It’s been rough times for the Colorado football program and this year has probably been one of their worst teams in program history. How bad is it you ask? Well, after their 70-14 loss to Oregon this past week, they secured their seventh straight losing season as they now sit at 1-7 with no hopes of turning things around.
You would have to go way back to 2005 to find their last winning season when they finished 7-6 and even then they lost their final four games of the season including a 19-10 Champs Sports Bowl loss to Clemson. Their last bowl game appearance was in 2007 when they lost to Alabama 30-24 to fall to 6-7. So even when they went to a bowl game it was still considered a losing season but since then there’s no tip-toeing around the fact that Colorado just isn’t very good.
Dan Hawkins was hired in 2006 and he was supposed to take Colorado to even greater heights than Gary Barnett did but it didn’t really work out that way. It was just the opposite in fact. In his coaching debut he fell flat on his face losing to FCS Montana State and he didn’t get his first win until week seven of that season. Hawkins did take the Buffs to a bowl game in his second season but it never translated into more than that one winning season.
After the Hawkins experiment failed, he went 19-39 during his time in Boulder, Colorado brought in one of their own to try and turn things around. Jon Embree became the next head coach but it has been a very rough start for the former Buffs tight end. In his first season, also Colorado’s first season in the Pac 12, he went 3-10 but was able to do something that Hawkins wasn’t able to do much and that was win on the road. Embree’s team broke the dreadful four year road losing streak when they beat Utah in Salt Lake to finish last season.
Their play down the stretch, winning two of their final three games, provided some optimism heading into the start of this season but that quickly faded. Colorado lost their first three games in the easiest part of their schedule and were lucky to beat Washington State on the road for their only win of the season. In their games after the first win they have not been very competitive as they’ve been blown out by four straight Pac 12 opponents.
A lot of experts and college football pundits around the country have dubbed Colorado as the worst Division I football program in the country. I don’t think Colorado quite deserves that distinctive title but it hasn’t been pretty and it’s understandable why people would think that.
They’re young and over-matched right now. The talent level isn’t where it needs to be and it shows week in, week out. Even Embree himself said in his weekly press conference this past Tuesday that the Buffs are talented but not talented enough at this point.
How can Colorado turn it around? They just have to keep grinding and believe in what the coaches are preaching. Even if outsiders don’t believe Embree and Co. can get it done the last thing that needs to happen is the players giving up on their coach. Once a coach loses his players there’s nothing else that can be done to turn the program around besides getting a new coach.
Grinding and believing can only get the team so far and if things don’t turn around soon there will be a new head man in Boulder that will try and get this once proud program back to where it was.