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By: CUBuffs.com
Summertime Plati-'Tudes
Release: July 14, 2010
By: David Plati, Associate AD/Sports Information
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David Plati
Welcome to a notes and comment column in its 11th year, penned by CU Associate Athletic Director David Plati, who is wrapping his 26th year as the Buffaloes’ director of sports information.

 

Plati-‘Tudes No. 90 ... The most famous Buff to wear 90? A likely tie between team defensive MVP’s, Darin Schubeck (1986) and Sam Rogers (1993); Schubeck was also the overall team MVP that same season; Marquez Herrod wears it at present ... One of the craziest times during my tenure here with the conference realignment saga that ended for CU on June 11 when we officially accepted an invitation to join the Pacific-10 Conference.  Obviously one of the brightest moments in our athletic history,  it came 30 years to the day when we cut seven sports and several staff positions and all budgets went on austerity on what became known as Black Wednesday (June 11, 1980) ... A lot below on the impending conference switch; enjoy!

 

Trivia Questions

The opening four mind teasers:

CU—Colorado and Utah will go into the Pacific-10 as life-long ski rivals, and will resume a terrific football rivalry that has been dormant since 1962.  While the Buffs and Utes are the only schools who have ski programs, name the current Pac-10 schools that used to sponsor the sport.

Who Am I?—I wore No. 30 and had one the last great careers when Colorado had baseball.  In my junior year, I was 10-4 and had 89 strikeouts in 89 2/3 innings.  I didn’t return for my senior season because I was selected in the draft by the Cincinnati Reds.  My college coach was Irv Brown, and I was the last Buff to play in the major leagues.  Who am I?

Music—Who were the four “double-named” bands that rose to prominence in the 1980’s?

Name That Tune—What song is this lyric passage from: We're up to snuff, we never bluff, we're game for any fuss.
No other gang of college men dare meet us in a muss.

 

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 Quick Hits

For those into details, the official references for our new conference home are either Pacific-10 or Pac-10; no all caps and always use the hyphen (who said you can’t learn anything from P-‘Tudes?!) ... CUBuffs.com had one of its busiest stretches ever during the realignment flurry, with 53,313 unique visitors to the site over the three day period of June 10-12 ... Think I saw a deal where FIFA handed out half a million of those vuvuzelas (a.k.a, annoying yard-long plastic horn); would the NFL pass out 75,000 kazoos before its largest event, the Super Bowl? ... Little Known Fact: actor Jonah Hill (Evan Almighty, Superbad, Get Him To The Greek) attended CU for one semester.  One of the 26-year old’s first roles was the geek in the 40-Year Old Virgin trying to purchase those interesting shoes in the E-bay store.  Hill is his middle name, Feldstein his true last name ...  Congrats to sophomore Emma Coburn for her Big 12 title and NCAA runner-up finish in the steeplechase; with those accomplishments, she was elevated to co-Female Athlete of the Year status with golfer Emily Talley (also a sophomore); the winners are selected in late April with the caveat that they can be joined by an athlete who completes his or her season in May or June ...

Senior Justin Bardgett closed out his career with three straight 76s in the NCAA Southwest Regional, very disappointing to him, though he tied for 49th in a touch 75-man field; when you’re as good as these college kids are, they don’t want to hear, “Well, not even one percent of all those who play golf can record three straight honest 76s” ... Jessica Wallace will join the women’s golfers next year as she is transferring to CU from Pepperdine; as a sophomore this past May, she tied for 21st in the NCAA Championships with a 78-72-68-74—292 (+4) as Pepperdine tied for 14th in the team standings ...  With all the hubbub over the wrong call at first base in the what-would-have been perfect game, I agree baseball should look at limited replay; not the college football kind where every play is supposedly reviewed, but NFL-esque in certain situations and give the managers two challenges a game.  And if you ask me, as an official scorer who already has a television and replay ability, make the official scorers the replay officials.  No reason to create replay staffs at every game that are two or three people deep like in football; we’re already there, and if there are no hit/error rulings, we basically announce the game time and fill out a form ... Florida State is promoting QB Christian Ponder as a Heisman candidate; but back in 2008, he needed a solid running game to defeat the Buffs in Jacksonville, as he completed 10-of-22 passes for 119 yards (1 INT/0 TD), an 81.8 rating ... One-time CU football grad assistant, Bobby Popp, is running for the Michigan State Board of Trustees; he served under the late Sonny Grandelius between 1959-61 ... Check out former Buff fullback Brendan Schaub and his new love, professional mixed martial arts: http://msn.foxsports.com/video/shows/mmathletics (be sure it’s Episode 9) ... What was up with the Anthem at the All-Star Game? Hello, do you know what it’s supposed to sound like? A
nd of course, the crowd cheers when someone can hold a long note; well, guess what—I can hold that 22-second note at the end of Kenny Roger's Love The World Away but you don't see me singing the Anthem at the freakin' Super Bowl ... Larry Zimmer, Jr., in April trekked in Nepal to the Mount Everest Base Camp.  One stop on the trek was in the small village of Periche, where he went into a tea house and saw a CU banner hanging there (photos on right).  As Larry Sr., said to me, “The Buffs are present even in the high Himalayas.”

