Random Thoughts – Volume XIII – February 24, 2019

Buff Trivia Question of the Week … The CU men’s basketball team has not played a ranked team all season. If that holds through tournament play, it will mark the first time in years that CU has gone through an entire season without facing a single ranked team. When was the last time this occurred?

  • 2011-12 season, CU’s first in the Pac-12;
  • 2008-09 season, the last time Kansas had a down year;
  • 1980-81, Stuart’s first year in Boulder; or
  • It’s never happened before (or at least not since team rankings started being kept)

CU v. Nebraska – Under the stars? …  

None of CU’s 2019 kickoff times have been set, though we do know that the Buffs will play three Friday games – v. CSU on August 30th; at Oregon on October 11th; and v. USC on October 25th.

So, at this point, it’s pure speculation as to kickoff times for this fall. At Matt’s College Sports Media Blog, however, there is speculation as to when the Colorado/Nebraska game on September 8th might be played.

According to Matt, here are the best bets for the Pac-12 for Week Two, along with some other relevant games (all times MT):

Friday … 8:00 p.m., Pac-12 Networks: Sacramento State at Arizona State

Saturday …
Noon, Pac-12 Networks: Nevada at Oregon
1:30 p.m., ABC, Cincinnati at Ohio State
3:00 p.m.,  Pac-12 Networks: Northern Colorado at Washington State
5:00 p.m., ESPN2: San Diego State at UCLA
6:00 p.m., ABC: Texas A&M at Clemson
6:00 p.m., FOX: Stanford at USC
6:00 p.m., Pac-12 Networks: Northern Illinois at Utah
7:00 p.m., ESPN: West Virginia at Missouri
8:00 p.m., FS1: Nebraska at Colorado
8:30 p.m., ESPN2: California at Washington
8:30 p.m., CBSSN: Oregon State at Hawai’i
9:00 p.m., Pac-12 Networks: Northern Arizona at Arizona
Thoughts?

My first reaction is that the Nevada at Oregon game will probably not be the first game on that Saturday, as it would mean an 11:00 a.m., Pacific time kickoff. Possible, but not likely. If it were me, I’d switch out the Utah/Northern Illinois game, so that you would at least give the home team a noon kickoff.

As to the Buffs v. Cornhuskers … Last fall, the CU/Nebraska game was the 1:30 p.m., MT, ABC national game. Why not the same this fall? Well, it’s now Year Two for Scott Frost, and while there is optimism in Lincoln, the ABC honchos are looking at a second straight year of a Nebraska team coming off of a 4-8 season and a Colorado team coming off of a 5-7 season.

Texas A&M at Clemson is clearly the marquee game of the day, so the question will be whether ABC/ESPN likes Cincinnati at Ohio State, West Virginia at Missouri, or Nebraska at Colorado as being the better draw for the 1:30 Saturday afternoon ABC slot.

Perhaps cooler heads will prevail, and CU will get a 1:30 p.m., MT, kickoff – which I would prefer. If not, Mel Tucker’s first game at Folsom Field may be finishing up around midnight local time.

CU … a  junior college haven?

The accepted mantra for Colorado fans for generations has been that schools other than CU were able to supplement their rosters with junior college talent, while Buff coaches were hamstrung by stiff admission requirements for transfers.

Either the sentiment was incorrect, or has changed over recent years.

According to a story in Sports Illustrated, in the last five years, only two schools have signed more junior college transfers than has Colorado. Kansas tops the list with 41, followed by West Virginia (28), Washington State and Colorado (26 each), Utah (23) and Oklahoma State and Iowa State (22 each).

A look at recent CU Signing Classes indicates that Colorado has definitely dipped its toe into the junior college ranks more often than in the past:

  • This spring, the Buffs have added six junior college player to the roster. The total has been at least five each of the past three seasons. Before that, however, you have to go back to the Recruiting Class of 2000 to find another single season with as many as five junior college recruits;
  • In the past three seasons, the Buffs have signed 18 junior college recruits. Only once in the past 45 seasons has CU added that many JC players in such a short span, and that was in 1982-84, when CU
  • In the past six seasons (2014-19), the Buffs have added 30 junior college players. In the six seasons before that (2008-13), the grand total was five.

Welcome to the new CU, where junior college transfers are the new normal (though we can certainly hope that, with success under the new coaching staff, quick fixes will no longer be as necessary).

Mike Leach being Mike Leach … 

While the last two seasons for Buff fans have witnessed frustrating losses to Washington State, it’s hard not to have some appreciation for what Mike Leach is doing in Pullman. Outside of Corvallis, there is no more difficult spot in the Pac-12 to build a winner than at Washington State, yet Mike Leach is pulling it off.

And doing so with typical Mike Leach flair.

The latest … this spring Leach will be teaching “Insurgent Warfare and Football Strategies” to 40 lucky Washington State students. Applicants – and you know there will be hundreds – must submit two essays of no longer than 200 words that answer the following questions: “Can the British strategy in the Malaya insurgency be used today? Is the wishbone a potentially viable offense for the NFL? Why or why not?”.

Not interested in going toe-to-toe with Mike Leach in a classroom?

You don’t have to search very hard to find Mike Leach witticisms … Here is a YouTube video where Mike Leach talks about the greatest invention of the 20th century, the best food he was ever served on a recruiting visit, and the oddest things he’s found on a recruiting visit:

A national treasure.

Oh, and by the way, the answers to the above questions would be “no” (the internet and social media – with the subsequent condemnations – would preclude even the attempt at the British strategy in the Malaya insurgency) and “no” (quarterbacks are just too valuable a commodity in the NFL to have them be even one of three options in a wishbone offense).

A no-brainer … 

The Pac-12 has hired an outside agency to conduct an independent review of its football officiating, a vital step toward restoring credibility in the aftermath of the 2018 scandal in which an untrained official participated in the replay-review process.

The outside agency, Sibson Consulting, is a national firm that has reviewed officiating programs in the NBA and NFL.

… “This is something the ADs want done,’’ said Arizona State athletic director Ray Anderson.

They are not the only ones …

Buff Trivia Question of the Week … The CU men’s basketball team has not played a ranked team all season. If that holds through tournament play, it will mark the first time in years that CU has gone through an entire season without facing a single ranked team. When was the last time this occurred?

  • 2011-12 season, CU’s first in the Pac-12;
  • 2008-09 season, the last time Kansas had a down year;
  • 1980-81, Stuart’s first year in Boulder; or
  • It’s never happened before (or at least not since team rankings started being kept)

Answer … In the 1980-81 season, the Buffs did not play a single ranked team (In 2011-12, Colorado did not play a ranked team until reaching the NCAA tournament, defeating No. 23 UNLV before falling to No. 9 Baylor. In 2008-09, the Buffs did not play a ranked Kansas team, but did face off against No. 2 Oklahoma and No. 11 Missouri).

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2 Replies to “Random Thoughts – Vol. XIII”

  1. As long as we don’t act like we won the National Championship if we ever manage to tie them at home. I’m sure that one is in the game archives…my one and only trip ever to Manhattan.
    I too have been thinking about KSU the last couple of years in this regard.

  2. CU fan used to mock K State for being hotel JC. I guess we jinxed ourselves. Its a tall step from where we are now…..that first one where you have to win enough games to start getting the better players out of high school. When we can get the 7 out of the best 10 players from Colorado high schools that will be an indication we are also getting the better players from other parts of the country. Maybe we can get AZBuff to start holding “get to know CU” functions for the Phoenix Tucson area kids.

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