive game.

Deontay Burnett caught a tying 27-yard TD pass from Darnold with 1:20 to play, capping an 80-yard drive in 38 seconds with no timeouts available.

Leon McQuay III then intercepted a long pass by Penn State’s Trace McSorley and returned it 32 yards to the Penn State 33 with 27 seconds left to set up Boermeester, who missed two earlier field goals. The junior confidently drilled the Rose Bowl winner, sprinting away to celebrate amid pandemonium in the packed stadium.

Trace McSorley passed for 254 yards and threw two of his four touchdown passes to Chris Godwin for the Nittany Lions (11-3), whose nine-game winning streak ended in heartbreaking fashion.

Saquon Barkley rushed for 194 yards and two TDs for the Nittany Lions (12-2), who followed up their 21-point comeback in the Big Ten title game with another ferocious rally.

But Darnold and the Trojans had something extra in one of the most entertaining evenings in the 103-game history of the Granddaddy of Them All.

 

Utah hires its new offensive coordinator – Taylor promises an “attacking style of offense”

From the Salt Lake Tribune … Utah has moved quickly to fill its offensive coordinator job in the new year, hiring Eastern Washington’s Troy Taylor.

Taylor comes after one year at the FCS program, and will also coach quarterbacks in addition to calling plays. Offensive line coach Jim Harding won’t be one of Utah’s co-coordinators next year — a position he served the last two years along with Aaron Roderick — but has added “assistant head coach” among his job titles.

Taylor brings a reputation for mentoring quarterbacks: He was the high school coach of Washington’s Jake Browning, and was the play caller and position coach for Gage Gubrud, who set an FCS record with 5,160 yards passing last year.

Eastern Washington was No. 1 in passing yards (401 ypg), No. 2 in total yards (529 ypg) and No. 3 in scoring offense (42.4 ppg) in the FCS. EWU went 12-2 this past season.

“I have watched Troy Taylor closely over the years when he was coaching innovative high school offenses in California and was eager to see how that translated to college coaching,” Coach Kyle Whittingham said in a statement. “He achieved the same results at Eastern Washington and we are fortunate that Troy was interested in bringing that style of offense here to Utah.”

Taylor served as an assistant at Cal and Colorado (a graduate assistant coaching wide receivers in 1995) founding The Passing Academy and developing his passing offense at Folsom High in California. Sam Whittingham, the son of tight ends coach Fred Whittingham, played for Taylor at Folsom.

From the Press Release … “I am thrilled to be a part of the University of Utah football program,” said Taylor. “I have admired Coach Whittingham and his program for a long time. The opportunity to come on board and help win a Pac-12 championship is a dream come true.

“We will have an attacking style of offense that stretches the field and the defense in every way,” Taylor continued. “Creating success for the quarterback will be our utmost priority. If your QB plays well, you have a great chance of winning. Therefore, the development of his fundamentals and skill set are vital. However, it is just as imperative to have an offensive system that is both dynamic and user friendly. That has been the driving force in my offensive philosophy and I am excited to bring this to the University of Utah.”

 

—–

January 1st

… Foe Pause …

Bowl Payouts for Power Five conferences

From Forbes … When Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Washington took the field for the College Football Playoff semifinals they were already be winners financially. Each team earns $6 million for its conference simply by virtue of playing in the games. And it doesn’t matter who wins – at least financially; there is no additional compensation for competing in the title game on January 9.

It’s important to note that any revenue earned by a team for a berth in a bowl game goes directly to the conference and is then distributed according to each conference’s own rules. After covering a specified amount of travel expenses, most conferences divide all bowl revenue equally between full members (with an equal share calculated in for the conference office), with the SEC being the notable exception, as noted below.

Here’s a conference-by-conference breakdown for the payouts this year from the bowls associated with the College Football Playoff:

ACC (14 teams) – $88.5 million

Big 12 (ten teams) – $95 million

Big Ten (14 teams) – $132.5 million

Pac-12

$55 million base payout (which includes $300,000 for each team which meets the NCAA’s APR for participation in a post-season football game)

$6 million for Washington’s berth in the Peach Bowl

$40 million for USC’s berth in the Rose Bowl (pursuant to a contract between the Pac-12 and the Rose Bowl)

Total (12 teams): $101 million

SEC (14 teams) – $101 million

Group of Five (62 teams) – $83.5 million

 

—–

December 31st

… Foe Pause …

Oregon hires away Charles Clark

From Duck Territory …. Sources confirm Oregon has made another hire. This time on the defensive side of the ball.

