Random Thoughts – Volume XVIII – March 31, 2019

Buff Trivia Question of the Week … Tyler Bey and McKinley Wright IV earned first-team All-Pac-12 honors, just the second time CU had two players do so in the same season in the last 50 years. When was the last time two Buffs were so honored? (hint: It wasn’t all that long ago).

Jack of All Trades … 

New offensive coordinator Jay Johnson was interviewed by Brian Howell at the Daily Camera this week. When asked about what offense CU will run this fall, Johnson replied “very multiple”.

“We’ll be a little bit of pro, a little bit of spread, a little bit of air raid,” Johnson said. “We’re going to try to be very, very multiple in all that we do with different elements of each. We have a very diverse coaching staff offensively, so really trying to mold all those ideas and different schemes and systems into one.”

Jack of all trades … master of none?

Other Pac-12 teams have built programs by establishing an identity:

  • Hard to remember now, but just over a decade ago, Stanford was a floundering program. Then Jim Harbaugh came along (followed by David Shaw) to create a perennial contender built on the backs of huge linemen and hard-nosed defense;
  • Oregon went the entire 20th century without a ten-win season, but throw in fancy uniforms and a spread offense which no one could contain (along with millions in amenities), and the nation now looks upon Oregon as a solid Power-Five program; and
  • Washington State, despite all of the challenges of being a smaller school out in the middle of nowhere, has become a consistent winner under Mike Leach and his Air Raid style offense.

Can Colorado establish itself as a national power with a “little bit of this, little bit of that” offense?

“At the end of the day, you still have to see who you have and put those guys in a position to make plays and put the right guys out there,” Johnson said. “We’re just trying to develop all those thoughts and ideas at this point and that will continue to evolve through spring.”

Five months to the season opener against Colorado State … so stay tuned …

Brother, can you spare $3.542 million … 

The Mike MacIntyre era at the University of Colorado officially came to an end this week.

Or, if you want to be technical, it got moved up to January 20, 2020.

The story on the buyout of the remainder of MacIntyre’s contract was posted in the Daily Camera

The University of Colorado and former head football coach Mike MacIntyre have reached a settlement agreement that will pay him $7.238 million to close out his contract.

MacIntyre, who was fired by CU on Nov. 18 and is now the defensive coordinator at Mississippi, will receive a lump sum of $3.542 million no later than Monday, and a second lump sum of $3.696 million on Jan. 20, 2020.

The agreement was executed on Tuesday and allows CU to save roughly $3 million on MacIntyre’s buyout.

MacIntyre, who coached the Buffs from 2013 to 2018, had three years and $10.3 million remaining on his contract when he was terminated without cause in November. Per the terms of the contract, he was entitled to claim the full amount remaining on the deal, with CU making monthly payments through 2021.

Glass half-full? Or half-empty?

On the positive side, the CU athletic department can move on, knowing that the terms of the buyout will save the school around $3 million dollars over the next two years. Mike MacIntyre, meanwhile, can move on, depositing a huge check this week, while not having to wait around through the end of 2021 to receive his full payout of $10.3 million.

At the same time, one can only wonder why CU didn’t have some sort of off-set in MacIntyre’s post Pac-12 South title re-write which would have allowed Colorado to reduce the buyout by MacIntyre’s new contract as the defensive coordinator at Mississippi (the only off-set in the re-written contract was to come if MacIntyre accepted a head coaching job elsewhere).

Probably much ado about nothing.

Had there been such a provision, MacIntyre, instead of accepting a $1.5 million contract at Ole Miss, could have gone for some discounted deal … at the expense of the University of Colorado.

(Note … this is what Mike Riley did to stick it to Nebraska. Riley, the former Oregon State head coach, returned to Corvallis as an assistant head coach after being fired by the Cornhuskers. His salary at OSU? $50,004/year … while Riley was still receiving $170,000 per month from Nebraska, a “paycheck” Riley has been receiving since January, 2018, and will continue to receive through February, 2021).

