AD Rick George needs to find his own Lance Leipold, experts say


Brock Huard’s first piece of advice for CU athletic director Rick George?

Save words such as “powerhouse” and “greatness,” terms the Buffs administrator used recently to describe the ceiling of his 0-5 football program, for the boosters. And the pep rallies.

“(CU football) is much more like a Kansas than it is an Oklahoma,” Huard, the FOX Sports college football analyst and former Washington Huskies quarterback told The Post when asked about the Buffs’ current vacancy at football coach. “It’s not to (Kansas’) depths, but take the pandemic season (2020) out and how many winning seasons do they have this century?”

That would be five. And if we apply the same barometer to the Jayhawks, KU has three.

“Do coaches look at that job and go, ‘Oh, there’ve been some pretty good people in there, there’ve been some pretty smart football guys,’” Huard continued, “ ‘and they’ve had two winning seasons since (2005)?’ Take the pandemic year out, and things sort of write themselves.”

It’s early October 2022 and five Power 5 athletic departments — including the Buffs, who let Karl Dorrell go on Oct. 2 with 60% of the regular season left to play — are out looking for their next full-time football coach.

Some big fishes, too. According to the Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics’ database, the median athletic expenditure by a Power 5, or “Autonomy 5” public school in 2021 was $103.9 million.

Of the five heavy-hitters — Wisconsin, Nebraska, Arizona State, Georgia Tech and CU — looking for a new coach, only the Yellow Jackets and Buffs spent significantly less than that Power 5 median, with expenses of $85.9 million and $64.6 million, respectively. (Arizona State’s expenditures reportedly hit $103.8 million, or just below the mark.)

Within that subset, the Buffs’ spending power ranked fifth out of five, comparatively. Could that put a damper on expectations for a splashy hire before the process has really cranked up? Or does it raise the level of urgency to try and snap up a quality candidate quicker than you’d like?

“The parallel job, if you’re looking for a coach, is Utah,” Big Ten Network analyst and former CU offensive coordinator Gerry DiNardo told The Post. “(Utes coach) Kyle Whittingham has made up for whatever deficiencies Utah has. Kyle Whittingham has somehow found a way to beat USC, UCLA, Oregon and Washington.


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