Multiple sources confirm Charles Clark has accepted a position at Oregon. Clark was an assistant coach/cornerbacks coach at Colorado for the last four seasons. He has coached corners for the last two seasons according to his bio on the CUBuffs.com website.

It’s important to note, Clark will coach corners specifically for Jim Leavitt and Willie Taggart.

From our sources, the deal is in place for Clark to join the Oregon staff this week.

Charles Clark bio, from CUBuffs.com … Charles Clark is in his fourth year at the University of Colorado, his second coaching the cornerbacks, as he joined Coach Mike MacIntyre’s staff on January 1, 2013. He coached the safeties in his first two seasons, and now also coaches the nickel backs with Joe Tumpkin.

In his first two years at Colorado, he’s coached mostly underclassmen but has led through the Pac-12 waters; freshman and sophomores combined to play 2,110 snaps out of a possible 3,538 at the two safety positions. By his third year, he was overseeing a much more veteran group, with the corners intercepting five passes (compared to zero the previous year) and deflecting 34 passes. Overall, the Buffs rose to second in the Pac-12 in passing defense, allowing just 218.2 yards per game (59th in the nation).

Clark, 32, came to CU from San Jose State, where he coached the defensive backs under MacIntyre for three seasons there after following him to San Jose from Duke. Two of his top players for the Spartans included three-time first-team All-Western Athletic Conference performer, Duke Ihenacho, who signed as a free agent with the Denver Broncos and made their roster, and Peyton Thompson, who was a free agent with the Atlanta Falcons.

 

Utah fires offensive coordinator … running backs coach Dennis Erickson retires

From the Salt Lake Tribune … Utah football’s inability to finish in the red zone this season has led to yet another offensive staff shake-up: Offensive co-coordinator Aaron Roderick has been fired, the athletics department announced Friday, and running backs coach Dennis Erickson will retire.

The move sends Utah’s longest-tenured assistant, Roderick, packing after two stints as offensive coordinator. Roderick has been with the program for more than a decade, serving as the quarterbacks coach, the receivers coach and the passing game coordinator since joining the program in 2005.

Twice, Roderick accepted other jobs elsewhere — at BYU and Washington — but then opted to stay at Utah.

As the play-caller in the booth the past two years, Roderick took the heat when Utah (9-4) struggled to convert near the end zone. The team was No. 106 in FBS red zone offense, converting points on 77.8 percent of red zone possessions. The Utes also had the No. 8 scoring offense (29.8 ppg) in the Pac-12, and the No. 9 passing offense (216.7 ypg). Whittingham cited the red zone struggles as the biggest reason for a 1-3 ending to the season.

Also a prominent influence in Utah’s offense, Erickson ends a four-year run in which he started as an offensive coordinator in 2013 but was demoted to running backs coach after one year. In an interview with The Tribune on Friday, Erickson said he had been considering retirement for the past year.

It may be Erickson’s last college stop in a career that includes head coaching tenures at Miami (where he won two national championships), Oregon State and Arizona State.

Continue reading story here

 

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31 Replies to “Pac-12 Notes”

  1. Geez I hate to sound butt hurt about Leavitt but it sounds like Oregon is spraying around money like an insulation contractor.

    1. Everyone caught up the Ducks on facilities, so they had to try and find a way to spend Uncle Phil’s money on something else.
      Now Oregon is creating an assistant coach arms race, paying inflated prices to try and get ahead on coaching and recruiting. It’s no mean feat to steal away one of Alabama’s top recruiters, but the Ducks did it anyway.

      More rea$on$ to hate the Duck$$

  2. Yo Stuart,

    Methinks Willie Taggart at Oregon is doing the best he can to build the best coaching staff he can. It’s not poaching. If CU and WSU want to compete, they need to pay the going rate.

    I fear that many here in Boulder are already setting up their expectations for disappointment. Even though Mike MacIntyre has already said that he felt that 2017 would be the Buffs breakthrough year, many are already making excuses for why they believe Colorado will be fortunate to go 7-5 next year. Why? Because our senior class is graduating?

    Good golly. I hope we can do better than that. The last four years, the Buffs have won 20 games total. They lost 31. In the Pac-12, the Buffs have won only 10 the last four years, and lost 26. That means the Buffs were 10-5 in non-conference games and 10-26 in Pac-12 play.

