The countdown timer on the left side of the page is depressing: 99 days until Fall Ball. Don't worry, we have tons of things to talk about like position by position reviews from spring ball, possible football 101 discussions, opponent by opponent reviews of how their spring went, recruiting coverage (yes, we are going to start making calls for interviews soon), and a few other features that will bridge the gap. And, as always, we will be bringing you Buff Bites.
Tim Griffin of ESPN has a nice little recap of the Buffs' spring session with an article titled: Colorado Finishes Spring Practice Shrouded by Questions. Griffin also makes the point that most of the teams in the Big 12 North are "shrouded by questions" and I love that somebody finally said that for all the hoopla around Nebraska this offseason, they still aren't bullet proof:
For all of the excitement at Nebraska, the Cornhuskers still will be counting on a quarterback who has never started a Division I game, throwing to two new wide receivers. Kansas has the most returning offensive talent but has to rebuild its defensive core after losing three starting linebackers. And the Jayhawks have that pesky South Division crossover schedule that features games against Texas, Oklahoma and Texas Tech.
Defending two-time title game participant Missouri has two new coordinators and must replace the most productive quarterback, wide receiver and tight end in its history. The Tigers also lose a first-round NFL draft pick at defensive tackle, a second-round NFL draft pick at strong safety who was the glue of their defense and their top pass-rushing defensive end.
But yes, there are a few questions that CU has yet to answer, the typical stuff we have been talking about for a while now, are featured in Griffin's article: quarterback, defensive line and wide receiver. I would also add special teams to the argument even though Aric Goodman showed well in the kicking department at the spring game.
But Griffin had tons of praise for the linebackers, offensive line and the running backs. And he also states that the schedule sets up favorably for the Buffs with the probable toughest opponents in the Big 12 North coming to Boulder:
And here's one more reason to like Colorado's chances a little bit more. Their games against Nebraska, Kansas and Missouri all will be played in Boulder. That edge playing in the high altitude at Folsom Field might be enough to boost the Buffaloes into North Division title contention for the first time in Hawkins' coaching tenure there -- despite all of the spring questions.
Kyle Ringo had an interesting little statement from his Monday night chat around Hawkins and the CU program announcing that Helfrich would be interviewing for a job rather than saying "no comment" and letting it play out behind the scenes:
I do see it as very odd that his interview would be announced on the CU site. CU is trying to beef up its coverage of its teams, and I think that played a part in it, though they horribly buried the lead on that one. I think coach Hawkins is getting a little too obsessed with trying to manage everything that is written and said about his program, and he was trying to defuse a situation before it flamed up on message boards and whatnot. It will be interesting to see how they handle these sorts of announcements in the future.
Here is a list of draft picks by school in the Big 12. Colorado, of course, had one lonely pick, Baylor 1, CSU 1, Kansas State 1, Missouri 6, Nebraska 3, Oklahoma 5, Oklahoma St 1, Texas 4, Texas A&M 2, Texas Tech 4. Total: 28. The Big 12 had seven picked in the first round, which broke their 2003 record.
CUBuffs.com has a nice story about all the Buffs involved in the NFL draft/free agency this past weekend. Patrick Ridgell of the Longmont Times says that the Packers like Brad Jones' versatility. He can lineup every where and in a 3 - 4 scheme, that is never a bad thing.
CU athletic director Mike Bohn and CSU counterpart Paul Kowalczyk insist they are still talking about the future of their series.
Translation: The 2010 date in Fort Collins isn't written in stone.
Is John Henderson of the Denver Post the most off-topic, who cares, agenda driven writer in the history of mankind? Whether it is out of the blue articles about CU's off-the-field issues in the middle of recruiting season when the Buffs hadn't had an off-the-field incident in more than six months or this worthless piece on UCLA's and Rick Neuheisel's recruiting...you're about six months too late on everything.
The CU men's golf team is tied for first in the Big 12 championships. The team is led by Derek Tolan, who currently shares the overall individual lead. The women's golf team also qualified for the NCAA regionals.
Bring on the Cats, the Kansas State blog on SBNation, has an interesting article on the South division's dominance over the Big 12 but they think that it's not time to shake up the conferences.
Here are the rest of the Pac 10/Big 12 Hardwood Series matchups. The Kansas vs. UCLA game is the headliner. The Daily Camera has an interview with G Cory Higgins, third team All-Big 12 player for Buffs. The main question was around Higgins' future plans and whether he would depart for greener pastures. All Buff fans breathed a sigh of relief after Higgins said he would remain a Buff and not transfer.