Coaching Carousel


January 14th

Arizona hires Kevin Sumlin as its new head coach 

Arizona press release …  The University of Arizona has selected three-time national Coach of the Year finalist Kevin Sumlin to lead its football program, Director of Athletics Dave Heeke announced on Sunday. Sumlin comes to Arizona after serving as the head football coach at Texas A&M University for the past six seasons, compiling a 51-26 record including three bowl victories. He also served as the head coach at the University of Houston for four seasons, amassing a 35-17 record. In his 10 seasons as a head coach, Sumlin has amassed an 86-43 record and his teams have played in bowl games in nine of those seasons.

The terms of Sumlin’s contract, which are subject to approval by the Arizona Board of Regents, will be available at the Tuesday introductory press conference.

“This is a tremendous day for Arizona Football and I am thrilled to welcome Kevin to our family,” said Heeke. “He is a proven winner who will have an immediate impact on not only our football program, but also on our department and University. An accomplished coach and an excellent recruiter, Kevin shares our vision and values and fits with who we are and who we want to be. His commitment to academics and to community service are a testament to his character. I have no doubt that Kevin will bring an exciting brand of football to Tucson and that championships will follow.”

From CBS Sports … Kevin Sumlin was not out of work for long. Just over six weeks after Sumlin was canned by Texas A&M, he is set to become Arizona’s next coach. senior analyst Gil Brandt first shared that Sumlin was headed to Arizona, a report soon confirmed by Sports Illustrated’s Bruce Feldman.

Navy confirmed that its coach Ken Niumatalolo was returning to the Midshipmen to start his 11th season earlier Sunday. Niumatalolo was reportedly considered a strong candidate to replace Rich Rodriguez, who was fired this month amid allegations of misconduct. Rodriguez was 43-35 in six seasons with the Wildcats and had a budding star quarterback in Khalil Tate.

After going 35-17 at Houston over four seasons, Sumlin was hired by Texas A&M in 2012, the Aggies’ inaugural year in the SEC. He went 11-2 during that season coaching Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Johnny Manziel.\

However, Sumlin never matched that success again at TAMU, losing five games in each of his last four seasons in College Station, Texas, and never finishing better than fourth in the SEC West since that first campaign. Sumlin’s Aggies were particularly known for slides late in the season, going just 4-11 against conference opponents faced in November from 2013-17.

Interestingly enough, Arizona travels to Houston in Week 2 of the 2018 season, marking Sumlin’s first return to Houston as a coach since taking the Texas A&M job. Sumlin’s name was also floated in connection to the opening at Arizona State before the Sun Devils eventually hired former NFL coach and ESPN commentator Herm Edwards.

Ken Niumatalolo says “No” to Arizona

From the Arizona Republic … Ken Niumatalolo, who had become the top candidate for the Arizona job, will remain at Navy, the Arizona Daily Star has confirmed.

It was not immediately clear what caused Niumatalolo to withdraw his name from consideration. Arizona had offered him the job last week.

Bruce Feldman of Sports Illustrated and Fox Sports first reported the news.

Niumatalolo released a statement to the Capital Gazette of Annapolis, Maryland.

“After much prayer and pondering, it has become crystal clear that USNA is a special place with special people, and I love it here. Plus, I have unfinished business!”

Arizona now must turn its attention elsewhere in a coaching search that’s approaching two weeks after the Jan. 2 firing of Rich Rodriguez.

Niumatalolo had been recommended by former Arizona coach Dick Tomey, who recruited Niumatalolo at Hawaii and became a mentor of his.

This isn’t the first time Niumatalolo has been deep into discussions with another school and didn’t take the job. A similar scenario unfolded in December 2015 with BYU.

Possible reasons the deal with Arizona fell apart include Niumatalolo’s desire to remain at Navy, where he has been on staff for 20 years; and differences of opinion about Niumatalolo’s offensive philosophy. The Midshipmen run a version of the triple-option, which is standard at service academies but rare at Power Five programs.

Continue reading story here

January 13th

Niumatalolo to Arizona: What’s the Holdup?

Decision expected no later than Monday

From the Arizona Daily Star … Navy’s Ken Niumatalolo is weighing whether to become the next coach of the Arizona Wildcats.

Niumatalolo met with his staff in Annapolis, Maryland, on Saturday morning with an offer from the UA in hand. The assistants emerged from that meeting uncertain whether Niumatalolo would go or stay — perhaps because he wasn’t sure himself.

Niumatalolo, 52, met with Navy athletic director Chet Gladchuk later in the day.

Gladchuk told the Capital Gazette of Annapolis that Niumatalolo was “thinking it through on all fronts. We will have a clearer picture over the next 24 hours.”

It’s possible that the decision could linger into Monday. A devout Mormon, Niumatalolo does not work on Sundays. Additionally, Navy and Army have a basketball doubleheader Sunday, and Niumatalolo might not want to upstage it. He also could wait until Sunday evening, when the basketball games are over, to make an announcement.

