Keeler: Deion Sanders is a false prophet. CU Buffs? College Football Playoffs? I’ll have what Coach Prime’s smoking

6
Keeler: Deion Sanders is a false prophet. CU Buffs? College Football Playoffs? I’ll have what Coach Prime’s smoking



Deion Sanders is a false prophet, the Bruce Lee of B.S., Harold Hill in designer shades. He’s also in the wrong business.

If Coach Prime wanted to run for governor, he’d kill it. Rallies for breakfast. Adoring fans for miles. No NCAA. No recruiting rules. No pesky Washington States to hammer you senseless in the cold. No Stanford to hand you a hubris sandwich. No scoreboard staring back with an inconvenient truth you can’t bend to fit the company narrative.

“Yeah, most definitely,” he told Fox Sports’ Skip Bayless last week when asked if his 4-8 CU Buffs were ready to crash the College Football Playoffs in 2024. “Shoot, I believe, man.

“I don’t just wear this on my shirt and on my chest. I truly believe that what we have in-house (is enough). Last year, (Keyshawn Johnson) watched all these games. We were seven points away from a multitude of wins, probably seven or eight more wins. We just didn’t know how to win.”

I watched all those games, too. Prime’s Buffs were 0-5 in Pac-12 tilts decided by seven points or fewer. They were 26 points away, in total, from flipping a 1-8 conference mark into 6-3 — so, five more net wins.

I mean, almost a multitude. A near-multitude.

Which, if you’re curious, still won’t get your ticket punched for the CFP. Since the Big 12 did away with divisions in determining who made its championship game in 2017, no team in a non-pandemic season has played for the league title with more than two conference losses on its resume.

Huckstery for survival is instinctive. Huckstery with conviction is a gift. Sanders can sell ice to a penguin and leave you counting sunburns on a rainy day.

“But several of those games, we can’ve won those games,” the Buffs’ second-year coach said to Bayless.

“We can’ve really been — definitely a bowl team, but we can’ve been someone who made a lot of noise. We made noise. But now, (we’re) gonna make some sounds.”

Heck, yeah, they will. Loud ones. Although how much of that din gets taken seriously depends on a three-week, season-opening stretch that kicks off with North Dakota State, Team Trap Game, at Folsom Field. The Shedeur Sanders Farewell Tour then sashays into the friendly confines of Lincoln (Nebraska) and Fort Collins (CSU).

Anybody who sets the bar higher than eight wins is trying to take your money. Or your soul.

And speaking of money, did you happen to check out CU’s 2022-23 fiscal report to the NCAA? It’s a doozy. The more scraps that trickle out, the more the Buffs’ sheer desperation some 13-14 months ago gets laid bare.

According to the fiscal year that ended this past June 30, despite a summery, persistent Chip Diller — “Remain calm, all is well” — vibe from Camp Prime, CU’s athletic department wound up roughly $9 million in the red.

The blood was on several hands, in retrospect, none of them shockers. Former Pac-12 commish Larry Scott’s “Scott’s Tots” of a channel, the Pac-12 Network, cost CU least $6 million due to Comcast shenanigans. The Buffs also had to account for $7.32 million owed — Sanders stripped the CU football staff to the bone before he did the same with his roster — in severance payments to Karl Dorrell, a 2020 hire, and his former assistants.

But perhaps the most curious line in the report, at least to some academics in and around BoCo, was the one marked “direct institutional support.” In layman’s terms, that includes state funds, tuition, tuition discounts, etc. — some of your dollars at work.

Nice work if you get it, too. CU athletics collected $27.8 million in direct institutional support from the university proper over the ’22-23 fiscal. That was a whopping jump of $19.8 million over the department’s $8.02 million take in institutional support in its ’21-22 report — in fact, over the previous nine CU budgets, that total had never exceeded $9.01 million in any given cycle.

The Buffs’ institutional buffer was reportedly the second-largest in the country among public Power 5 schools Sportico.com had data on for ’22-23, trailing only future Big 12 rival Cincinnati ($35.529 million).

“It’s fairly rare for a Power 5 (program) to be losing that amount of money. That’s unusual and problematic,” Victor Matheson, an economics professor at Holy Cross and a Boulder native, told me last week.

“Institutional support means you’re losing money, you’re covering up money with redirected money that can go to whatever. … It can’ve been directed at (university) housing, it can’ve been directed at the law school, take your choice.

“That’s not great at all. However, I think we all understand the difference between what was going on in the (fall) of 2022 and what was going on in September 2023 is a world of difference.”

As the Prime Time hype train left the station, The Buffs sold out every home game — heck, even a spring game — while donations to the Buff Club ($28 million in FY ’23, reportedly), ticket sales and merchandise sales exploded. CU can argue, and justifiably, that the Buffs had to spend money to start making more of it. Although …

“While the rest of the university kicked in ($27.8 million) to subsidize the athletic program when things were bad,” Matheson noted with a chuckle, “it’s very unlikely we’re going to see the athletic department take any (’23-24) profit and kick it back to the university.”

False prophets or false profits? Either way, talk is cheap. I’d run through a wall for Deion. But only if that wall was made of foam bricks and broken promises.

Want more sports news? Sign up for the Sports Omelette to get all our analysis on Denver’s teams.




Disasters Expo USA, is proud to be supported by Inergency for their next upcoming edition on March 6th & 7th 2024!

The leading event mitigating the world’s most costly disasters is returning to the Miami Beach

Convention Center and we want you to join us at the industry’s central platform for emergency management professionals.
Disasters Expo USA is proud to provide a central platform for the industry to connect and
engage with the industry’s leading professionals to better prepare, protect, prevent, respond
and recover from the disasters of today.
Hosting a dedicated platform for the convergence of disaster risk reduction, the keynote line up for Disasters Expo USA 2024 will provide an insight into successful case studies and
programs to accurately prepare for disasters. Featuring sessions from the likes of The Federal Emergency Management Agency,
NASA, The National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NOAA, The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, TSA and several more this event is certainly providing you with the knowledge
required to prepare, respond and recover to disasters.
With over 50 hours worth of unmissable content, exciting new features such as their Disaster
Resilience Roundtable, Emergency Response Live, an Immersive Hurricane Simulation and
much more over just two days, you are guaranteed to gain an all-encompassing insight into
the industry to tackle the challenges of disasters.
By uniting global disaster risk management experts, well experienced emergency
responders and the leading innovators from the world, the event is the hub of the solutions
that provide attendees with tools that they can use to protect the communities and mitigate
the damage from disasters.
Tickets for the event are $119, but we have been given the promo code: HUGI100 that will
enable you to attend the event for FREE!

So don’t miss out and register today: https://shorturl.at/aikrW

And in case you missed it, here is our ultimate road trip playlist is the perfect mix of podcasts, and hidden gems that will keep you energized for the entire journey

-

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More