Two head coaches not named Dan Hawkins have already been fired: Steve Kragthorpe of Louisville and Al Groh at Virginia. Louisville bought out Kragthorpe for $2.2 million and Virginia paid Al Groh $4.33 million to get him out of Charlottesville. Kragthorpe was fired after just three years at Louisville while Groh went 59-53 with the Cavaliers and guided them to five bowl games. Groh only managed one winning season in his last four, going 9-4 in 2007.
Kragthorpe went 15 - 21 at Louisville. Louisville, a Big East team, is looking at Florida defensive coordinator Charlie Strong, Houston head coach Kevin Sumlin (Colorado and Big 12 ties), former Auburn coach Tommy Tuberville, Texas Tech coac Mike Leach and former Tennessee coach Phil Fulmer.
"So you advocated the firing of Colorado football coach Dan Hawkins, even though he is doing things the right way off the field. Of course, if CU has a team with disciplinary problems and/or low graduation rates, you're the first one to criticize the coach. Consistency isn't your strong suit." Randy, Littleton
Kiz: There's a reason college football coaches are paid $1 million per year. It's a hard job. It's the Big 12 Conference, brother. It's hard to win with players who are gentlemen and scholars. But there's nothing inconsistent in expecting a fine university serious about football and academics to succeed on and off the field. If the Buffaloes were truly serious about football, Hawkins and his 16-33 record would be gone. Coaches are tested on the scoreboard. Hawk has turned in a score of 32.7 percent. No matter how lenient the grading curve or how much extra credit is given for the fine citizenship of players, that's an F.
"The problem with CU football is the snooty city of Boulder. If you were to switch the people who live in Westminster, Thornton, Broomfield or any other city in the metro area with the people of Boulder, CU would be top five in the country as far as fan base and support. People in the great state of Colorado love their Buffs and get chills when Ralphie takes to the field, but people in Boulder couldn't care less." Earl, Ithaca, N.Y.
Kiz: Hey, go easy on the People's Republic. Boulder is one of the best towns in the USA. But does anybody else get the impression that seeing the Buffs beat Nebraska is not high on the priority list of CU president Bruce Benson? Athletic director Mike Bohn has pledged loyalty to Hawkins in tough times. That's admirable. But what happens when an athletic director loves a losing football coach too much? Both men lose their jobs.
Boivin: ASU needs changes on offense
Mark Helfrich on the move again?
They only category the Sun Devils lead now is offensive predictability.
Among the names that have come up in speculation is Mark Helfrich, Oregon's offensive coordinator who previously coached quarterbacks at ASU under Dirk Koetter. Helfrich, 36, is well-regarded in the coaching ranks but it's hard to imagine he would leave the Ducks. He has ties there and is part of a successful program. His head coach, Chip Kelly, also calls plays, so possibly the promise of that role in Tempe could sway Helfrich.
For three years running, I’ve heard players talk during the offseason about how that particular offseason was the best the program has experienced in recent memory. I’m not buying it this time. The Buffs might actually have an outstanding offseason this year, but I think I’ll wait to write about it when we actually have some proof of it. Otherwise, it’s just talk, and if there is one thing I know CU football fans are sick of, it’s bold, brash words with little or nothing backing them up.
Starting up front, they graduate no linemen, offensive or defensive, who played a lot in 2009. Barring attrition, they expect to return every starter on both lines. Some might say that’s not as encouraging as it sounds because CU’s offense and defense ranked toward the bottom of the Big 12 in most statistical categories. But if success begins by controlling the line of scrimmage, the Buffs should be happy. They’ll be loaded with experience and depth up front in 2009. The offense loses its two top tight ends and the fullback, but every other skill position player returns. If his work in practice in 2009 as he redshirted is an indication, transfer receiver Toney Clemons will be one to watch in 2010.
more after the jump...
But there are some reasons to believe the Buffs could be capable of at least getting to a bowl game in 2010 and being competitive in the Big 12 North Division, the lighter side of the Big 12. Quarterback Tyler Hansen will return and figures to be the starter from the beginning of his junior year. The experience he gained this season and his work with the first team in spring and summer practices will help him. He will have to beat out senior Cody Hawkins, redshirt freshman Clark Evans and several true freshmen quarterbacks expected to join the program, but it would be a surprise to see anyone overtake him. We`re guessing CU coaches won`t be thrilled with the idea of starting over at the position with one of the younger players in a year in which their jobs will once again be on the line.
Three redshirt freshmen to watch LB Derrick Webb: Former Memphis Whitehaven HS standout could replace Marcus Burton as team's most punishing tackler. CB Deji Olatoye: Ohioan has size (6-2, 185), athleticism (6-4 high jump) and smarts (business major). TE DaVaughn Thornton: Coaches believe the 6-5, 230-pounder from Denver East could develop into CU's next great tight end.
Three goals in spring 1. Get used to new assistant coaches. In addition to former NFL DB Ashley Ambrose being elevated to full-time WR coach, look for at least one other offseason change in the staff. 2. Settle on an O-line. Even in the 12th game, there was some juggling, with backup center Mike Iltis becoming a starting guard. 3. Develop an offense with greater big-play capability.