Mike MacIntyre is entering his third season as head coach at the University of Colorado. He was named the 25th head football coach in the school’s history on December 10, 2012, after leading San Jose State to its first 10-win season in 25 years.
MacIntyre, 50, is 6-18 in two seasons at Colorado, but that doesn’t reflect the strides the program has made, especially offense, as his second Buffalo team set over 100 offensive records and started to close the gap in talent and performance with their Pac-12 brethren despite a 2-10 record in 2014.
In his first year in Boulder (2013), he guided the Buffaloes to a 4-8 record, matching the number of wins in the program for the previous two seasons. There was measured improvement across the board, as evidenced by the team improving in 29 major statistical categories despite playing the nation’s seventh toughest schedule, which included five 10-win teams.
With a 41-27 win over Colorado State in the ’13 season opener, he became just the second head coach since 1932 at Colorado to win his first game, joining Rick Neuheisel in 1995 as the only pair to do so among the 15 different men to lead the program in that time frame.
He also had to face the daunting task of rallying his team after a devastating flood hit Boulder, forcing the cancellation of a game, which led to two consecutive bye weeks after the Buffs started out 2-0.
The team improved in 29 major statistical categories, in most cases rather dramatically, and set a record for the fewest fumbles in a season with just 14 while reducing penalties dramatically (ending the season with just 10 over the final four games, a 50-year program low). His second CU team broke that fumbles mark with just 12.
He coached San Jose State to a 10-2 record in 2012, with a final regular season ranking of No. 24 in the Associated Press and USA Today/ESPN Coaches polls as well as in the final BCS Standings. The Spartans earned a berth in the Military Bowl where it defeated Bowling Green, 29-20, and finished No. 21 in the national polls (the win, per NCAA policy, is not credited to him since he did not coach SJSU in the bowl).
For his accomplishments at San Jose, he was the recipient of the 2012 Fellowship of Christian Athletes National Coach of the Year. The award is presented to a coach who exemplifies Christian principles and who is involved in the FCA, in addition to success and performance of that coach’s team.
He assumed the SJSU position in December 2009, compiling a 16-21 record with the Spartans; he took over a team that had gone 2-10 in 2009, but began instilling a different culture despite a 1-12 record his first season in San Jose. His second Spartan team went 5-7, but closed the year with thrilling wins over Navy and Fresno State. His SJSU teams thus won 12 of his last 14 games there.
San Jose State’s most impressive wins in his final year there came over San Diego State, Navy, BYU and Louisiana Tech, teams that otherwise combined to go 30-12 in 2012. Tech in particular was an offensive powerhouse (led the nation in scoring, second in total offense and fourth in passing), but their coaches felt MacIntyre and his staff put together the best plan to disrupt its high-octane offense of any of its opponents, including Texas A&M. The only losses were to Stanford (20-17 in the season opener, as the Cardinal won on a fourth quarter field goal) and to Utah State.
The 2012 season under MacIntyre is one of the best in San Jose State’s nearly 120-year football history. In recording their first 10-win season since 1987, the Spartans did it with a highly-productive offense that scored 423 points, a defense that ranked among the national leaders in many statistical categories and reliable special teams.
His third Spartan team saw a school-record 16 SJSU players earn All-Western Athletic Conference honors, which came in a year that 36 school and conference records either were tied or broken.
MacIntyre's San Jose State teams performed in the classroom as well. In 2011, the school had a record number of Academic All-WAC team members – 13 – while defensive end Travis Johnson became the Spartans' first player in 30 years to get Academic All-America recognition.
In addition, San Jose State's Academic Progress Rate (APR) score was 981, second best in the WAC.
Before his 2010 head coaching debut, MacIntyre instituted a comprehensive recruiting plan and initiated a “Summer Bridge” program for his first recruiting class to provide his newcomers a smooth transition into life as a college football player (he installed the same program at Colorado). Facing five nationally-ranked teams early in the season, the Spartans rebuilt themselves repeatedly, and were positioned late for victory in four of their final five games before finishing with a 1-12 record.
