CO Sports Chick

Musings on Colorado sports from a female perspective

Archive for the ‘CU’ Category

Popping the Top in the Foam Dome

Posted by The Minkster on February 16, 2011

If you haven’t caught a CU men’s basketball game yet this year you might want to check that off your list before the Big 12 tournament tips off.  The Buffs are in the middle of the pack and seeding will come down to the last weekend of match-ups, but that isn’t the story.  The 2010-11 version of our Buffaloes is undersized and doesn’t have much experience off the bench, but they line up toe-to-toe in each game with the expectation of winning.  That’s a huge step in the right direction. 

Big kudos go out to Tad Boyle in finally moving the men’s basketball team in a new direction.  He has a team with lanky forwards hitting the boards while the only true center is a freshman coming off the bench.  When the scoring tandem of Higgins and Burks are having an off night other guys step up and throw down needed baskets.  It isn’t just about playing tough D anymore, but playing a complete game on both ends of the floor which translates to wins on the road.  Something CU fans aren’t used to seeing.

I’m excited about Boyle’s first recruiting class next year and the team getting another 12 months to become better students of the game of basketball.  At times this year it seemed that the guys were either tired or didn’t understand what needed to be done at key points in the game.  Knowing when to press, when to push the ball up the floor, how to take a quick shot or hold the ball has been the downfall of this team at times, but you can see improvements in their overall basketball IQ.  There is excitement under the Flatirons and I’m hoping that Burks will come back for his junior year to be part of the excitement.

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Throwback Time in Foam Dome

Posted by The Minkster on January 25, 2011

Were you able to catch the CU men’s basketball team last week on the road?  The first stop was in Lincoln followed by a Saturday afternoon brawl in Norman after big upsets of ranked Mizzou and K-State.  Both road stops were tough losses to teams that CU would probably could beat at home.  This is Boyle’s first Big 12 rodeo, so I can understand he wasn’t sure how to deal with the refs swallowing the whistles for the black shirts on the road.  CU didn’t see the charity stripe in the first half of the Nebraska game, which seems a bit odd for a team that was one of the best teams in the country in free throw attempts and percentage made. 

Ref holding ball

Big 12 Refs Tough on the Road

The Buffs are small, so their game is driving to the hoop and drawing fouls which opens up the outside shooters.  When you take the ability to get fouls away it’s frustrating for a club that doesn’t have the personnel to bang inside and can’t get good looks from the perimeter.  In both games you could see the frustration and lapses in concentration overcoming this shiny new Buffs team.  That’s something that Boyle will have to learn how to coach through, adjust the game plan and keep the guys focused.  I’m guessing it won’t get much better in the new Pac-12, so this is good practice.

Tonight provides an opportunity to prove the melt downs in those mid-western watering holes weren’t because the horses were tired, but shenanigans by the Cartwrights in stripes (that’s a Bonanza reference for you youngsters out there).  Kansas comes into Coors Events Center ranked #6 after an upset by Texas over the weekend to drop the Big 12 powerhouse to 18-1 overall.  It’s a little eerie that the last time CU beat KU at home the Jayhawks were ranked #6.  If one team gets hot in the second half then it will probably be a blowout, otherwise these two match-up well and it should be a great game.  For the first time in a long time there should be more black and gold in the building than blue.  The Buffs need this win to have a shot at getting an invitation to the Big Dance in March, so hopefully they have shaken off that road trip and are ready to bring it tonight!

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Denver Sports More Fun Off The Field

Posted by The Minkster on December 8, 2010

Rox fan

It's a happy winter for Rox fans

It used to be about this time of year I’m deciding if I can work out a trip to watch the Buffs in their bowl game, anxious about whether the Broncos can win the West or have to go to the playoffs as a Wild Card, and reading that the Rockies did nothing at the Winter Meetings.  Times sure have changed!  Instead I’m contemplating who will be captaining the HindenBUFF and BRONCOtania in the near future while watching the Rockos wheel and deal their way through the offseason.  Have I been beamed into a parallel dimension.