    The Rise has been built on a culture of change and improvement, not on a dominant senior class. I will be sorely disappointed if the Buffs are not better in 2017 than they were in 2016. It doesn’t mean they will win 10 games, for sure, but it means they will not be so sorely manhandled against the better teams like they were this year.

    The Buffs will either continue the rise, or they will fall back to the reality that was the last 10 years. If it’s the latter, we can look to the preemptive excuses that have been bandied about this off-season.

    What Colorado CAN do is get around to hiring a defensive coordinator and the other open positions. The current players and the incoming recruits deserve the stability that the hire would offer.

    It’s been a week since Colorado indicated a hire was imminent. Could it be that their imminent candidate bolted? I’m worried that the delay is indicative of staff strife or lack of direction from Mac. I hope it gets fixed. Soon.

    Mark
    Boulderdevil

    1. If CU and WSU want to compete, they need to pay the going rate … This just in – CU and Washington State have to try and compete without paying the going rate. This year, Oregon paid $3.6 million to assistants; CU and Washington State just over $2.6 million … and that was before the Ducks opened up the checkbook this month.

      CU just upped the ante to Mike MacIntyre by over $1 million per season, and will spend more on assistant coaches this off-season. Jim Leavitt was CU’s highest paid assistant coach this past season, and offered him a raise of over 50% … and it wasn’t enough.

      … and just because a coach CU was interested in opted to take a bigger check elsewhere doesn’t mean that there is “strife or a lack of direction from Mac”. That’s a huge leap.

      Go back and watch some of the locker room tape from “The Rise”. Find me a staff filled with strife or lack of direction …

      1. Good points all. There are few coaches singularly loyal to a program (see potentially a Chiavarini), and they are always auditioning for a promotion or a termination. That’s the nature of the beast, whether it’s college sports or the business world (is there any difference?).

        Can’t blame a wealthy program like Oregon for buying talent. Just need to make sure Nike is nowhere in our home.

        Screw OU

        1. Yo WarBuff,

          It’s a good point you make. Why are Colorado and other Pac-12 programs continuing to do business with Nike when their CEO is giving Oregon so much money? In effect, the Buffs and other teams are actually helping to fund the Duck program. All life is a competition, and the Buffs should not be in financial arrangements with a company that is openly supporting a rival school.

          Mark
          Boulderdevil

          1. Actually, Oregon’s athletic department is swamped with debt so CU is hardly “funding” their athletic department when Nike sends a big check to CU. Be glad Rick George has the business acumen to keep CU’s financial footing on solid ground and didn’t open the wallet to keep guys whose only loyalty is the dollar. In the long run, a much greater loss would have been Rick George going to Illinois as AD. Here is the link (and a good read overall) for athletic department debt. Note what a disaster Cal and Washington are in…
            https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2017-01-04/college-football-s-top-teams-are-built-on-crippling-debt

          2. I like the whole thought process behind this. Back on the east coast, UA is investing TONS of money into very cutting edge technologies in apparel and big data. While in the middle of growing their business model to become more than just an apparel company, I think of a partnership that would only make sense in Boulder. The slight difference is that UA is not only building out for the athlete, but also your average Joe. There are some incredible things UA is doing, it would be nice to have a partnership with them given the amount of research that goes on in Boulder and the state of Colorado around Athletics and human health.

            Then dump Nike after the contract is over.

      2. Stuart,

        In 2012, Oregon was paying their head football coach $2.8 Million. Taggart will make $3.2 Million next year. That represents a 14% increase.

        In 2012, Colorado was paying Jon Embree $750 Thousand. Next season, they will pay Mac roughly the same as OU pays Taggart ($3.2 Million). That represents a 427% increase.

        Granted, the amount paid to Embree was a national disgrace, but it still shows that Colorado has upped its commitment to coaching compensation for their head football coach. It’s time to up that commitment to the assistant coaching staff as well.

        And maybe up their commitment to better legal counsel as well, so that coaches’ contracts represent the best interests of CU and Colorado taxpayers as well as the coaches themselves. Pay well but make sure that coaches fulfill their contracts instead of jumping at every increase thrown their way.

        As for The Rise, it fun to watch but still a commercial by and for the University of Colorado, so of course it paints nothing but a rosy picture. Ads for Wells Fargo do the same thing. It does not represent reality.

        Mark
        Boulderdevil

  3. Funny. The Coaches association. Lower level execs in the CFB Hierarchy. No power period. They could strike I guess. Nah they ain’t making $10 bucks an hour with no overtime on the weekend.