Whether the UA is willing to wait until Monday remains to be seen. If the two sides aren’t able to reach an agreement, Arizona would have to move on to other options with national signing day (Feb. 7) looming. The UA signed 16 players in December but would like to add to its class.

Navy is hosting recruits this weekend. Niumatalolo might be delaying an announcement to avoid interfering with a key recruiting period for the Midshipmen, who reportedly would promote offensive coordinator Ivin Jasper if Niumatalolo were to leave.

It’s unclear what exactly is giving Niumatalolo pause, although it could be his feelings for the United States Naval Academy. He has been on the staff there for 20 years, the past 10 as head coach. He has compiled an 84-48 record with nine bowl appearances.

Niumatalolo interviewed with BYU in December 2015 but did not take the job. Conflicts over staffing reportedly factored into his decision.

Reservations on Arizona’s end about Niumatalolo’s offensive scheme — the triple-option — also could be delaying the process.

Continue reading story here


January 12th

Report: Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo offered head coaching position at Arizona

Related … “How Rich Rodriguez’s firing unraveled at Arizona, who will fill the vacancy at head coach” … from

From the Arizona Republic … Ken Niumatalolo was unexpectedly absent from the Navy football offices today, fueling strong speculation that he will be the next coach of the Arizona Wildcats.

Niumatalolo, a disciple of former UA coach Dick Tomey, is believed to be one of the finalists and possibly the favorite. Football Scoop reported that Niumatalolo is in the midst of negotiations with Arizona.

A source close to the situation told the Star that Niumatalolo has been offered the job.

A native of Hawaii, Niumatalolo has been the head coach at Navy for the past 10 years. The Midshipmen have gone 84-47 during that span, qualifying for a bowl game in all but one season.

Niumatalolo, 52, played quarterback at Hawaii and coached for three seasons at UNLV before becoming an assistant at Navy. He has been linked to precious few jobs during his time at Navy; two years ago, he interviewed for a BYU opening that went to Kalani Sitake.

Like the other service academies, Navy runs the option. One of the big questions if Niumatalolo gets the UA job is whether he would bring that system with him or tweak it to suit the talents of Arizona’s players, including star quarterback Khalil Tate.

One other coach believed to have made a strong impression on UA athletic director Dave Heeke is Jedd Fisch, who spent last season as the offensive coordinator at UCLA. Fisch isn’t expected to be retained by new Bruins coach Chip Kelly. The 41-year-old Fisch has extensive NFL experience and runs more of a pro-style scheme. Before UCLA, Fisch was the passing-game coordinator under Jim Harbaugh at Michigan.

The Star has learned that UA interim coach/defensive coordinator Marcel Yates interviewed for the head-coaching job. However, there are no indications that Yates – who’s immensely popular among the current players – is seriously in the running.


January 4th

Arizona and Les Miles have “mutual interest” 

From … The Arizona Wildcats have been in contact with ex-LSU Tigers head coach Les Miles, who is interested in replacing the recently-fired Rich Rodriguez, according to Neal McCready of

Miles, 64, sat out the 2017 season after coaching at LSU from 2005-2016, but McCready reports Miles “wants to get back on the field.”

Miles posted a 114-34 record in 12 seasons at LSU and won two SEC titles (2007, 2011) and a national championship (2007) with the Tigers.

Before that, Miles coached at Oklahoma State where he compiled a 28-21 record in four seasons.

Miles won eight or more games in every season at LSU, besides the 2016 season when he was fired after LSU started 2-2. Miles was let go by LSU because of offensive struggles and “his refusal to adapt.”

Still, it is not everyday Arizona has a chance to land a coach who has won on the biggest stages of college football, so it’s easy to see how Miles could be one of UA’s top candidates.

Another report Tuesday night suggested Arizona would consider hiring ex-Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin to replace Rodriguez. The details from that report can be found here.

Continue reading story here

Arizona coaching search “Hot Board” 

From Wildcat Authority … “Who are Arizona’s top coaching candidates? Read on to see the latest as Arizona looks for its next head coach

Could Mark Helfrich be reunited with Chip Kelly … at UCLA?

From … According to a report by FootballScoop, UCLA head coach Chip Kelly has offered Mark Helfrich the offensive coordinator position for the Bruins.

In what would be a reunion, Helfrich served as offensive coordinator for Chip Kelly in Eugene, leading the Ducks to four straight BCS bowls. The potential hiring of Mark Helfrich at UCLA has been speculated since Chip Kelly accepted the UCLA job in late November.

Together at Oregon from 2009-2012, Kelly and Helfrich had a record of 44-5. With potential sanctions looming around the Oregon program, Kelly left for a job with the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFL. Helfrich was named Kelly’s successor in Eugene and was the head coach until 2016, where Helfrich was fired after a 4-8 season.