At this point we know it will be an all-star Buffaloes alum coaching staff undertaking the arduous task of leading a beleaguered gridiron team into the Pac-10/12 next fall.  I don’t know if it will work – heck I thought Hawk was a good hire – but it has to be better than the last regime.  Even if these guys that bleed black and gold don’t win big I can’t see the haters digging the fangs in too deep on one of their own. 

Did you see the firing of McKid coming, because I sure didn’t?  I figured he might be gone after this season or Bowlen would keep him on another year figuring a lockout was a high probability relieving the Broncos of carrying three head coaches on the payroll.  Didn’t figure Little Hoodie would be packing up his office this week!    This will certainly be an interesting hire and, despite some naysayers, Dove Valley is still a coveted office in which to hang glory days pictures.

What about those Rockies!  Signing Tulo to a Heltonesque contract was a great move and keeping the #2 pitcher De La Rosa was impressive.  They still need another bat, but it looks like the guys in purple ties are mixing and mingling instead of watching pay-per-view in their hotel rooms at the Winter Meetings.  The Coors Field crew is even going after Michael Young currently under contract with the Rangers.  It’s crazy, but I actually have confidence that the Rox will sign a bat and a safety net for the Iannetta Project.  Ho ho ho, I wish us a merry Christmas Denver fans.

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Buffs Need to Lay Down Some Payback

Posted by The Minkster on October 15, 2010

Do you recall this past summer when college AD’s were once again spinning the Big Wheel to get into the conference Showcase Showdown?  The Fuskers jumped first into the Big Ten (that was 11 and now 12 members strong), which left the 11 players in the Big 12 scrambling as rumors started flying about CU bolting to the Pac 10.  For awhile there was talk of combining the Pac 10 and Big 12 into some supernova conference, but when it became clear to Texas and Oklahoma they would have to take the same cut from the till as all the other teams they took their toys and went home.  While all these dust devils were swirling around down south the Baylor supporters saw the writing on the wall and figured they would be one of the teams not invited to the left-hand coast conference, so they tried to go all “39 Steps” on the Pac 10 by handcuffing the school to the Longhorns while minimizing CU athletics. 

Obviously getting the governor of Texas involved didn’t produce the intended outcome, but it looks like it probably worked out the best for everyone anyway.  Of course, taking the high road isn’t very much fun if you can settle the score on the gridiron or hardwood.  This will probably be the last time the Bears visit the heathen hamlet of Boulder, so the Buffs need to step up and throw the hammer down on these boys!  I know the secondary is depleted, but the offense should be able to play ball control and keep it out of the hands of Robert Griffin who can sling it and run it.  The dude finished third in the 400 meter hurdles at the 2008 NCAA Outdoor Championships!  The Buffs need to keep this guy in the pocket and hope the young backs can make some plays.  In the end, it will be another beautiful fall day in Colorado watching the sun go down over the Flatirons, and win or lose we’ll never have to go back to Waco.

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Every Team Needs a Little Luck

Posted by The Minkster on October 4, 2010

It was a big weekend for Colorado football fans with CU, Air Force and the Broncos posting big wins.  They were all close, hard-fought games and the victors deserved the prized “W” earned after the final whistle.  No sports writer/blogger/sportscaster can take away a win, but he/she can certainly belittle the team and downplay the effort.  What is with everyone ripping our Colorado boys because they didn’t crush the opponent by 50 points?

The Buffs made some mistakes at Folsom Field, but so did the Dawgs.  CU made fewer mistakes and made plays when needed in order to walk off the field as a winner.  The defense was looking for UGA’s staple running play figuring they would use it to run down the clock at the end of the game and they had the right guy in the right spot to make a play when it counted.  Let’s enjoy a big win against a formidable SEC opponent and relish a fun trip down memory lane with visits from the 1990 championship team for one more week.

