Recapping the Colorado Buffaloes Offseason Football and Pac-12 Media Day with news, links, and stories.
But first, a moment of silence for the victims of the Aurora theater murders and the victim's family and friends. Thre isn't much to say that doesn't seem totally churlish, but here's hoping that there's something, somewhere, that can help make things better, if only for a little while.
Pac-12 Networks and Colorado > Pac12 > News-Colorado - Like maybe some Go Buffs?
On June 5, Embree called a staff meeting to discuss Richardson's possible return for the 2012 season. The Buffs staff pondered different scenarios regarding Richardson, with Embree moderating and asking each of his assistants, "What do you do?" while also reminding them, "If he continues to do what he's doing he's going to put us in a difficult situation. I say it's a difficult situation from the standpoint of I know what the fans want, but I went through the staff and said, 'What would you do?'"
When his assistant coaches had offered their answers on playing Richardson immediately if he receives medical clearance or redshirting for 2012, Embree revisited each and asked another question: "What would they do if (Richardson) was your son? I told them I'm going to look at this from the standpoint of that's Taylor and Connor Embree and as a dad what would I do?
"I've had five knee surgeries - all on the same knee. It's easy sometimes when people aren't in it, when they haven't gone through the other side of it, for them to say do this or don't do that. Anybody can make a decision when it's not them or their son. I tease him and (Doug) Rippy and tell them until they can beat me in a race, you're not cleared anyway.
"When we get to that stage, ultimately it will be his family's decision. They're the ones at the end of the day will have to live with the consequences. We all hope it's a Cinderella story, but if it isn't . . . I don't want to jeopardize his career. Yet if he's cleared and the family feels great and he feels great . . ."
And later in the article...
Whether Dillon is an immediate factor in the QB race, said Embree, "depends on where his health is and how he's stacking up with those other guys . . . if he's head and shoulders above (the rest) then we have to decide."
Embree expects "a lot of competition" at that position and almost every other. "And that's good because we didn't have it last year. I think that's a little bit of why things transpired like they did with Toney Clemons (receiver). In his mind, I think it was, 'Well, who else are you going to play?'"
Laughing, Embree said, "I'll just play with 10, I guess. I don't care. But the players all understand that now. You have to compete every time you're out there. I don't believe you just show up and after they play the Star Spangled Banner and Ralphie runs you're going to play. I don't buy that. There's no switch (to turn on). It'll be good to see competition at a lot of different positions."
I don't remember hearing comments like that last season, not that it really changes things, but it's nice to put things into better context.
The expected impact of big-time in-state recruit Josh Scott, a 6-foot-10 center from Monument, Colo., and 6-6 wing Xavier Johnson from Temecula, Calif., is already being felt. Boyle has worked out the newcomers and hasn't shied from heaping expectations on them. "Our two most highly rated guys -- Josh Scott and Xavier Johnson -- are both as good as advertised,'' Boyle said.
After the jump, the ESPN Pac-12 blog has profiled the defensive secondaries of the conference, and things might get a little hairy for the Buffs...
...and Mike Leach goes on the Oregon trail...
Mike Leach is a man of many talents. We know what success he's had as a college football coach, but he's also an excellent chef, marriage counselor and weatherman. The real question is, what occupation can't Mike Leach excel at? In order to put all of his skills to the test, we presented him with his biggest challenge yet, a guide on the Oregon Trail. With his bear hunting experience and recent affinity for Davy Crockett books, Leach goes into this challenge with a slight advantage over your run of the mill college football coach. How did he do? We take a closer look after the jump.
Colorado: The good news is junior end Chidera Uzo-Diribe, who had 5.5 sacks last year. Sophomore Juda Parker is the likely starter at the other end. He had six tackles last year as a freshman. After that, it's mostly crickets. Defensive coordinator Greg Brown has made no secret about his believe that incoming freshmen will provide depth. And potentially win starting jobs.
Pac-12 preseason position reviews: CBs - Pac-12 Blog - ESPN - Sadly, we're the only 'We'll see' team for Cornerbacks
Colorado: Yes, Greg Henderson and Parker Orms are both back, but Orms has moved to safety. And, oh boy, those numbers. The Buffs were last in the Pac-12 and 115th in the nation in pass efficiency defense. They yielded 34 touchdown passes, which was six more than any other team. They grabbed just seven interceptions, which tied for last in the conference. Opponents completed nearly 66 percent of their passes. But the incoming freshman class is a major "maybe" to the "we'll see" ranking here. Colorado signed Yuri Wright and Kenny Crawley, both touted prospects. It's almost certain they will play and perhaps perk up the pass defense.
Colorado: Colorado was terrible against the pass last year. As previously noted: The Buffs were last in the Pac-12 and 115th in the nation in pass-efficiency defense. They yielded 34 touchdown passes, which was six more than any other team. They grabbed just seven interceptions, which tied for last in the conference. Opponents completed nearly 66 percent of their passes. But Ray Polk is a good football player and Parker Orms can be if he stays healthy. Depth is a big question.
Since his days as an assistant coach with the Washington Redskins, Jon Embree had his sights set on an African safari that would provide enough Wild Kingdom moments to last a lifetime. Lions, elephants, rhinos, cheetahs . . . all viewed as up close and personal as personal safety would allow.
Colorado's second-year football coach and wife Natalyn recently returned from a two-week vacation, and after visiting with him earlier this week in his office I left with a strong impression that even while glimpsing the African wildlife was memorable, Embree's head was still filled with thoughts of wildlife closer to home.
"I go through it every July, but I think my family is ready for me to be out of the house," Embree said with a laugh. His wife, he added, "is like, 'Is it starting yet?' Which is all right; that's me. I'm just a little short on patience because it's time to go. It's time to keep this thing moving forward and get it back on course. I think about it every day: are we getting better? It's something that consumes you - at least it does me.
"I guess that's a good thing, depending on who you ask. It's just how I'm wired and how I feel about this place. I just want to win and see these kids win."
He told of leaving the Dal Ward Athletic Center on Monday afternoon and encountering his players returning to the building following a voluntary afternoon workout. Their demeanors told him that "they're enjoying each other. We're becoming a team, we really are. I think these freshmen have done a good job of being seen and not heard. And the guys on the team have done a good job of taking them in and showing them how we do things and why we do things a certain way."
The incoming freshmen, said Embree, "did well in summer school for the most part and understand what our standard is here. It's an adjustment for some, asking them to do more than they've ever done. But the good news is, for a lot of them, they didn't blink.
That's a testament to our upperclassmen for helping them and taking them in." "Against Cal, we had them and didn't finish. You can go through the whole season . . . until really you look at Arizona and Utah, two of the last three games we played. I want that to carryover.