Oregon is still paying Mark Helfrich’s buyout for another two years.The Ducks owe the remaining two years, 3.5 million for 2018 and 3.85 million for 2018, adding up to a total of $7.35 million. The Ducks could be able to get out of the buyout if another FBS, FCS, or NFL team were to pay Helfrich a salary greater or equal to what Oregon still owes. If Helfrich’s new salary is less than what Oregon owes, the buyout is pro-rated to match what he would have made at Oregon.

Mark Helfrich is currently obligated to make a good faith effort to find new employment to continue receiving his buyout. By taking an interview with UCLA, this satisfies the requirement to search for a new job for this year.


January 3rd

Possible candidates to replace Rich Rodriguez 

From the Arizona Republic … In the wake of the Arizona Wildcats firing football coach Rich Rodriguez, speculation is already turning towards who the next head coach will be.

It’s unusual in college football for a program to be seeking to hire a head coach in the month of January.

So it remains to be seen whether the Wildcats attempt to lure a sitting head coach or hire someone in need of a job.

With that in mind, here are some potential candidates to take over in Tucson.

— Les Miles, former LSU head coach

— Kevin Sumlin, former Texas A&M head coach

— Mark Helfrich, former Oregon head coach

— Chuck Cecil, Arizona assistant

— Bryan Harsin, Boise State head coach

— Mike Norvell, Memphis head coach

— Butch Jones, former Tennessee head coach

— Dino Babers, Syracuse head coach

Other candidates, from the Arizona Daily Star:

— Jeff Brohm, Purdue head coach

— Jason Candle, Toledo head coach

— Jedd Fisch, UCLA offensive coordinator

— Lane Kiffin, Florida Atlantic head coach

— Ken Niumatalolo, Navy head coach

— Joe Salave’a, Oregon assistant head coach

— Scott Satterfield, Appalachian State head coach

— Jeff Tedford, Fresno State head coach

— Matt Wells, Utah State head coach

— Frank Wilson, Texas-San Antonio head coach

— Marcel Yates, Arizona assistant coach


63 Replies to “Coaching Carousel”

  1. You Ol AZ. You watching this golf playoff. Nah, yur probably in bed already after that early-bird special.

    Got some names in the South. Buffs coaching staff gotta up their game………and more than a little. Getting good talent………..handle it

    So you say the Buffs have a “real QB coach” Well do ya now? They say he mentored Eli. Well okay but I gotta……..

    Hoping for a bowl game that is all. Well actually not. I wanna see a frigging offense that can score 40 points a game. I also want em to whip the KornKobs too.

    Long ol off season on the way.


    Note: Of course they didn’t offer the job. They new the $ would need to be huge to get me to come out of retirement (I’m only 40) I told em to go cheap so they did. But my consultancy fees are pro bono for the Mighty Buff.

    Note 2: Hopefully he IS a real QB coach and stays focused on grooming the QB’s like he did Eli……………

      1. To Bad, or is it Too Bad, or maybe Two Bad, you can’t go back and edit your spelling errors without God and everyone knowing about it.

  2. If Sumlin is the hire down here that will be lot more popular then the Navy Guy (I didn’t want to take the time to spell his name so I called him Guy). Actually the QB Tate tweeted a few days ago that he didn’t come here to run the Triple Option, it was later taken down. Tate wants to develop into a pro prospect and not just be known as a running QB.

    This will be a pretty good situation for Sumlin or anyone for that matter as they have a lot of young guys back that played a lot on D last year and they feel that they also have a legitimate Heisman candidate next season.

    We shall see. I just hope the Buffs with changes they are making and some of the JUCO’s, new kids, guys that got to play and mature this past season, an offensive and defensive line that can play above average most of the time, and a QB with a real QB coach (sorry VK they didn’t offer you the job) and new play calling will turn the Buffs into a contender again.

    Now that isn’t wishing for much is it?

    1. seems like the Tate QB wish is a ship that has sailed. I checked his stats. His completion percentage aint bad but he only throws about 10 attempts per game. That CP might go down if he starts passing more and opponents lighten up the box…..and….he is already a pro prospect as a RB.
      How much a factor was Tate on the new coach hire? and refusal by “the guy”? (I’m guilty too) Was the AZ AD that desperate he was going to hire a coach simply on one player’s abilities?
      I have been disgusted watching the Bronco’s latest draft bust, Paxton Lynch, go into brain freeze when it comes time during those couple of seconds to pull the trigger only to take off running. With a guy who can run like Tate the temptation may be overwhelming.
      Kudos to Niumatalolo (take that…I didn’t scroll up either) for dismissing the big pay raise and to stay where he is already appreciated.