I thought the scoreboard at the Air Force Academy would look more like a slot machine this weekend with Navy in town but defense ruled the day.  Not only did the Zoomies keep the Midshipmen out of the end zone, but ended a 15 game winning streak by the Middies over its fellow academy brethren.  I’m sure the brisk thin air in the Springs felt thick and heavy to Air Force on Saturday given that this year’s team had the best chance of winning this match-up since the seniors have donned the uniforms.  Again it wasn’t pretty, but the coaches had Jamal Cooks working on his punt blocking leap this year and it paid off big on Saturday.  Time to bring that Commander-in-Chief’s trophy back out to the West where it belongs.

On Sunday there was more second guessing of McKid’s play calling, but again the Broncos made plays when it counted and earned a win.  I’m not saying there weren’t some ugly parts to the game (e.g., special teams and running game), but the Titans didn’t exactly burn up the field either.  Instead of looking at the negatives I’m thinking how good this team could be if they could just get the running game going.  If Orton can post Kurt Warner like numbers for the rest of the season then the Broncos are in position to win the West.  Everyone and their grandmothers know Denver needs to figure out the red zone and how to create space on running plays, so I’m sure McKid will have his coaches bleary-eyed and caffeinated up in order to improve in those areas.  Again, let’s enjoy a tough win over a good team and start copping a ‘tude about our home teams instead of acting like Philadelphia fans.

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Anybody Out There?

Posted by The Minkster on August 12, 2010

Not sure if anyone is out there still listening, but thought I would try to get back into blogging as we start to gear up for the most wonderful time of the year.  You know, early fall when we have pennant races, college football, tailgating, the end of NFL pre-season and my birthday!  Hope everyone has their draft board together for fantasy football and Favre isn’t in your top 20.  Our draft is the end of August, so we won’t know if Brett will be wearing the purple or not by that time.  Glad QB controversy is focused on the land with 12,000 lakes instead of 12,000 footers this year.

Don’t have any rant to share with you today, but have some catching up to do.  Let’s just tick them off real quick as a lead into the weekend.

  • I don’t have a problem with the Rockies not making a move before the trade deadline.  No need to trade some of our rising stars for a guy that may or may not be able to help the team make the playoffs.  Pitching injuries have hurt, plus various injuries to key hitters (see Tulo, Todd and G-Man) have made it difficult to get a run going.  If we can get guys healthy and key pitchers back in the groove (Rosy, Streeter and Jeffy) the Rox can make another late season run.
  • If McKid has any sense he’ll keep Tebow on the sidelines most of this season so he can watch and learn.  Orton should shine this season in his second year in the system, so I have high expectations for the Broncos – even with Elvis not in the building.
  • How ’bout those Outlaws!  Finishing second and making it to the playoffs in Annapolis next weekend.  Those guys have had a great season and hope you had a chance to watch them.  Let’s bring a trophy home boys!
  • What is it with the Rapids at home?!?  We should be kicking butt and taking names in a sport where you have to run up and down a football field for 90 minutes at altitude!  Anyway, with Casey coming back maybe the good guys can make a nice run right into the playoffs.
  • People are totally disregarding the Buffs in Big 12 football.  I’m okay with that as long as the black and gold are playing for the North championship come Black Friday.  Anything less and the lovable Hawk needs to take a hike.  I like the team he has finally put together – a couple of top corners, 2 experienced QB’s, young but fast backfield led by Speedy and a bunch of good receivers.  This team better score some points and win games.  CSU will go down without a fight on Labor Day weekend…shoulder to shoulder we will fight, fight, fight, fight, fight!

That’s all I got for today and to quote Rome, I’m out!

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Chip Defends Crown

Posted by The Minkster on January 19, 2010

Boulder has an Aspen like celebrity in its midst!  Chip, the CU mascot, successfully defended his title at the 2010 College Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championship this past Friday.  The judging is split into two parts comprised of a video submitted in the fall and live skit performed the following January. 

Chip jammin' at nationals!