 

 The Buffs & The Pacific-10 Conference

June 11, 2010: Colorado becomes the 11th member of the Pacific-10 Conference.  Rumors were abound for years, and CU turned down an invitation from the league in late 1994, but 16 years later, the Buffaloes are moving to the conference most feel is the best fit for the program since the days of Byron “Whizzer” White. 

 

Now calls were made by some that CU should join the Mountain West, and that we didn’t belong in the Pac-10 or even the Big 12.  Chalk it up to the far-to-common anti-CU rhetoric spewed by the same anti-CU people; they only get the attention of the anti-CU crowd, they’re not likely changing anyone’s minds.  Nothing against the MWC, and I’ve argued several times it should have received BCS status years ago when the Big East lost Miami, Virginia Tech and Boston College. We have long established roots with most of those schools, but personal opinions aside, do you go from making $8-10 million a year in Big 12 conference distribution to around $4 million in the MWC (and that’s before the expected rise to $15 million-plus once we’re in the Pac-10).       

 

It’s been 62 years since we left the Mountain States Conference, but then-athletic director Harry Carlson had a plan.  He started scheduling the old Big Six schools every chance he could in football, basketball and baseball. He basically pounded at the door of the Missouri Valley brethren for almost two decades, beginning in 1930, until CU was added as the seventh school in 1948; no one else was willing to do that.  Sure we took some lumps, but we also had some nice wins (I guess I can use "we" even though it was 30 years before I was born...).  Some apparently are still upset we made that move, though it happened years before they were born.

 

 Utah: CU’s New Rival?

It remains to be seen if Utah supplants Nebraska as our chief conference rival, but there’s a fierce-though-friendly rivalry between the two in skiing which dates back to the 1950s.  The Utes will be the closest school in our new league, about an hour plane ride and an 8-hour drive via Interstate 80 (the same road that linked us with the Huskers).  One key will be if the Pac-10 matches us with Utah at the end of the year, when all the other Pac-10 in-state battles have taken place.  If that occurs, the rivalry should grow and eventually reach the level where it stood for over half of the last century.  CU-Utah was THE game for many years in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference and then in the Mountain States Conference; in fact, after the Buffs split for the Big Seven in 1948, the two went on to play 13 more times before the series went dormant after the last game in 1962.  I’d like to see a trophy develop for such a game, perhaps the King of the Rockies Trophy with a skier schussing down a steep slope carrying a football.  Could be cool!   