    1. This is starting to wear thin (again) … a “CU fan” who believes every coach in existence is better than that of his beloved Buffs – we get it.
      Guess I’ll have to start editing the response section (again) …

      1. I’m interested in seeing if he brings in the triple option, or modifies it, or goes wholly more “conventional” in offensive scheme. If he sticks with it, then the Pac 12 really will be the most diverse conference in terms of offensive style of play. Fun for defensive coordinators. You’ve got a few spread and hybrid spread teams. You’ve got Stanford, who remains pretty steadfastly power oriented, along with USC to some degree, and the triple option? I could see Khalil Tate loving that style.

        Should be another fun season on tap.

        Go Buffs.

        1. I’m thinking Niumatalolo was probably the real OC at Navy but if he decides to bring his titled OC with him that will tell you he is going to stick with the option. There are probably few other OC’s around who have successfully helped coach the option. And as Eric mentioned, as long as Tate is on the team the odds are he will stick with the option.

      2. Hear hear. Couldn’t agree more, Stuart. Critical analysis is fine, but constant harping, and silly nicknames get old fast. I enjoy a snarky comment every now and then, but you’d think that we were still in the middle of Hawkins era (I just vomited a little in my mouth at the mention of that clown show).

        1. Here here as well.

          The nickname is earned. The nickname can be unearned. Not letting MickeyMac off the hook after his last years performance and his cluelesness about the whole year…………his comment about a Captain after a listless game…..”He doesn’t know what he is talking about.” that right there sealed his fate with me. Out of touch and about to put the ship on the rocks. Boom

          Constant harping is ill defined. Repetitive truth?
          Making light of the situation is all that’s left after last years performance………on all fronts……….but 83 it starts at the top.

          It really is funny how “Fans” can deal with stuff……but “Fanatics” can not and will not.

          HWSRN was/is the flimflam man extraordinaire. I am hoping we never see that type of act again.


          Note: At some point “its my ball and I am taking it and going home” gets old.

  3. I like the idea of Les Miles in the high desert. The Pac 12 can then be almost full of coaches that VK would have rather seen leading our Buffs, than Mac.

    Go Buffs.

      1. Heck man, he cannot lose, and he knows it. Any D1 coach knows it. I have to stop myself from getting into the dark side, joking about certain coaches getting canned for more serious stuff than losing, but…

        How ’bout Helfrich maybe getting the OC job at UCLA? Man, that Kelly guy must have no clue about a good offensive coordinator. Doesn’t he know the Buffs didn’t do anything while Mark was the OC in Boulder? And his offense was stale and predictable in Oregon, and that’s why they slid as they did? VK could’ve told him that, no doubt.

        Go Buffs.

        1. Mark slipped cause Kelley left. Kelley needed a gopher…Took helfric…..mistake giving him the head coaching job……..just like your boy hawkins………you loved him till you didn’t

          No hc job for helfric………..couldn’t execute it

          1. If by saying “Kelly needed a gopher” you mean it as in “Mark go get me another Mariotta” then yes, you may be right. Players make plays. Players win games.

            Go Buffs.

        2. Hmmmm,

          What I find interesting is that MickeyMacs contract calls for an automatic roll over at the end of the season unless one or the other notifys the other in writing that it will not happen.

          So this year because the contract was signed in June, it was stated that both parties agreed there was no roll over.

          I would bet 10 and 4 would have beget a rollover regardless.

          While 5 and 7 would not and did not.


        3. Pretty sure Helfrich didn’t get Mariotta. Pretty sure Kelly needed his gopher back. He will find another one. Always does.

          Helfrich in Chicago is neat. Anything to improve the NFL. Gawd those are bad games. Mickey wouldn’t work cause he is a parcels guy. Do a better job at SJs…….couese doesn’t pay as well…….and once pass the facade its all about the money………Players make plays…………Coaches make money……….Players protect the coaches……….wow

          What happened to your buddy and best DC you know………..The BaerTrap……….and his lil buddy.


          I just hope rope-r-dope doesn’t mess this up.

    1. Yur assumptions are like yur football knowledge. Not valid.
      MickeyMac is a fine man. Lil Mac is a fine son.

      There ya have it

      Go Buffs.

  4. If Leavitt does become the duck HC I know one win every year that will please him immensely…make that 2. Us and OSU….although I doubt Chev will be the pushover BL is.

  5. What an amazing coaching carousel season.

    As ya’ll know, I’m glad the Buffs aren’t participating. It’ll be interesting to see if they’ll be looking for new assistants, or not.

    It’s just funny what Tennessee’s done to themselves. Curious to see how Jimbo does at A&M.

    Really curious to see if Willie bails to FSU, and then, who will Oregon turn to? Leavitt? Someone else?

    Also, curious about Kelly’s staff in LA.

    2018 in the Pac 12 should be another fun and interesting season.


    Go Buffs.

