Q&A with Col­orado coach Mike Mac­In­tyre, whose team is com­ing off a 10-4 sea­son.

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Kyle Fredrick­son

LOS AN­GE­LES » Univer­sity of Col­orado coach Mike Mac­In­tyre re­ceived more at­ten­tion than usual this week at Pac-12 me­dia days af­ter the Buf­faloes be­came one of col­lege foot­ball’s fas­ci­nat­ing story lines last fall en route to win­ning the con­fer­ence’s South Divi­sion cham­pi­onship and fin­ish­ing 10-4.

Mac­In­tyre dis­cussed team ex­pec­ta­tions at length dur­ing his time at the lectern Wed­nes­day in ad­di­tion to other top­ics sur­round­ing the Buf­faloes.

Q. How do you re­flect on what hap­pened last sea­son and how did it come to­gether?

A. “I felt like com­ing into last sea­son I was say­ing it, and a lot of peo­ple were laugh­ing at me when I said I thought we could be Pac-12 cham­pi­ons. I never told our team be­fore that and I never said that pub­licly be­fore last year. We had the mak­ings to do that. We got there but just didn’t fin­ish it like we want to. I felt like as the sea­son went along, the back-to­back road games at Michi­gan and Ore­gon, we played well against Michi­gan but screwed it up. I think that gave our kids con­fi­dence that, wow, we can do this. Then win­ning the game with the style we did at Ore­gon where the year be­fore we lost a lot of close games, we’d come back and lose at the end. To win it that way I think just pro­pelled them and gave them con­fi­dence at the end of games last year that we were able to fin­ish games of­ten and be more suc­cess­ful.”

Q. What did this group learn from the loss in the Pac-12 cham­pi­onship game?

A. “What we learned from it is Wash­ing­ton’s re­ally good. Then we also learned from it that in the four games that we lost were all top-10 teams. We weren’t as good on the of­fen­sive line as their de­fen­sive lines were con­sis­tently. We have a lot of guys re­turn­ing on our of­fen­sive line that are 30 pounds stronger in the squat and the bench. We have young guys that we’ve red­shirted and moved in. This is the best of­fen­sive line we’ve had in the five years we’ve been there. We’re a good of­fen­sive line, and we have good depth. So I think that will help us stay on track in those games bet­ter, where we won’t look so hodge­podge on of­fense like we did in those games. Then we’ll be able to con­trol the clock a lit­tle bit bet­ter and move and score. So I feel good about our of­fen­sive line and be­ing able to han­dle that com­ing up.”

Q. How would you de­scribe your play­ers’ at­ti­tude en­ter­ing the 2017 sea­son?

A. “Their work ethic has been phe­nom­e­nal. It’s al­ways been great, but this group of guys un­der­stand what was left by the legacy of the other young men, and they don’t want a let­down, so I’ve seen a lit­tle bit more in­ten­sity. I’ve seen a lit­tle bit by the lead­ers, more in­volved, vo­cal. And Derek (Mc­Cart­ney) and Phillip (Lind­say) are both here; this is Derek’s sec­ond time to be a cap­tain, and this is Phillip’s third time. So we have two other cap­tains on our team, it’s their sec­ond time be­ing cap­tain. So we have four guys out of our six cap­tains that have been cap­tains mul­ti­ple times. You get a sec­ond chance to do it again, and you un­der­stand dif­fer­ent things to do.”

Q. What do you ex­pect when the sea­son opens Sept. 1 against Col­orado State?

A. “First of all, that’s al­ways an emo­tional game. They have an ex­cel­lent foot­ball team com­ing back. Their of­fense is ranked high in the coun­try. You know, they have an ad­van­tage this year. They’re play­ing Zero Week (in Fort Collins against) Ore­gon State, so that’s a big dif­fer­ence to me. Then we’re play­ing the first game (for CU), so we’ll have to catch up with them a lit­tle bit. Wish I would have known that way be­fore­hand, be­cause we would have put (in) a Zero Week game and not made (CSU our) first game. So that’s go­ing to be dif­fer­ent for us. So hope­fully we’ll be fresh and ready to go. But they’re very tal­ented.”

Andy Cross, The Den­ver Post

Mike Mac­In­tyre is en­ter­ing his fifth sea­son as CU’s foot­ball coach. The Buf­faloes were 10-4 last year, in­clud­ing the Pac-12’s South Divi­sion ti­tle. CU’s sea­son opener is Sept. 1 against CSU at Sports Au­thor­ity Field at Mile High.

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