With all that Folsom Field has to offer, running out behind Ralphie, playing over a mile above sea level and an in-your-face crowd, one would think that Colorado would be a difficult place to win on the road.
In the past it certainly has been but recently Folsom Field has lost some of its luster. The students have routinely shown up well after the game has started, if at all. The other fans fill up the majority of the rest of the stadium but there isn’t sell outs like their used to be.
Some of the reasoning behind the diminished home field advantage is due to the struggles that the football team has had recently but that still should not be any excuse for losing to an FCS school at home like the Buffs did earlier this season. The road woes that Colorado experienced were well documented and it was point of emphasis for Jon Embree and staff last year to end that dreadful road losing streak. With all the effort to end the road woes, a home field advantage and a signature home win has been missing.
So in comes Arizona State on Thursday and they bring a prime time ESPN broadcast with them. The Sun Devils are 4-1 on the season and are on the brink of breaking into the top 25. The Buffs seem to play well on Thursday’s winning their previous two nationally televised games against Stanford (1990) and No. 21 West Virginia (2008). If Colorado wants an opportunity to earn a signature home win, this is definitely the time to do it.
Embree has never really experienced the home struggles that Colorado has gone through as a player or a coach and during his weekly press conference he said that the mindset has to change.
“It is something we’ll talk about. It’s something we’ll talk about tonight when I address the team about where our mindset needs to be” Embree said.
The second year head coach even joked about trying to hold a sleepover on Folsom so the players learn what it’s like to protect their own home turf because off season drills inside the stadium hasn’t seemed to work.
“I know basketball coaches (address defending the home court) by having their team spend the night in the gym. But I don’t think I could get away with that, sleeping out there on Ralphie” Embree quipped. “We would need a fundraiser for all those sleeping bags.”
However, Embree knows what needs to change and it all comes down to one thing.
“Being at home, it’s about the place being deafening. You want it so you can’t hear yourself talk to your teammate. The bottom line, the common denominator, was winning.”
Lately, Folsom has been quiet except for the cheering of opposing fans. On Thursday it’s time to get Folsom Field rocking again for all of the right reasons.