    1. Nah The Buffs aren’t playing in the ‘Coaching Carousel Game’, at least not yet……..
      But there is no question that the Mighty Buffs are playing in the:

      ‘Coaching Wheel of Fortune Game’ and……….

      That ol needle is just about on “Bankrupt”


      1. That was actually funny, VK. Got a chuckle this fine morning. Maybe the time off on the international putt putt circuit is helping your one liners?

        Interesting to read that Walters won’t got to Nebraska w/ Frost, his buddy. I only saw the headline Stu posted though. Going to read it now.

        Go Buffs.

          1. The funny thing, even during the lost decade of CU Football, most of the assistants who left did well at their next stops. It was just the head guys who were mostly never heard from again…

            It’s also funny that “allegedly” Jonathan Smith, a Petersen disciple and dude running his offense for a long, long time, reached out to CU about Lindgren. Even if Lindgren was on the way out anyway, Smith must see something there VK doesn’t. Or, he’d have hired someone else.

            Now, having said that, I still maintain that coaching (or managing any enterprise) is as much about fit, as anything. Again, the most glaring example in football, is the difference between Singletary and then Harbaugh, at the ’49ers. Same roster. Same style of football. I’d argue same football knowledge. Yet, Harbaugh got the players to buy in and perform in a way Singletary could not. There are numerous other similar examples (geez, how ’bout dem Giants this year?). And, the fit w/ Lindgren at CU has run its course. Glad he was there to help put the lost decade of CU football behind us.

            Looking forward to seeing what Chev can do, now that he’s the lead dog of the offense. I think Adams may bring a bit more “nasty” to the equation. Lindgren certainly is the introverted, quiet, cerebral type. Attitude may just be the little thing that can make a big difference in CU’s 2018 offense.

            I think a more composed, experienced and focused Montez may be a huge help, too (Heck, if he wins the job. At least there can be a real QB competition now too! Montez, Noyer and Lytle can battle it out.)

            Can’t wait to see them out there in what, 10 months?

            Go Buffs.

          2. I was reading your post and nodding Eric until I ran into the word “cerebral.” I hope Lindgren does improve his stock at OSU, against Buffs excepted of course. He does have an opportunity to get a new perspective with an HC that is an ex QB who more than likely will force that new perspective.

  6. Coach Mac’s To Do List:
    -Develop accountability of head coach and assistants
    -Put accountability on his players (why is Bobo not benched after 3 drops?)
    -Play the playmakers, not always the seniors (Winfree, Lavishka, Landman, Nixon – for the love of all that is good and holy please put slow, can’t make an open-field tackle “coach on the field” Gamboa on the bench)
    -Recruit D-lineman instead of receivers
    -Make some changes in the coaching staff
    -Learn how to act on the sideline – flat out embarrassing at times

    But from where this program came from over the prior decade, there’s no way you get rid of MacIntyre after a 10 win season.

  7. lasting impression of MM: ” players make plays….. but coaches have no accountability”

    Cant scheme
    Cant adjust to a backup QB….TWICE
    Cant stop the running game
    Cant get up for a win-or-go-home game
    Cant prepare over a bye
    Cant be competitive early – 27 – 0? 28 – 0?
    Cant win night games
    Cant win in the rain

    Boy, if only there wasnt rain, night games, running qbs, or road games……

    MM blames players for a loss
    “didnt execute”
    “didnt respond”
    “dont know what they’re talking about”
    “werent ready to compete”

    There isnt any real accountability for the guys PAID to call the game, manage the plays or navigate the season.

    Going to be a long off season watching good coaches go elsewhere while MM refuses to accept responsibility and hire a better staff.

    1. The biggest of these was clearly #3. If CU has even a middle-of-the-road run defense, they beat UCLA, AU and ASU, don’t have to ‘escape’ OSU, and have chances to upset UW and USC.

      You’re right that they came out flat far-too-often, though. Which is strange, considering they were never flat last year. Some teams just lack drive, though, and sometimes there’s simply not much coaches can do about it.

      The problem, I think was accountability. Run defense absolutely terrible? Fire Jeffcoat. “Black out boyz” not producing? Put in the younger guys instead. Etc.

  8. Hey Stuart. How about an article on all the Pac-12 coordinators and position coaches now available with the recent firings (and what recruits they could bring with them) ?

    I want MM to go, as it appears the players are tuning him out for whatever reason. But, it appears we will be stuck for at least another year……

    What SHOULD be in play though are the assistants from PAC 12 programs, as upgrades are needed across the board at DL, TE, OC, DC, etc, etc…….and if they are good recruiters, bring some studs with you.

  9. I continue to be dismayed that Jim Leavitt is still (apparently?) being blackballed and isn’t at the top of some of these coaching lists

  10. The new UCLA Coach

    Kelly: great coaches “make simple seem complex to opponents
    but make complex seem simple to own teams”

    Whoa What a concept

    The Buffs coaching staff needs to take a class

        1. Hmmm… poor staffs that Kelly had in the NFL created those failures, yet you’re out quoting his coach speak? Didn’t he hire those staffs?