At the end of the day, this is fair deal for both parties. MacIntyre gets two nice paydays, while the CU athletic department, according to spokesman Ryan Huff, “will make these payments over the course of two fiscal years by managing expenses and earning increased ticket revenue”.

So, when you see fans clad in Nebraska red or Air Force blue at Folsom Field this September, thank them for coming … and tell them to buy an extra beer or two.

And, in the meantime, if you need a loan for $3 million or so, Mike MacIntyre’s number at Ole Miss is 662-915-1821 …

Archive Games of the Week … 

To help you get through the off-season, I thought I would bring back some memories. Over the next few months, we’ll look back over the 1989, 1994, and 1999 seasons … 30, 25, and 20 years ago. This week: Game Two from each of those seasons.

Seems like only yesterday …

— 1989 – Game Two … No. 8 Colorado 38, No. 10 Illinois 7 … The Illini had a heralded quarterback in Jeff George, but the Buffs had two quarterbacks. One was Darian Hagan, who led the Buffs to a dominating victory on the field. The second was Sal Aunese, who watched his final game from the press box. Aunese died the following week, sending the Buffs on a quest to get to the Orange Bowl …

— 1994 – Game Two … No. 7 Colorado 55, No. 10 Wisconsin … “Swiss Cheese”, “Grated Cheese”, and “Grilled Cheese” were just some of the headlines after the Buffs ran over, around, and through the Wisconsin Badgers, 55-17. Wisconsin brought thousands of fans to Folsom, but the matchup of top ten teams failed to live up to the hype, as the Buffs dominated …

— 1999 – Game Two … Colorado 63, San Jose State 35 … After coming perilously close to being shut out by Colorado State, the Buffs responded seven days later with a record-setting performance. Playing on a grass field at home for the first time since 1970, Colorado cruised to a 28-0 first quarter lead and coasted from their to give Gary Barnett his first win as CU’s head coach …

Buff Trivia Question of the Week … Tyler Bey and McKinley Wright IV earned first-team All-Pac-12 honors, just the second time CU had two players do so in the same season in the last 50 years. When was the last time two Buffs were so honored? (hint: It wasn’t all that long ago).

Answer … In the 2012-13 season, Spencer Dinwiddie and Andre Roberson earned first-team All-Pac-12 honors; both are currently starring in the NBA.


3 Replies to “Random Thoughts – Vol. XVIII”

  1. Johnson’s not stupid! Why telegraph your offensive identity in spring ball and give the Lammies something to focus on? keep ’em guessing.

    1. Earl-My 1st thought was UH OH, they have no clue what to run or where to excel, But I’m hoping your theory is the correct one.

  2. Yo Stuart,

    So much to cover…
    Carpet bagger Mickey Mac is as classless a POS as Colorado is likely to see this century. Thanks to the universe that he is gone, gone, gone. I’m glad you listed his phone number! Maybe someone with a robocaller can put together a sales pitch selling class and graciousness and dial it in to the Ole Miss defensive coordinator. Ha!

    Huge linemen and hard nosed defense is a great place for new head coach Mel Tucker to start. It worked for Stanford and it will work again. One does not win consistently at the Power five level focusing only on defensive backs and wide receivers. The hogs up front make everything else possible. Coach Tuck understands that.

    Two of my favorite games at Folsom are listed in your archive games of the week. I remember those of us in the student section rode Jeff George unmercifully with chants of “GEORGE!” (along with “Over-Rated”) during the CU beatdown of Illinois. It was a fun game to be at Folsom.

    What I remember about the Wisconsin game was interacting with the Badger fans. I was no longer in the student section, so I had to share an area with some deep pocketed Cheeseheads. Before the game, I was intrigued by the sheer gall of the Wisconsin fans. They talked smack like no other fans I’ve run into this side of Texas A&M. They couldn’t even fathom the idea that Colorado might have a better team than Wisconsin. They even talked about how lucky we were to be able to see a team as good as Wisconsin in Boulder. And that Colorado would finally get to see what real football was all about. Blah, blah, blah. That 55-10 final score says it all. Another great day at Folsom.

    aka Boulderdevil and GoldenBuffs

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