Unlike in 2009, Chip entered the January skit competition in first place after the video judging in November.  Being the Big Dog Buffalo that Aubi, Wildcat, Smokey and all the other top mascots were gunning for the pressure was intense for Chip and his handlers.  The team spent winter break creating and perfecting a skit that would not only be more creative than their record-breaking 2009 performance (earning an 11 on a scale of 1-10), but also get the crowd involved and excited.  The result was “Chip’s Dance Party” that featured old school music blasting from a jukebox to an iPod booming current tunes.  By all accounts the entire audience was waving their hands in the air and jammin’ like they just didn’t care. 

The Big 12 was represented well not only by CU, but Oklahoma and Kansas finished in the top 10.  As in football, the SEC had a strong showing with four mascots in the final 10 and Auburn’s Aubie taking second place.  The Big 10 rounded out the field, also with four finalists, lead by third place finisher Goldy Gopher from Minnesota.

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Throwback Days at the Foam Dome

Posted by The Minkster on December 2, 2009

With another painful football season coming to a merciful end, Buffs fans can turn their attention to and actually get excited about the men’s basketball team.  Buzz finally has his guys in place after most of Patton’s recruits bailed because the work ethic and expectations were too much for them to handle.  Coach has these kids wanting to play team ball and buying into the philosophy that has been proven successful in the NBA and at Air Force.  This isn’t going to be another season where CU has a good pre-conference record then gets destroyed.  In case you missed it, these gritty guys played tough at the Maui Invitational without their head coach who was with his seriously ill mother in Chicago.

The Buffs are 5-2  after dropping two heartbreakers in Hawaii then coming home and taking care of business against the San Francisco Dons.  On the Big Island CU had Gonzaga on the ropes the entire game and let them sneak back in during the closing minutes to lose 72-76.  Next up was Arizona which went into overtime but lost 87-91.  They picked up a consolation game against Chaminade, but came away knowing they can play with the big boys.  The Big 12 is brutal this year, but look for this team to pull off some upsets at home.

Higgins vs SF Dons

The 2009-10  Buffs is still young with only one senior, guard Dwight Thorne II, but he’ll get good help from junior Cory Higgins (team leader and top scorer) and freshman Alec Burks.  Still too many freshmen and sophomores to make a run at the Big 12 title, but I love the attitude and hustle this team brings to the table.  It reminds me of the run and gun team of the 1990-91 season that almost took home an NIT championship.  CU is not only bringing back that gritty, wind-sprint style of play but the fashion sense too.  The Buffs will wear the silver home unis for the first time in 19 years, so what can go wrong?

The Buffs head to Oregon this Friday to play OSU in the Big 12-Pac 10 Hardwood Series.  Big 12 play opens in Austin on January 9 followed by Baylor at home on the 12th.  Let’s have the Foam Dome rockin’ like it used to in the early 90’s when Billy Law was running the offense and the seats were filled with gold and black clad fans.  After dropping several gut-wrenching contests to Big 12 foes at home last year, you can be sure the tables are turning and the Buffs will notch some of those in the win column this year.

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Benedict Blue Bombs

Posted by The Minkster on November 9, 2009

Really?! Baby blue?

Really?! Baby blue?

As an alum of the University of Colorado I tend to be a bit biased in my assessment of the young folks walking away from Boulder with a sheepskin in their hands. Yes, I’m an admitted homie. This weekend, however, has shaken my faith in the mental prowess of those graduating from Buffland in the next several years.

A SENIOR (who should know better), started a Facebook blue boycott against the current Buffs football coaching staff.  Taylor Rhode, an

facebook_logo

Facebook tampering

 accounting major, wanted to send a message to CU officials by coaxing students to don baby blue t-shirts to the Texas A and M game in silent protest and to show the similarities of the losing teams that wore similar colored unis in the early 1980’s. While I appreciate the historical knowledge of Buff football, Taylor needed to think outside the Rocky Mountain box – like in the direction of southern California.