 

 Debunking A Rumor Part 1: CU Is Cash-Strapped

Well, aside from a handful of schools, who isn’t watching what they spend? There’s a difference between being strapped for cash and working within a balanced budget.  Where would CU get the money to replace the exit penalty from the Big 12? In fact, again aside from a handful of schools, where would anyone get it from?  Don’t think many departments have contingency budgets in eight figures.  The thing is, we’re operating in the black; we hear many in our own conference are as much as $8 million in the hole.  In 2008-09, Colorado ranked 24th in net revenue among the 66 BCS schools, earning $14.8 million attributed to football after expenses (overall, CU ranked 51st in total revenue, $49.9 million, which was eighth in the Big 12).  The top 10 football revenue producing, along with all Big 12 and Pac-10 schools are listed below:

 

Rank

University

Net Revenue

Conference

1

Texas

$65.02

Big 12

2

Georgia

$45.38

SEC

3

Florida

$43.29

SEC

4

Penn State

$42.63

Big Ten

5

LSU

$39.12

SEC

6

Notre Dame

$38.18

Independent

7

Alabama

$38.16

SEC

8

Nebraska

$37.29

Big 12

9

South Carolina

$37.23

SEC

10

Ohio State

$35.89

Big Ten

14

Texas A&M

$22.29

Big 12

15

Oklahoma

$21.84

Big 12

18

Oregon State

$18.35

Pac-10

22

Washington

$15.64

Pac-10

24

Colorado

$14.78

Big 12

25

Oklahoma State

$14.04

Big 12

26

USC

$13.83

Pac-10

30

Arizona State

$12.64

Pac-10

33

Texas Tech

$9.62

Big 12

37

Oregon

$8.92

Pac-10

39

California

$8.62

Pac-10

40

Missouri

$8.46

Big 12

41

Arizona

$8.31

Pac-10

42

UCLA

$8.25

Pac-10

46

Kansas State

$7.36

Big 12

47

Iowa State

$6.86

Big 12

54

Kansas

$4.34

Big 12

57

Washington State

$2.48

Pac-10

59

Baylor

$0.99

Big 12

61

Stanford

$0.66

Pac-10

66

Duke

-$6.72

ACC

 

 

 Debunking A Rumor Part 2: Who Created The Big 12?

Read this in a Daily Oklahoman column during realignment-palooza: “Texas and Oklahoma basically created the Big 12. Those schools' athletic directors went to New York, priced the new league with the networks and advertisers and came away with a winner.”  That is 100 percent hogwash.  Back in 1994, those two schools weren’t exactly national players at the time and no one from the Big 8 was kowtowing to any school in the now-defunct Southwest Conference.  Perhaps their AD’s were assigned to visit New York, but if so, they were sent as delegates for all.  The truth is most of the schools had a hand in expanding the old Big 8 and creating the new league.  Then-CU athletic director Bill Marolt addressed the above:

 

“The Big 12 was created when CU was sitting in the chair of the Big 8.  All of the decisions related to the conference and the television deals were done at meetings of all members of the 12 eventual schools.  I was chair of the athletic directors and Jim (Corbridge, CU chancellor) was the same for the faculty reps.  As you know the chair controls meetings and the agenda so both Jim and I were intimately involved.  It’s too bad (former Big 8 Commissioner) Carl James is no longer alive because he would confirm our role and quiet the historical revisionists.”

 

What will confirm it is the Regent vote in December 1994, where after being invited to the Pac-10 Conference, the vote was 6-3 to stay put, solely because Colorado had played an intricate role in the development of the Big 12.  Had we not, we would have bolted then; it was an integrity issue.

 

 

 Debunking A Rumor Part 3: Mileage Doubles For CU In The Pac-10

Some have thumped their chests that with the switch to Pac-10 Conference, Colorado has backed itself into a corner and will have to travel a lot further than it does now.  Well, might want to look at the facts (I know, I know, they never let facts stand in the way of a criticism).  First of all it only affects conference play; in several sports (most frequently in cross country & track, golf), the Buffs already are participating in several west coast events.  In actuality, the difference in air miles between CU traveling to the 11 Big 12 sites and the soon-to-be 11 Pac-10 sites is only 1,982 more (or 180 miles per school, or only 30 additional minutes based on a conservative airspeed of 360 mph; 20 minutes at 450 mph).  However, once pulled into the gate at the closest airport, whereas CU was, via car, van or bus, a collective 13 hours from the airport to the respective campuses in the Big 12, it will be just a shade over five hours (5:05) for the Pac-10 campus sites, with all less than an hour away (if making one connection on the way to Washington State, otherwise it’s the only site with a drive time over an hour if you fly into Spokane; compared to six in the Big 12, four of which were two-hours plus).  That also lowers the average distance to just 137 miles more per school.  The numbers (all based from DIA in Denver; charter flights from Rocky Mountain Regional airport would all be about 20 miles shorter):