          But, wait, don’t you claim it’s Mac’s poor staff that creates the failure at CU (10-win season notwithstanding)?

          Oh, and don’t forget that Kelly’s OC at Oregon, was your favorite Mark Helfrich (at least for half the time).

          Somehow, your logic gets more and more pretzel like each year. Must be an age thing?

          Carry on.

          Go Buffs.

          1. Notwithstanding Leavitt. Otherwise no 10

            Helfrich. Never cared for him

            Yup Kelley hired those staffs. In the nfl. Why he was fired

            You are not in the know

    1. The more I think about how this season unfolded makes me more angry. I read a stat that since the AP began naming a coach of the year in 1998, MM is the 1st winner to have a losing record the following year! And each winner has won at least 8 games and gone bowling the following year! Let that sink in. I’m afraid he won’t be able to build any sustained success. I don’t think he has a vision for the program and is a small time thinker and doesn’t react well to criticism. His recruiting has become mediocre and if he wants to develop 3* players into prime performers he needs a top notch staff which he clearly doesn’t have and cannot seem to attract. I’m afraid we need to suffer through a disastrous season next year to get his ass out of hear and start over.

  11. The NCAA football coaching carousel is an interesting thing. It seems like there are a lot of things that need to fall into place for a coaching change to prove to be a good long term decision. Things have changed in recent years with really big money being thrown around by big time football schools. Like Leavitt’s decision, sometimes it’s hard to turn down a nice raise even if it’s not for a head coaching position. Even football schools with deep pockets sometimes whiff on their decision. Florida, for example. McElwain had a good “pedigree” with being an assistant at Alabama, and then had a pretty impressive run at CSU. Flopped at Florida. It’s not a proven science or “equation” type of deal. As I have stated in previous posts, I am NOT a McIntyre fan. I am, however, a big Rick George fan. I trust that he will make a good decision when the time comes. Unfortunately, this might not be the time, all things considered. My biggest concern is with the administration and academia at CU. I just don’t see that they will ever get on board with deciding to be, and declaring as, a big time football school. Seems to be a “Boulder thing” in general. Therefore, I’m not sure what reasonable expectations should be. I don’t think CU will EVER compete for a nat’l championship again in today’s college football world. It’s not an even playing field in regards to academic requirements, for one example. We don’t have a big time deep pockets donor, for another. I do, however, think it’s very reasonable to expect a top 25 team most years, and winning seasons at the very least. I don’t think we have the right head coach to accomplish that right now. I’m resigned to another disappointing year in 2018. After that, who knows? I sure hope Rick George is happy here…

  12. They are a better team than they were 4 years ago but I did expect 7-5. Losses to ASU and UCLA shouldn’t have happened.

  13. Dear Lord! What a season! I grew up Jersey and have been a NY Giants fan since before Parcells was head coach. When Parcells took over, the Giants suffered through a few 2-12 seasons. Even though the Giants weren’t winning, there was always a sense that the team was only going to be down temporarily. You saw it in Big Bill’s face and you saw it on the teams face that it was only a matter of time until the team turned around.

    For being Parcells protege, Big MM has not provided me with any sense that this team is on the precipitous of greatness. I don’t see it in his actions, I don’t see it on the other coaches faces, I don’t see it on the players faces.

    I’m tired of hearing we can’t “afford” this or that. Winning brings fans, winning brings recruits, winning brings national recognition, winning brings booster $$!

    Spend the money on a real coaching staff. Let not the brand new facilities go to waste!

    Another season like this and I’ll have to become a Duck fan (oh lord, please no).

  14. just read the Howell article where MM is quoted as saying he will have to go back and review every bit of film of this past forgettable season to figure out what went wrong.

    I cant believe he said that. Has he been asleep the entire season? He hasnt been evaluating things as they happened? As far as I concerned he has to go now. that will also take care of any lousy assistants we have all been griping about.

    This brings me to something else I have been griping about for years. In any other business there is an expected rate of performance on exchange for compensation. In football a coach can stink it up bigtime and still get millions guaranteed. The money has gotten so big in college football if parity is any concern at all, they might as well just become an NFL farm league, draft recruits, get rid of any academic requirements, call it what it is and be honest about it.

    1. Hey EP, what business were you in? Self employed, or did you work for someone? I presume you were good at what you did, in either case. But, let’s take a step back.

      I agree, that football coaches get paid silly money. And, by and large, specifically D1 head coaches, are typically the most highly paid employee of a State. It is silly.