Taylor, think about this for a minute. Darrell Scott just left in midseason with the expectation that he will follow his uncle to UCLA and the current Bruins coach is ex-Buffs wunderkind Slick Rick Neuheisel. Do you know the colors that the UCLA Bruins wear? It is BABY BLUE and gold!  Unknowingly you made those that played your little dress-up game look like they support a university that could very well have three guys that dissed the institution you and/or your parents are spending thousands of dollars for you to attend!

After storming the field with the lame baby blues glittering brightly in another beautiful Boulder afternoon, hopefully Taylor and his army felt like the hypocrites they appeared to be on TV.  Try just slapping some corn cobs on your head and hitching up your overalls and call it a day next time.

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Bored Sportswriters Find Story at CU

Posted by The Minkster on November 5, 2009

Scott running for daylightSportswriters and sportscasters that cover the Colorado sports scene are obviously jonzing for some controversy.  The Broncos have started 6-1 to quiet the McKid bashing, the Nuggets are off to their best start as a franchise at 5-0, and the baby Avs lead the NHL in points.  Couple that with the fact no local pro players (e.g., Brandon Marshall and JR Smith) have gotten into any legal trouble recently and these guys are worried their lead stories will be follow-ups to the Buffs cross country team’s disappointing second place finish in the Big 12 Championships!  Oh, but there’s more gold in them there Flatirons.  Darrell Scott just laid a big palet of fodder at their collective doorsteps by quitting the CU football team in the middle of a challenging season. 

The sky is obviously falling on Dan Hawkins and the CU football program because Scott, a back-up running back, has decided to leave Boulder to return to sunny So Cal.  Those who are shocked haven’t been paying attention.  Probably the biggest factor for the five star recruit picking CU over Texas was the fact his uncle, Josh Smith, was a rising star receiver for the Buffs.  After Smith transferred this past summer, and Scott was not only injured but backing up Speedy, it is no surprise the kid bolted the Rocky Mountains.  I’m sure 2 feet of snow in late October along with a 2-6 record didn’t do anything to sway him towards staying.

It certainly isn’t a shot in the arm for this beleaguered football team, but college players are in and out of programs all the time.  Think about the lives of five star recruits – they are hormonal teenagers with huge egos that are blown-up bigger and bigger as major schools tell them how great they are and how each of them will be the star of their respective teams (Can you say Heisman?).  Scott was no different, but the problem was he didn’t see Speedy coming down the tracks.  There were other contributors to Scott’s unhappiness in the People’s Republic. 

  •  The budding star transferred into another L.A. high school for his senior year, so loyalty to a struggling program is not in his repertoire. 
  • Scott was out of shape when he came to CU as a freshman after missing camp because of academics.  That lead to a slow start and probably contributed to his injuries last year.
  • Hagan was hard on Scott when he got here and told him to earn a starting spot by working hard. Don’t think anyone has ever told him he actually had to EARN a starting job.
  • He missed the support of uncle Josh who transferred to UCLA during this past summer to pursue a degree in media arts (he wanted to study film production). 

Sometimes a kid needs a new start, so maybe he’ll be successful on Slick Rick’s sunny campus. Meanwhile, Hawk gets no credit for recruiting Speedy who was getting offers from D2 schools and has been an amazing back especially given the poor O line play.  He gave Speedy a scholarship and gave him a chance to start despite landing Scott who was supposed to follow Salaam onto the Heisman stage.  Giving everyone on the team a fair shake should give you the best opportunity to win.Sumler against Nebraska in 2008

I know the Colorado sports talking heads are twisting the story around to say that it will hurt Hawkins on the recruiting trail, but I disagree.  High school kids want to play in college and with Scott leaving any incoming freshman will have a good shot at eventually starting.  Good luck at winning a national championship at UCLA in the next three years.  CU still has good depth at tailback to finish off 2009 and I would like to see junior Demetrius Sumler get a chance to carry the ball again.  Sometimes divas are best left in Hollywood.

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