Change isn’t always easy.
Colorado new Head Football Coach Mike MacIntyre realizes this, this is his second straight challenge to rebuild a struggling football program. He returned San Jose State to a 10 game winner, now he faces a bigger challenge taking the Buffs Football program to prominence in the PAC 12.
MacIntyre was one of the more confident speakers here in Los Angeles at the PAC 12 Media Day held at Sony Studios this past Friday.
His Colorado team was picked dead last out of 12 schools with the Buffs garnering just 28 points in a media poll that has Oregon tabbed to win the conference and UCLA picked to win the South Division. The Bruins tallied 135 points compared to the Buffs 28.
“We have to change the culture,” MacIntyre explained Friday. “You have to earn the player’s trust, you have to teach them how to believe in themselves again. Those are all things in teaching players how to win again.”
Colorado is coming off a dismal season that witnessed the Buffs winning just one game in 2012 and CU administration deciding to go a different direction with its coaching staff.
MacIntyre made it clear that he feels honored and blessed to be the new head football coach at Colorado.
“I can't tell you how blessed and honored I am to be here, representing Colorado,” MacIntyre said.
He was quick to point out that despite where his team was picked in the PAC 12, he is upbeat and positive about the future of the program.
"The future is bright no matter what you're hearing out there about Colorado,” MacIntyre said. “I can’t wait for our players to return on August 5 and get fall camp underway on the 6th.”
Building confidence, teaching his players to believe in themselves and the Buffs coaching staff are things that are on top of MacIntyre’s to do list.
“We have to earn their trust as coaches,” MacIntyre said. “We have some good football players now, our players are buying in to what we are doing, those are things that are important for us as we rebuild this program.”
MacIntyre and his coaching staff are very experienced in changing young men’s confidence, the majority of his staff were with him at San Jose State. That’s a major reason that makes MacIntyre feel that he is farther ahead here at Colorado than he was when he first arrived at San Jose State.
“Bringing the majority of my staff with me has helped us be farther ahead here at Colorado,” MacIntyre said. “It’s not just Mike MacIntyre, I have a great coaching staff. Getting the players headed all in the same direction is critical.”
Junior wide receiver Paul Richardson had a spark in his eye Friday when the PAC 12 Media Day predictions were mentioned.
“I’m glad we are picked last in the conference,” Richardson said. “That in itself is enough to help motivate our team to prove that they are wrong on predicting us to be last. No one other than our team knows how hard we have been working, we as players and coaches know that we are better than that.”
MacIntyre and his coaching staff hit the ground running this past spring, and one of the first things that they did was to have his players compete in everything that they do.
“Competition breeds improvement,” MacIntyre said. “We are being firm with our players but also being positive with them at the same time. Being positive is crucial when building young mens confidence, teaching them to compete for everything that they is a first step in the process.”
When asked if he had the talent to win right away at Colorado, MacIntyre didn’t flinch.
“We have some good talent on this team,” MacIntyre said. “Now it’s up to all of us to be in this thing together, to believe in one another and to expect more out of ourselves. When that happens, we will be ok.”