      On the other hand, in what profession do 15% of the people in that position get laid off every year? And, in coaching D1 football, it’s not just them losing their jobs, but their entire staff (in most cases). I could go on about the “trials and tribulations” of the profession, but…

      Coaching college football is a zero sum game. For every winner, there is a loser. Of what, 65 P5 coaches, roughly 10 get fired every year, only to resurface elsewhere, right? Or, in some cases (you know, some at CU) only to never resurface again?

      And, refilling that pipeline with “winning” coaches is not as easy as it looks. Legendary coaches are just not that common. Heck, consistently winning coaches aren’t either.

      Furthermore, it’s not just a matter of “knowing football” or being able to “inspire men” that makes a winning coach. There are obviously numerous other factors, but the right fit, is key too. Again, the examples here are plentiful.

      Now, does that mean that we cannot want more than a 5-7 season (another one) for our Buffs? Absolutely not. We can, and should. However, some perspective may be worthwhile.

      Five wins isn’t good enough. No doubt. But, it’s still tied for I think the 5th best season in the last 17 years of CU football. More importantly, the overall trajectory of the program is still pointing up – provided next year unfolds as I believe it will (more wins, obviously).

      And, I don’t think there’s anyone working harder to solve this year’s problems than Mac. Regardless of his comments in a press conference. Some may think he’s checked out. I don’t think that’s his style. Bad media relations? May be his style. But, I think the dude’s a tireless worker, who cares about his kids, his staff, and his entire program. Micro manager? Maybe. Tireless worker? Absolutely.

      Dude can still learn. Everyone can. Oh wait. Peter Principle says everyone hits their ceiling? Still curious, and have not heard, how people who buy into that principle square that with their self-image, but that’s another story.

      I’ll say it again. Mac is building a program. He put the “lost decade” of CU football behind us. They went from a laughing stock, to being able to beat anyone, on any given day (ok, being able to beat almost anyone).

      Did they regress this year? Yes. Will anyone deny that? No. Will the entire staff be working on what they can do to grow and move back in the right direction? Yes. Will the players? I think they will, too.

      Now, again, if they go through next year w/ similar play and results as this year? Then, it may in fact be that Mac is a “turnaround guy” not a “keep success rolling” guy, but? Until then, the jury is still out.

      Looking forward to seeing it all unfold.

      Go Buffs.

      1. willing to accept mediocrity and brain dead O schemes and wait forever? If I had seen any other change except for Leavitt in the entire time he has been here maybe I would accept your pollyanna sometime in the next decade MM might learn or wake up argument

        1. I think Schlabach captures my point pretty well:

          And, so far, Mac is still heading in the right direction, in my estimation.

          Any comparison to coaches who’ve had better records after the same amount of time, who just got fired, must be taken in the context of where those teams were when said coach started their tenure.

          I challenge anyone to find a program that was arguably the worst in college football in the modern era, who got a new coach, who’s done a better turnaround than Mac has at CU in the same time frame. Go ahead. Who are they, and what are they doing now?

          Now, it’s completely fair to wonder if Mac is “only” a turnaround guy. But, in my opinion, that is still a premature judgement. 2018 will tell us a lot about that point.

          Go Buffs.

          1. Banker boy there are more than a few of them.

            One example

            2004 1-10
            2005 2-9
            2006 5-7
            2007 4-9
            2008 0-12
            2009 5-7 New coach
            2010 7-6
            2011 7-6
            2012 7-6
            2013 9-4
            2014 8-6 New Coach
            2015 8-6
            2016 12-2
            2017 10-2 (probably 12-2)

            As usual your facts are speculation which you need to provide any evidence that MickeyMac is not the second coming of the flim flam man.


          2. VK, that looks like the UW record since 2004, right? I knew before I looked. My brother’s a Husky alum, and I grew up in WA.

            So, what are you saying? Who was the “turnaround guy” at UW?

            Was it Sark, who went from 0-12 to 5-7 then Seven Win Steve? Where is he now? Oh, back in the NFL?

            Petey? Surely, he didn’t turn that program around. He excelled w/ the cupboard Sark left him.

            So, your point again is what? I asked you to show me a similar turnaround to Mac’s and show me where the responsible coach is now. You did neither.

            Come on, man. Step your game up.

            Go Buffs.

          3. You got your interest rates wrong as usual.

            Sark took over from Willingham who went

            2005 2-9
            2006 5-7
            2007 4-9
            2008 0-12

            Looks pre MickeyMac

            Sark went
            2010 7-6
            2011 7-6
            2012 7-6
            2013 9-4

            So step your game up you fool. You get it wrong again and again.

            Your brother must be you assistant mail room guy.


            And guess what MickeyMac ain’t going there. Not as a DC as you would say he could be.

            Note: And Sark couldn’t handle a real business like MickeyMac
            Fired and moved on

          4. Put down the sauce, my man. Everyone knows sark wasn’t 0 and 12. What I was pointing out is that you apparently were correlating sark’s turnaround at uw to Mac’s at CU. What I highlighted is that sark was seven win Steve. Mac won 10 and competed in a conference championship. Better than sark ever did. Mac had one year taking a step back. Seven win Steve was just that. Mediocre. You surely would have called for his head halfway through year two.