 

BIG 12

Denver to

Air Miles

Local Airport

Campus

Miles

Time

League Office

Dallas

       660

Dallas-Ft. Worth Int’l

Irving

    10

  0:20

Baylor

Dallas

       660

Dallas-Ft. Worth Int’l

Waco

     95

  2:00

Iowa State

Des Moines

       604

Des Moines International

Ames

     40

  0:55

Kansas

Kansas City

       565

KCI

Lawrence

     50

  1:15

Kansas State

Kansas City

       565

KCI

Manhattan

   120

  2:00

Missouri

Kansas City

       565

KCI

Columbia

   140

  2:20

Nebraska

Lincoln

       440

Lincoln Airport

Lincoln

       5

  0:10

Oklahoma

Oklahoma City

       505

Will Rogers World (OKC)

Norman

     20

  0:30

Oklahoma State

Oklahoma City

       505

Will Rogers World (OKC)

Stillwater

     65

  1:20

Texas

Austin

       767

Austin-Bergstrom Int’l

Austin

     10

  0:15

Texas A&M

Houston

       874

Houston Intercontinental

College Station

     90

  2:00

Texas Tech

Dallas-Lubbock

       961

DFW-Preston (Lubbock)

Lubbock

     10

  0:20

TOTALS

(schools only)

  7,011

 

 

  645

13:05

 

PAC-10

Denver to

Air Miles

Local Airport

Campus

Miles

Time

League Office

Oakland

946

Oakland International

Walnut Creek

    28

  0:40

Arizona

Tucson

       640

Tucson International

Tucson

      8

  0:15

Arizona State

Phoenix

       586

Sky Harbor International

Tempe

      4

  0:10

California

Oakland

       946

Oakland International

Berkeley

    12

  0:25

Oregon

Eugene

       980

Eugene Airport

Eugene

    10

  0:20

Oregon State

Eugene

       980

Eugene Airport

Corvallis

    35

  0:45

Stanford

San Jose

       934

San Jose International (SJI)

Palo Alto

    20

  0:30

UCLA

Los Angeles

       840

LAX

Los Angeles

    15

  0:40

USC

Los Angeles

       840

LAX

Los Angeles

    10

  0:20

Utah

Salt Lake City

       379

Salt Lake City International

Salt Lake City

    10

  0:15

Washington

Seattle

    1,026

Sea-Tac International

Seattle

    20

  0:40

#Washington St.

Lewiston via SLC

       842

Lewiston Nez-Perce Reg.

Pullman

    30

  0:45

#Washington St.

Spokane

       830

Spokane International

Pullman

    70

  1:45

TOTALS

(schools only)

   8,993

 

 

 174

  5:05

#—option 1: connecting flights through Salt Lake City (most options), Boise or Seattle; shorter drive time after landing.

#—option 2: direct flight into Spokane countered by 100-120 minute drive on a two-lane road over to Pullman.

 

 

 Debunking A Rumor Part 4: All CU Sports Will Struggle In The Pac-10


Colorado swept the team titles at the 2004 NCAA Cross Country Championships.
Yes, the Pacific-10 Conference is known for its national champions (300-plus), most in non-revenue producing sports.   But the Big 12 isn’t exactly Swiss cheese, and over the course of 14 years, most CU teams enjoyed a good deal of success (can you say Cross Country?).  The Pac-10 likely just became the nation’s top conference in that sport, with Colorado, Stanford and Oregon regular top five finishers in the NCAA championships.  The Buffs seldom finished last in the Big 12 in any sport – in fact, it’s happened just 14 times (out of 192 possibilities): men’s basketball and women’s indoor track three times each, men’s indoor track and women’s outdoor track twice each, men’s tennis tied for last twice, women’s basketball once and women’s volleyball tied for last once.