Under MacIntyre, the 2011 Spartans produced the fourth-best turnaround in their football history with a 4˝-game improvement, exhibiting resiliency and resourcefulness to find a winning way: four of the team's five wins came in the game’s final minute. The opportunistic Spartans were the co-national leaders with 20 fumble recoveries, tied for fourth in turnovers gained (33), were disciplined as the second least penalized team in the Football Bowl Subdivision and ranked in the top 25 in passing offense (23rd) for the first time in eight years.
After the season, San Jose State was so pleased with the direction of the program that they extended MacIntyre’s contract through 2017.
A veteran coach of 23 seasons, MacIntyre arrived at San Jose State after two years as the defensive coordinator at Duke University, where he was reunited with head coach David Cutcliffe from earlier in his coaching days. Those Blue Devil defenses were among Duke's best statistically over a 20-year span, and in 2009, Duke's five wins were the most in a season by the Blue Devils since 1994. The American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) named him its 2009 FBS Assistant Coach of the Year.
Prior to returning to college ball, MacIntyre spent five seasons in the National Football League with the New York Jets (2007) and Dallas Cowboys (2003-06) coaching defensive backs. Working for legendary coach Bill Parcells, the Cowboys returned to the NFL playoffs in 2003 and again in 2006 after missing out on postseason competition during the 2000 through 2002 seasons.
MacIntyre has coached on both sides of the ball, spending four years at Ole Miss (1999-2002) where he started as the wide receivers coach for two seasons and the defensive secondary coach in his final two years. The Rebels posted a 29-19 record in that time with bowl appearances in the 1999 and 2002 Independence Bowls and the 2000 Music City Bowl. The 2001 Rebels ranked fifth nationally in pass defense, allowing just 161.3 yards per game.
At Mississippi, among his recruits were two high profile student-athletes that one could sign to letters-of-intent, quarterback Eli Manning and linebacker Patrick Willis. And along his coaching trail, he has mentored many current and former NFL players including recently retired former Dallas and Cincinnati safety Roy Williams, a five-time Pro Bowl player. At Dallas, he also tutored Terrence Newman, the former Kansas State cornerback who longtime CU fans certainly remember.
He began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at the University of Georgia, working two years (1990-91) in that capacity. He then coached one year as the defensive coordinator at Davidson (1992), four years at Tennessee Martin (1993-96) and two seasons at Temple (1997-98); while with the Owls, he coached under former CU assistant coach Ron Dickerson and then Bobby Wallace, and in ’98 helped coach Temple to a 28-24 upset of No. 14 Virginia Tech. He then joined Cutcliffe’s staff at Ole Miss the following season.
A 1989 graduate of Georgia Tech, he lettered twice (1987-88) at free safety and punt returner for legendary head coach Bobby Ross. Prior to becoming a Yellow Jacket, MacIntyre played two seasons (1984-85) at Vanderbilt for his father, George, the head coach of the Commodores from 1979-85. The elder MacIntyre was the national coach of the year in 1982 when Vandy beat Alabama on its way to an 8-4 record.
MacIntyre earned a bachelor's degree in Business Management from Georgia Tech and his master's in Education with an emphasis on Sports Management from Georgia in 1991.
He originally agreed to a five-year deal with an annual salary of $2 million plus incentives (January 1, 2013 through December 31, 2017); in February 2014, CU’s Board of Regents approved a one-year extension through the end of 2018.
He was born George Michael MacIntyre on March 14, 1965, in Miami, Fla., and is married to the former Trisha Rowan; the couple has three children, Jennifer, Jay and Jonston; Jay is a redshirt freshman wide receiver on the CU football team. As previously stated, he is very active with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes as well as being an AFCA/Jason Foundation Ambassador, assisting the organization in spreading awareness of the problem of youth suicide.