Recruiting the State of Texas: Colorado Buffaloes

Eric Nahlin

Recruiting Editor
Staff member
Dec 19, 2011
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Thoreau'd on Walden
In my view, any fun college town has the chance to field a good football program. Obviously that requires a strong football mind with a forward vision atop the program's organizational chart. Part of that vision is assembling a solid and complementary staff. Within that staff should be people who can sell the town in question, and the program, to recruits far and wide.

Most reading here are plenty old enough to remember good, and sometimes great football being played in Boulder, Colorado, throughout the late 80's to mid-2000's. Since 2006, the school in topographic favor has been on a walk in the desert.

Dan McCarney was barely qualified to coach intramurals, brother, and John Embree went 4-21 in his two seasons. The locals would have been more pleased with 4:20.

This led to the hiring of Mike MacIntyre in 2013. MacIntyre orchestrated one of the great turnarounds nobody ever heard of when he took San Jose State from 1-12 in his first year to 10-2 in his third. Yet another Silicon Valley start-up success story led to more opportunity.

Things haven't turned around nearly as quickly in Boulder, but with Saturday's win on the road over the Oregon Ducks, and current record of 3-1--with that one loss occurring in Ann Arbor (the game was in doubt heading into the 4th quarter)--Colorado is alas trending upward.

Just like that, college town, plus football man with a vision equals a restoration to respectability, if not prominence.

California will always be Colorado's primary recruiting territory. This goes back to the halcyon days of Bill McCartney and probably even before that. But with so many predators in California, and more snowboarders than football prospects in-state, the CU staff is wise to delve into Texas. In recruiting, success begets success. In 2017, Colorado is experiencing success within the hyper-competitive state of Texas with one recruit helping attain the next.

Even after leaving the Big 12, Colorado still landed a player here and a player there from the Lone Star State. In fact, back-up quarterback Steven Montez led the Buffs to victory over the Ducks. He hails from El Paso. But it wasn't until this current cycle when Colorado restored focus within the state and began to establish a buzz on the recruiting trail.

So what changed?

In many ways Darrin Chiaverini is the perfect encapsulation of Colorado football: he's from Southern California; he had a memorable college career for the Buffaloes; he coached collegiately in the state of Texas the last two years at Tech.

Adding Chiaverini as a Swiss Army coach was a master-stroke from MacIntyre. Chiaverini's reputation in Texas is stellar with high school coaches I talk to, and his recruiting prowess speaks for itself. If he was nothing more than a recruiter he'd more than pay for himself.

Evidence of his ability are his fingerprints being on five verbally committed Texas recruits. These five represent five of the Buff's 8 most highly rated prospects.

Every year Texas puts out under-the-radar players who go OOS and end up studs and sometimes even drafted. Often they end up at Utah or Boise State. This year they're ending up in Boulder too.

Take a look:

WR Laviska Shenault, Desoto:
A flat football player in the Anquan Boldin mold. He has a defensive mentality but offensive skill. He could play a number of positions in college, but inside receiver will probably be his home.

WR Jaylon Jackson, Cedar Hill: Injuries have robbed Jackson of much of his high school career but he was the most electric player in the state championship game his sophomore year and that field was loaded with talent. Colorado as done right by sticking with Jackson's commitment despite his knee injury last spring. Their loyalty will be rewarded.

OL Grant Polley, Denton:
Polley only lacks a bit of size but he has top shelf athleticism. He could land anywhere across the line depending on how big he gets, but his feet, agility, and flexibility will get him on the field as soon as he's physically ready. A total steal.

DB Chris Miller, Denton: Multi-faceted athlete who plays both sides of the ball in high school but probably projects best to corner or even safety. There's some twitch and closing speed to work with here.

RB Alex Fontenot, George Ranch: A well balanced running back with shiftiness, quickness, and speed. Fontenot should excel outside the tackles where his cutting ability will come into play.

OL Will Sherman, Allen:
Yet another steal. Sherman plays tackle in high school but I envision a bright future at guard. I like his base and ability to slide his feet. There's also plenty of movement skill to feature him on the pull.

With one-third of its commits hailing from Texas, Colorado is asserting itself as surprising foothold in Texas. The more they win, the more they'll win, on and off the field, as success begets success.
 

Ktown777

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Huge fan of MacIntyre. Also, I couldn't name very many cities I'd rather spend my early 20's in than Boulder
 

Schulz

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Colorado also had a GA from DeSoto, Patrick Williams. He played WR for them several years ago. Looks like he joined the Ravens in player personnel this summer.
 

junglerules

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Feb 23, 2012
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Texas
Dan Hawkins, brother.
My favorite Dan Hawkins quote of all time here....

"If we had knelt on the ball at the end of the game, wouldn't that have been the end of the game?" said Broncos coach Dan Hawkins. "Yeah, it would have been. But Gandhi didn't take a knee, Martin Luther King didn't take a knee,Thomas Edison didn't take a knee, and I sure as hell am not going to take a knee."
 
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BobInHouston

Member Who Talks (A Lot!)
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My favorite Dan Hawkins quote of all time here....

"If we had knelt on the ball at the end of the game, wouldn't that have been the end of the game?" said Broncos coach Dan Hawkins. "Yeah, it would have been. But Gandhi didn't take a knee, Martin Luther King didn't take a knee,Thomas Edison didn't take a knee, and I sure as hell am not going to take a knee."
How did I miss this? It's amazingly horrible.
 
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