 

Random Sport Snapshot: There’s no doubt the Pac-10 is the premier men’s golf conference.  Now CU was 2-23 against Pac-10 teams in 2009-10, when the Buffs were as young as they’ve been in a long time; the previous year, with a seasoned team, the Buffs were 9-13.  Many of the 36 defeats (13, six last year) came at the hands of Oregon or Washington, two top 10 programs over those two years.  And remember many things about golf, victories and defeats often are by single digits spread over 54 holes and four golfers a team.  So, can CU compete in men’s golf, one of the premier sports in the Pac-10?  I believe yes; the Big 12 is also pretty darn good, and our ’08-09 team finished second, pushing top-ranked Oklahoma State for 63 holes before succumbing. 

 

Debunking A Rumor Part 5: Marketing Expert Say CU Brought Nothing To Big 12

A marketing expert who wouldn’t allow his name to be used was quoted in a few places that the Big 12 doesn’t lose anything with the departure of Colorado (he even pointed out the addition Utah with its TV market didn’t bring much).   Last I checked Denver had a top 18 market, so right off the bat you have to wonder.  And once the TV networks look at the remaining 10 schools in the Big 12 and their football scheduling philosophy, one has to think they will in fact lower what they intend to pay or demand conference games are held every weekend.  Since 2006, Colorado has played the most BCS teams by Big 12 schools with 9, with Oklahoma next with 8; CU’s 22 in 14 seasons by far and away was the most in the history of the league (and that count would be higher if the Mountain West had earned BCS status five years ago).  Those are the games selected for television, and our scheduling philosophy was revered by the network bosses.  No wonder Mr. Marketing Man didn’t want his name out there—would you hire someone with such little basic knowledge?

 

 

Plati-‘Tudes Survey Revisited

In the end, 547 people responded to my P-‘Tudes poll about where the Buffaloes should wind up in the conference realignment scenario.  In the end 59 percent wanted to switch to the Pac-10 regardless of any other movement, and another 27 percent said to switch if the national landscape dictated such; just under 15 percent wanted to stick in the Big 12 regardless, but if queried again seeing the concessions made to some of the southern schools, that number likely would be closer to zero.  We always stated through the process that we were loyal members of the Big 12, but that we would do whatever we felt best for the school, not only athletically but academically.  The poll:

 

58.9%  322   Join the Pacific-10 Conference

26.5%  145   Join the Pacific-10 only if the national landscape is significantly altered

14.6%    80   Stay put in the Big 12 Conference

 

Utah was the choice by 58 percent of the 467 voters who were for the switch, but the next biggest vote getter was “No choice/Don’t care” which pulled in 9 percent.  The next most popular school to join us was Boise State (8 percent) and then UNLV (6 percent).

 

 

 Big Al Headed To The Hall


Alfred Williams
Alfred Williams (’90) will become our fifth player to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame this December; hopefully, he’ll be the first of several affiliated with our consensus national championship team from that season.  Everyone has their favorite Alfred story; one of mine was in the waning minutes of our 27-12 win at Nebraska, with about three minutes remaining, he noticed the fans were filing out as the game was basically over.  Mad about a low-class reference to the death of Sal Aunese, he and Kanavis McGhee jumped on the bench and started waving goodbye to all those dressed in red; karma, indeed, can be sweet.  Coach Bill McCartney and tailback Eric Bieniemy were on the national ballot for the first time in 2010; guard Joe Garten is on the regional ballot; all will remain on their respective ballots and we'll figure out shortly the next Buff to get into the mix.    

 

Buffs Lose A Past Great In Salerno


Bob Salerno (left) with coach Sonny Grandelius

Former Buff offensive linemen Bob Salerno passed away in Anaheim, Calif., on July 7 at the age of 73.  Salerno, a tackle and linebacker, was from Trinidad (Holy Trinity High School) and lettered three years from 1956-59; he was the roommate of CU Athletic Hall of Fame member John Wooten, an All-American in 1958.  Salerno was popular among his teammates and a leader as well; he was named team captain for the 1959 season, CU’s first in a decade as the Buffs went with different players every game day during most of the Dal Ward Era.  He was also tough—he missed the 1957 season after being injured working his summer job: he fell off plane hangar while painting and suffered one broken wrist, a dislocation of the other and a severe concussion.  “Our hearts are saddened with the loss of a great friend and wonderful person. I was blessed to have Bob as a (life-long) friend,” Wooten relayed to me in an e-mail.  For a further look at Bob’s life, especially for what he accomplished after he left CU, a full biography can be found here: http://www.anaheimcolonists.com/archives/1420.

