We all know that CU's philosophy going forward will be very similar to Stanford's. So I started to study the recent success of Stanford and believe we may see many similarities between what they did a few years ago and what we are seeing with CU now.
Take a look at Stanford's recruiting class of 2008. Their class was ranked 50th. (CU's class was ranked 15th, but let's not talk about that...) Only one name stands out to me. Can you guess who? That year, they had only two 4-star recruits out of their 14. One of them was a tall skinny QB. Sounding familiar? No, I'm not saying that Dillion is the next Luck. But CU will also run a similar pro-style running offense and incorporate a hard nosed defensive mentality.
Before the 2008 season, Stanford was picked to finish 9th in the Pac 10. That year under newer head coach Jim Harbaugh, they finished 5-7 and 7th in the PAC 10. Much like what we think CU will fair this year.
In 2009, they had the 20th ranked recruiting class. They were picked 7th in the preseason Pac 10 rankings. They went 8-5 including a loss to Oklahoma in their bowl game. Finishing the season ranked 4th in the PAC 10. They ran the ball a lot that year. Had some good RB named Toby something...
In 2010, they had the 26th ranked recruiting class. In the preseason rankings, they were picked 33rd nationally and 5th in the Pac 10. That tall and now less- skinny QB took over and they had a decent year. They went 12 and 1, including an orange bowl blow out victory over VaTech. Finishing as the 2nd ranked team in the Pac 10 and #4 in the final BCS rankings.
Their 2011 recruiting class was ranked 22nd. They are preseason #10 in the nation and #2 in the Pac 12. They have that same QB who decided to come back instead of being the #1 pick in the draft. I think they may do pretty good!
The moral of this story is to show that IF CU can even come close to the success of Stanford by using the same model, we could be seeing the beginnings of a return to greatness!
I don't expect that we WILL do the same things that Stanford did starting in 2008. BUT I do expect that there is no reason why we CAN'T!!!