By Christopher Wuensch
CAREER COACHING RECORD: 16-21, San Jose State
YEAR AT COLORADO: 1st
Mike MacIntyre has turned around a program before. He’s got his work cut out for him if he’s going to do it again.
MacIntyre signed on in December to replace Jon Embree as the 25th coach in University of Colorado history.
The Buffs can’t go much lower. Colorado finished 2012 with a program-worst 1-11 record under Embree.
MacIntyre might just be what the Buffs need. The 48-year-old arrives in Boulder having turned around San Jose State, who was suffering from the nation’s longest active losing streak (13 games) when MacIntyre took the helm.
In three seasons, the Spartans went from 1-12 to 11-2, beat Bowling Green in the Military Bowl and finished the season ranked in the BCS rankings as well as the AP and Coaches polls.
The biggest hurdle for MacIntyre will be finding talent — especially under center.
Six different quarterbacks led multiple drives during the March 15 scrimmage, including, Shane Dillon, Stevie Joe Dorman, Nick Hirschman, John Schrock, Jordan Webb and Connor Wood. In the fall, three-star recruit Sefo Liufau will throw his helmet into the mix.
MacIntyre — a former defensive coordinator for Duke and Temple — is well versed on the recruiting trail. His 2012 recruiting class at San Jose State was regarded by many as the best in the WAC.
At Colorado, he takes over an offense that ranked 118th in the nation and a defense that finished 99th in the country in YPG.
Colorado needs to get faster and more athletic. The once proud program has fallen on hard times and, despite some miracles, should continue to struggle as MacIntyre builds a foundation.
FOURTH DOWN: Working against Mike MacIntyre might be the school itself, who has proven they can be quick to pull the plug. Previous coach Jon Embree, a CU alumnus, won just four games in his only two seasons in Boulder.