 

 

 

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 The P-‘Tudes Mailbag

The usual grab-bag of questions fired my way by P-‘Tudes readers and others that I thought others would be interested in:

 


Irv Brown, former CU baseball coach
Q: With CU set to join the Pac-10, what is the reality that baseball will be brought back?  I’m always hearing that it’s not that expensive and we should do it!

A: It’ on our wish list; remember Mike Bohn played college baseball, which has come a long way since we last had the sport in 1980.  That’s when the attendance often numbered less than 10, with the only season ticket holder I remember being “The Owner,” Dan Creedon, Sr.  Assistant SID Mike Bialas and ticket manager Kevin Fenton were always out there, as was a trainer and often myself who helped on the beat. But since then, the sport has been embraced by television and has really exploded, so it’s a different time.  Plus we have Coors Field where we would be interested in playing some games every year if the Rockies are open to it.  Remember—when Mike was at San Diego State, they set the collegiate attendance record (42,000-plus) at Petco Park.

 

As far as the cost, I know Irv Brown (former coach, Denver radio legend) sometimes touts that it’s not that much money, and it wasn’t by comparison back when he coached; I think the budget was around $150,000 when it was cut.  That wouldn’t cover the scholarship costs today: the sport is allowed 11.7 scholarships (financial aid), spread among no more than 27 “counters” on a roster that can have no more than 35 players.  The cost would vary depending on in-state/out-of-state students, but for the last academic year, the if 9.7 financial aid awards were in-state (approximately $188,000) and the other 2.0 awarded to out of state players ($78,000), that cost would have been $266,000 alone (and that’s for an undergraduate Arts & Sciences student; it’s higher for business and engineering students).  And similar costs to add a companion women’s sport for Title IX, so right off the top figure in the $500-600,000 range just for scholarships. 

 

Q: Miffed at the Missouri governor’s (D-Jay Nixon) comments about CU and NU’s basketball programs?

A: Not really; after observing the pull he had on various other issues, it was just sour grapes.  His opinion was uninformed, laughable and embarrassing, so let him cook his own goose.  If I recall, this is the same blowhard-slash-bozo who insulted the academics at two Big 12 peer institutions last fall, and he also seemed to forget that Missouri lost to Nebraska (75-60) in the first round of the Big 12 tournament. Glad our governor exhibits a lot more class than that guy (speaking of which, it was pretty darn cool of Bill Ritter to rearrange his schedule on less than 24 hours notice to help greet Pac-10 commish at Rocky Mountain Regional Airport).

 

Q: Any chance the Cal football game will be called off since you’re soon to be conference rivals?

A: Nope, none at all.  Too far in the process, and it never even came up.  Utah and Oregon called off a basketball home-and-home, but a hoops game is much easier to replace at a later date.

 


Tyler Hansen
Q: It seems like you all are keeping Tyler Hansen out of the media.  Is this by design?

A: In a word, huh?  There’s been little local stuff the last month since it’s (first) early summer and (second) we kind of had this news nugget of moving to the Pac-10.  But Tyler just did three interviews I asked him to do last week, however, all were out of town.  My philosophy has been simple: educate the players on how to do interviews, but never shelter them; the experience of doing interviews is invaluable, not only in representing their sport, but for later in life.

 

Q: How did CU’s APR info get out a day ahead of time during the conference realignment frenzy?

A: It was leaked by a Big 12 member institution.  Only the schools and conference offices had the info, which was password protected to the general public but each school could gain access two days earlier to the information for each school nationally.  In this case, it was definitely leaked to the media by people closely associated with a particular school; that was confirmed by three different people from ESPN alone to me who flat out told me which school did it.  I won’t expose that institution (at least not now, I’ll get ‘em good in my book in a decade or so), as we prefer it to be handled between the Faculty Athletic Representatives.  But as was the case, only part of the story was relayed about CU being penalized five football scholarships; what wasn’t leaked out was the fact that we had already absorbed the penalty.  Of course, that neutralizes the damage, and would have made it practically a non-story, but that obviously wasn’t the motive of the “leaker.” 