    Regardless.

    Like the 10th coach. Some schools could use even more
    The December signing date? Yup it’s about the student athlete right? Let em sign and enjoy the holidays. Sheesh.

  4. Well on that coaches show, that Baylor deek certainly wouldn’t shut up. Playing Mac2 hard to show those Texas commits to CU that they should flip to Baylor. He offered em all and one has already decommitted from CU

    Gonna be interesting and sad, if he pulls it off.

    Go Buffs

    1. That’s funny VK. I was interested in watching the different personalities in that room. Rhule and the dude from BC were pretty extroverted type guys – at least in that room, and probably everywhere. Mac seemed more quiet and thoughtful. Handing people their pizza and napkins and stuff. Mostly listening, and chiming in occasionally. Kalani was one of the quieter guys, too.

      Those were my primary observations, as I clicked back and forth. They all seemed to know their stuff. Mac was funny. He said “whoever gets the ball to # 9 for Bama or #4 and 7 for Clemson, more, will win.” Guess he got lucky on that call…

      I recorded it, but haven’t gone back to check it out more thoroughly. Not sure I will. But, it was interesting to see the dynamics in the room, etc.

      Go Buffs.

    2. You really think a 17 or 18 year old is gonna sit around watching a bunch of old coaches babble about a football game? Let alone base the biggest decision of their young lives on it? BTW anyone going to Baylor gets what they deserve. That place is crazy town.

  5. Also, 18m ago, Kyle Bonagura of ESPN posted the following:
    “Colorado coach Mike MacIntyre has signed a contract extension through 2021, the school announced. The deal is worth $16.25 million, starting with a salary of $3.1 million in 2017.”

  6. Stuart, interesting note on the Anu Soloman article…Matt Lubick, the OC at Baylor, is the son of CSU legendary HC Sonny Lubick. At least according to the google machine.

  7. Nothing is going to happen soon anyway. MM is going to be part of the announcing team for the NC game. We can probably kiss Tumpkin goodbye and wish him well at his new position

  8. with the apparent personality conflict between Leavitt and MM I hope MM is looking for competence in the next DC first and pleasing him second. It seems one could put up with a ton of annoyance to benefit from the super job Leavitt did. It may have saved MM’s job.

  9. I know it is a process and everything, but I cannot help but feel disappointed that Oregon has hired away another of our good coaches, and Utah has filled their OC position…but Colorado has seemingly not even interviewed anyone for DC. Are they just waiting to announce Tumpkin? Are they really so good at being secretive that they have already set up interviews and nobody knows about them? Can somebody talk me down off of the ledge with some rumors and gossip, at least?

    1. You know RG is putting in his “2 cents worth” in and maybe there is some disagreement between him and MM. I am more worried about keeping Lindgren on as OC

      1. Hey EP,

        If we don’t have Lingren calling for Sefo to run on EVERY stinkin 3rd and short yardage, how will our offense function???? I mean absolutely no one could guess the call when it was 3rd and less than five yards to go.

        1. you dont see enough of the ol Green Bay play. When it was 3rd and short and the opponent jammed the box. Starr would throw it over their heads deep for TD. The money at stake these days has coaches all cringing with conservative play.

        2. “I want coordinators who put players first and scheme second,” Joseph said Thursday. “If it’s not for our players, let’s not do it.”

          Take a memo

  10. Erickson was also HC at Idaho then went to Wyo. for one year but quickly left for Wash. St. for 2 yrs. then went to Miami where the “U” became known as the gangsta school as Dennis besides not being a very loyal employee at the various schools prior to his tenure with the Canes allowed the players to do anything they wanted as long as they got our of jail before the kickoff.

    Maybe the guy has changed and mellowed some as most people do with maturity, but in many people’s eyes and minds he isn’t thought of having being a real upstanding character type guy.

      1. Yeah OU under Barry had a bad spell with some pretty questionable characters, I remember the deal with the automatic weapon etc. But the Miami team under Dennis E made the SI cover getting off the plane dressed in camo duds and the story was pretty devastating as it was accurate about a program totally out of control, with a win at all cost mentality.

        Also our own Rick Rielly (CU Grad) didn’t do CU any favors at one time with a critical story in SI regarding the Buffs, regarding our favorite scandal that wasn’t a scandal, but manufactured by a no-nothing head line grabbing DA and the usual compliant media that has always hated CU. When you think about it this year is finally the redemption year after all those years for that phony story.

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