            One could also make the case that the CU roster was far less talented when mac took over than uw’s was from willingham to sark.

            Try again buddy?

            Go Buffs.

          5. Nope wouldn’t have called for his head he win. Every year.

            MickeyMac didn’t have Leavitt 4 years

            There ya go

            Leavitt did the same thing at Oregon he did at

            Just gotta look at the facts

            Hell, Sark mighta had 10 wins his 5th year

            I showed you someone who did it better than Mac cause you asked me too

            Again facts

            He did it better. Took a team with 0 wins and never won
            less than 7

            Not that I like sark cause I don’t

            Oh well you are blinded by your own foolishness

          6. Le Bankanator says……..

            I challenge anyone to find a program that was arguably the worst in college football in the modern era, who got a new coach, who’s done a better turnaround than Mac has at CU in the same time frame. Go ahead. Who are they, and what are they doing now?

            So Let me correct that for ya

            Years before he took over….0-12…….1-11
            1st year…………………5-7……..4-8
            2nd year…………………7-6……..2-10
            3rd year…………………7-6……..4-9
            4th year………………….7-6……10-4
            5th year………………….9-4……5-7

            In 5 years sark went to 4 bowls. MickeyMac has gone to 1
            Sark is and OC in the nfl. Mac is still in boulder

            I call Bull Sheet on your statement. Which they mostly are

            Note: Sark was/is a drunk…………Mac is not.

            Note 2 in the 4 years before Mac took over the Buffs won 12 games. In the 4 years before Sark took over the Huskies won 11 games.

          7. Let me get this straight, VK.

            You’re saying that Sark, who had an experienced Jake Locker for two years, did a better job than Mac in turning around a program? Really?

            I think you underestimate the difference in their respective rosters.

            Try again?

            Go Buffs.

          8. Hmm yup Locker did okay eh?

            Amazing what good coaching will do for ya.

            I would like the Buffs to try that approach. (Good Coaching) Rather than your 10 “I am sure they will, I sure they will figure it out. blah blah blah……. ten year plan.

            You make your “cheer leader” bloviations (what a great non-word) then have to start doing the “Harlem Shuffle”


            Ya do the Monkey shine………Perfect


            You may be the real flim flam man #3

      2. Hilarious. Now you’re saying that coaching is what made Locker a good QB? Dude was rated like the 5th best QB by ESPN in the 2006 class. Yet, his last two years “all” that great coaching from Sark could get from him was seven wins?

        Wow man. Your arguments turn 180s on themselves with each post you make.

        I wonder what CU’s turnaround under Mac would’ve looked like with a roster that Sark had at UW?

        Sadly, Mac had to start from ground zero, basically.

        5-7 this year? Sure, some reason to gripe. But, you still have not shown me any similar or better turnaround, and where those coaches are now. You tried w/ Sark and UW, but… there’s just no comparison there. Apples and oranges. Or, Buffs and Dawgs, maybe.

        You said there were lots of examples. So, where are they?

        Go Buffs.

        1. Yup Mac has blinded you.

          You made an outrageous statement as you are most likely do. You did it without any qualifications.

          But you were shown you had no details not facts just an undying love for the MickeyMac. Once shown wrong you went into dance mode and denial mode And all the reasons it could not be true. And go into Locker mode.l Well boy it is true. And you were shown how you really are a Mac lover. You got more excuses than Mac himself.

          Your denial is a facsimile of the weekly press conference denials by FFM2. But That’s oKay. You want more? You go find em. You said there were none.

          You be having one. You are in total defensive mode (A huge MickeMac trait)

          Good bye loser. You have stood naked on the beach. And you ain’t it.

          1. Sweet. Let the insults, opinions without substantiation and incessant pretzel logic keep flowing.

            I’ll look forward to seeing you back after your snow-bird trips to FL and AZ for some sweet putt putt.

            Go Buffs.

    2. I don’t like that quote. I don’t like the lack of preparation the team shows. Coach Leavitt took the same talent level and made it work. Get rid of Lingering and find a decent defensive coordinator. With as much money as this program had put in to it I’d like to believe we can attract top coaching talent with our campus and facilities.

      1. Not nearly true on talent level of the D. Leavitt had 2 x 300 pound D-lineman in his first year, then got a 3rd 300 pound D-lineman (the best one) back from a 1 year absence in his 2nd year. All 3 got into NFL training camps. He had 3 defensive backs who got drafted in the first 4 rounds of the NFL draft. Oliver was great, but big drop-off after that in the corners. And Tedric Thompson ran circles around Laguda. As a group they weren’t playmakers like the 2016 D.

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