 

Q: You’ve been SID forever, do you want to be an athletic director? 

A: I have never had a desire to be an athletic director; I’m an associate, I have the big guy’s ear, I’m involved so I’m happy.  Many of my peers aspire to be AD’s, and some have ascended to that level and even to that of conference commissioner.  But I cherish the things I do on the side, which would all come to an end; those things (official scoring, stats for Broncos/KOA, working the BCS title games, BolderBOULDER media, Rocky Mountain Golf Writers, etc.) are my escape.  So, you’re stuck with me.

 

 

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 Former Buff Beat Writer Pens Denver History Book

Mike Madigan, who covered the Buffaloes from 1979-87, recently was invited to author the text for a new coffee table book that will be released Aug. 1. Historic Photos of Denver in the 50s, 60s and 70s is the story, in dramatic black and white images, of the transformation of the Mile High City in the decades after World War II in a 10 x 10-inch hardback book.  If you visit Mike’s website, www.michaelmadiganauthor.com, you can find out more about the nearly 200 photographs in the book and the stories behind them. The story of what was lost and what remains of Denver following the wreckage of urban renewal during this era. The volume strolls the streets of vanished neighborhoods and wanders a downtown with hints of its history, and hopeful peeks at its future. Most of the photos were selected from the private collections of professional photographers donated to the Denver Public Library, and many of the images have never been viewed publicly before.

 

 A Legend Passes

Yes, I am a New York Yankees fan, but I am a native New Yorker, so I am allowed.  So it was sad to hear on July 11 that one of, if not THE, greatest stadium public address announcers passed away.  Bob Sheppard, who was 99, started in 1951 the same game Mickey Mantle made his Yankee debut, and he went on to call Yankee (and New York Giants football) games for the better part of the next six decades.  Sheppard set the standard, which he summed up as “being clear, concise and correct.”  I’d like to think our own Alan Cass for CU football and basketball games, and formerly of the Denver Broncos, is of a similar cloth; it’s not about him, it’s about informing the fans and then let the action take place.  We’ve all had to put up with, “It’s another (insert school here) first down!” or the several blowhards in the NBA you can’t even understand.  Sheppard once said in an interview, “The modern public address announcer is a screamer, a shouter and is very flamboyant.  That’s not my philosophy.”  Wish it was for more PA people behind the mike.  

 

 Things That Make You Go Hmmm...

Nothing really jumped out at me this time for this, other than why doesn’t soccer start its clock at 45:00 for each half and then stop it for injuries, not to mention goal celebrations (those waste plenty of time when the scorer runs about a 50 yards, strips off his shirt and pretends to slide into second base).  There are very few things left in sports that are more mysterious than how much injury time there is after the soccer clock reaches 90 minutes.  The best World Cup joke I heard?  You know how Taco Bell rewards Nugget and Rockies fans with free tacos when they score 100 points and seven runs, respectively? They should have done the same with every World Cup game when each team registered three shots on goal.  Now, I don’t mind soccer and I love watching our women’s team, but I had a conversation with a few media people, and our consensus was Americans can deal with 1-0, 2-0, 2-1 games, etc., but they like seeing scoring opportunities.  I mean, no one wants to see NHL games end 9-8 or 14-13, either (well, maybe once in a blue moon), but at least there are shots on goal.  Likely the pros are so good that's why shots on goal are so rare, and that likely should be appreciated!

 

Website(s) of the ‘Tude

Those of you into game notes can usually find them on line with some hunting, but Major League Baseball has coordinated links to all websites that feature the notes on all 30 teams by going to just one site.  Locally, go to the Rockies’ site (www.coloradorockies.com), click on News and then Game Notes; or just copy this into your browser: http://rockies.mlb.com/mlb/presspass/gamenotes.jsp?c_id=col.  And in the Good Song/Bad Video department, stumbled upon this in some recent surfing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_nLiQBV6A7c.


