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Blog Entry

Barnett questions Colorado's commitment

Posted on: November 11, 2010 1:38 pm
 
Posted by Tom Fornelli

Gary Barnett first burst on the coaching scene when he led Northwestern to the Rose Bowl after winning the Big Ten in 1995, and then left the program a few years later to take over at Colorado.   While in Boulder, Barnett's Buffaloes won the Big 12 in 2001 and won the Big 12 North four times in his seven seasons, even though they only went 34-22 in conference play.

So Barnett has a pretty good idea of what it takes to win in Boulder, and how hard of a task that is.  He was on ESPN 1600 in Denver on Thursday to talk about coaching at Colorado, and he didn't really try to temper his feelings about the situation.

“There’s a disconnect between what it takes to compete at that level and what’s being done," Barnett said when asked about the difference between the expectations at Colorado, and the commitment the school puts into the football program. "I think what happens is nationally, on the outside, people perceive CU and Boulder to be like it is in Oklahoma, like it is in Nebraska, like it is in places where we have defeated programs and played for National Championships and played for league championships. And in reality, we’ve scratched along and found a way to be competitive on those levels without having that same sort of culture and environment that other people have. And as long as that culture and environment doesn’t change and remains the same, then it’s going to be a constant scratch and claw.

"Yeah, there’s a disconnect between those that want and what the university is willing to do. And as long as it stays that way, there’s going to be this constant set of expectations that are unrealistic for any coach that goes in there. And that’s what’s really hard – on the outside the expectations are one thing, on the inside the expectations are something else. But you only hear the ones on the outside, and those end up being negative when the job gets harder to do and more complicated to do than you can perform or accomplish.”

Barnett then went on to give an example of the school's commitment, particularly when it comes to putting a coaching staff together, and trying to keep it together.

“Well it’s not challenging getting those coaches here, but once they get here and realize the expectations that are put upon them and the resources that they actually have, and then they’re on a month-to-month contract…they’re not even on a year-to-year contract, they’re on a month-to-month…so they have absolutely no security.

"And then what happens is they get persuaded to go to other places with two and three year contracts. It just makes it difficult to maintain a staff. It’s not hard to get them there, it’s hard to maintain it once they’re there and realize the complications of the job there.”

In other words, you're expected to win at Colorado, and the school expects you to win, but the school doesn't do much to help you do it.  These are words that any head coach who is considering taking over at Colorado should probably want to consider before making any commitment to the school.

I mean, seriously, month-to-month contracts?  It's like they're hiring freelance coaches.

Obviously, if what Barnett said is true, then Colorado needs to make a lot of changes if it wants to contend in the newly formed Pac-12 next season.
Comments

Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: November 27, 2010 8:27 am
 

Barnett questions Colorado's commitment

Gators73

One of the most intelligent and acurate posts I have ever read on Sportsline. I'm also a Florida grad so I am impressed with gators 73 post and objectivity. I am an alumnus of CU (pre-grad) and stopped all my financial contributions to the University because of all the points listed by gators 73. The culture of the administration will never allow the CU program to win a national championship. It's much easier to put on your Birkenstocks, hug some trees, play with ganja, and hypothesize how CU academics make the world a better place. Ah, utopia in Boulder....BuffaloRx Class of 95/GatorRx Class of 09



Since: Nov 12, 2010
Posted on: November 12, 2010 1:59 pm
 

Barnett questions Colorado's commitment

Well obviously you haven't seen TCU's facilities....nothing to be ashamed of and I really don't think Gary Patterson is ready to go BACKWARDS in his coaching career by thinking about an offer from Colorado.





Since: Nov 12, 2010
Posted on: November 12, 2010 12:19 pm
 

Barnett questions Colorado's commitment

Tj,
You've obviously never been to Boulder. As an OU grad living in Denver, the facilities in Boulder are worse than the Intramural ones in Norman. CU's basketball gym is a crap-shoot. My high school gym puts it to shame. As for fan numbers, I believe Folsom Field only holds about 54k, and it's only about 70% full on game days... As for Boise and TCU staff wanting to go to Boulder, the area and city of Boulder by far surpasses their current situation, but when it comes to job security, success, and facilities.. there's no question that they are in a better situation where they are at now. What coach wouldn't want job security for life? You should probably know what you are talking about before you post comments.



Since: Nov 6, 2006
Posted on: November 12, 2010 10:48 am
 

Barnett questions Colorado's commitment

boo hoo....cry me a river.....I bet the staff at Boise State or TCU would KILL for the Colorado facilities, $$$, and fan numbers.  I'm not buying that it is impossible to win there.



Since: Aug 22, 2006
Posted on: November 11, 2010 10:11 pm
 

Barnett questions Colorado's commitment

Gary's right about many issues, particularly the money and to be honest the level of support from some members of the University.  However he should know that the State changed the law to allow a limited number of multi-year contracts for State employees and those were specifically designed for hiring coaches. Hawkins has one which is why the University is on the hook for 1.8 million for his buyout. So does the offensive coordinator and the basketball coach. There are challenges at CU but it is not all bad. Gary left here under pretty tough circumstances, some of which were self inflicted. His viewpoint has merit but it is also colored by his biases and anger at how he was treated.

That is all true, however, it doesn't negate the hostile atmosphere of the radical leftwingnut, PC university community toward athletics in general, and football in particular.  In the minds of many academic elitists, athletics don't belong at an academic institution.  The culture is that academia and athletics are mutually exclusive- in fact may be detrimental to one another.  Now, I believe that academic standards should be respected and student- athletes should really be student- athletes.  Contrasting the culture with those at winning institutions where both academics and athletics are respected and embraced is a valid challenge.  CU Boulder does not honestly embrace both.  Outside the university, in Boulder county, there is a radical feminist DA who poisoned and politically charged the atmosphere in her office and in the statewide community by subjecting the university, athletic program, and administration to a protracted and ridiculous witchhunt for overt or latent sexism.  Scurrilous and unsubstantiated charges were excruciatingly dissected in public and in the press and mixed with a few legitimate charges.  The guilty and innocent were lumped together and the great irreparable harm done to the CU's reputation.  Ridiculous restrictions were placed on recruiting that has put them at a tremendous disadvantage and the talent level on the field has noticeably fallen off. 

I have no interest in CU other than as a resident of Colorado.  I can only imagine how I would beel if it were my school they were crucifying and whose reputation they were slandering. 



Since: Feb 5, 2007
Posted on: November 11, 2010 4:47 pm
 

Barnett questions Colorado's commitment

Katie was a girl, not only was she a girl, but she was TERRIBLE



Since: Nov 11, 2010
Posted on: November 11, 2010 3:45 pm
 

Barnett questions Colorado's commitment

Gary's right about many issues, particularly the money and to be honest the level of support from some members of the University.  However he should know that the State changed the law to allow a limited number of multi-year contracts for State employees and those were specifically designed for hiring coaches. Hawkins has one which is why the University is on the hook for 1.8 million for his buyout. So does the offensive coordinator and the basketball coach. There are challenges at CU but it is not all bad. Gary left here under pretty tough circumstances, some of which were self inflicted. His viewpoint has merit but it is also colored by his biases and anger at how he was treated. 


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