 

 Congrats Shouts & Sympathies


Erich Schubert

Nick Bernal
Ø  To a pair of former CU sports information grad assistants: Erich Schubert (’09) was promoted to full-time with the Denver Broncos, and Nick Bernal (’10) was hired as an intern with the Tennessee Titans.  That’s four Buffs now in the NFL public relations ranks, with Adam Woullard in his sixth year with the Green Bay Packers and Patrick Gleason his fourth with the Baltimore Ravens.

Ø  To another SID office alum, Jim Gray (’81), who was selected by LeBron James’ camp to do the interview where he announced he would sign with Miami as a free agent.  Remember James’ handlers were allowed to run the show, and while many were critical of Jim, he only had the “floor” for about six minutes with LeBron and I thought did a decent job in the midst of what was a total “LeCircus” (I could really chime in here, but many with Hemingway-esque talent better than mine already have done so).  Of course Jim was going to ask questions leading up to the main one of where James would be playing, but that seemed to irk the print people.  Jim made his early bones in the biz by doing the “CU Sports Hotline.”  Anyone remember that?  Whoever was in charge would do daily interviews with coaches and players, transfer it to a classic 1970s funky-looking machine, and fans could call in to listen.  The original “podcast” ...

Ø  CU’s marketing department won the NACMA (college marketing) bronze medal for the Ticket Sales Piece category; congrats to the hard workers over at Gate 1.

Ø  Once again to former CU bear writer from the Rocky Mountain News, Mike Madigan, whose book Heroes, Villains, Dames & Disasters / 150 Years of Front-Page Stories from the Rocky Mountain News took first place in the 2010 Colorado Authors’ League contest for General Non-fiction!  The contest was judged by the Colorado Association of Libraries; the judges' comments about the book:  "Heroes, Villains, Dames & Disasters: 150 Years of Front-Page Stories from the Rocky Mountain News" is an immensely enjoyable review of our history as a state and a nation. It is well written and rich with details that will fascinate history buffs and inspire a new love of Colorado in each reader who delves into its pages."
You can order or read more about at my web site -- www.michaelmadiganauthor.com.

Ø  Condolences to the family and teammates of Steve Salvatore (’82), who passed away July 10 in Norwood, Mass.  The Boston native who lettered three years for the Buffaloes as a defensive back (weak safety) had just turned 49 on June 28.  Originally a quarterback at Colorado (he wore No. 10), he prepped at Norwood High School and his path in life led him back to where his roots.  He had fought multiple sclerosis for quite some time and finally succumbed due to complications from the disease.

 

This Tudes’ Number: 1,630

That was the increase per game in CU men’s basketball last winter, as the Buffs averaged 6,267 per 16 home games, which ranked 86th in the country (out of 343); the increase of 1,630 per game was sixth in the nation, behind only Kansas State, Arkansas Pine-Bluff, Hampton, Kentucky and West Virginia.  While CU was 12th in the Big 12, that figure would have ranked eighth in the Pac-10, where only Arizona (19th; 13,815) averaged over 9,500 per game. 

 

 Trivia Answers

CU—Stanford, Washington and Washington State all at one time competed for the NCAA ski title.  The best finish among them was a fourth place effort by Washington in 1966.

Who Am I?Jay Howell.  Jay played 15 seasons in the majors, spending the bulk of his career with the Dodgers, Yankees and Athletics, before retiring after the 1994 season.  He was 58-53 with a 3.34 earned run average overall, but moved into the closer role in his sixth season and wound up recording 155 saves.  And he still threw the heat, striking out 666 in 844.2 innings.

Music—Duran Duran (named after a character in the Jane Fonda movie, Barbarella, by the way), the Go-Gos, Talk Talk and Mr. Mister.

Name That Tune--Two lines from the University of Utah fight song.

 

“Plati-‘Tudes” features notes and stories that may not get much play from the mainstream media; offers CU’s take on issues raised by those who have an interest in the program; answers questions and concerns; and provides CU’s point of view if we should disagree with what may have been written or broadcast.   Have a question or want to know CU’s take on something?  E-mail Dave at david.plati@colorado.edu, and the subject may appear in the next Plati-‘Tudes.  

 

 
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