The Colorado football team returns 18 starters and 14 other players with starting experience.
But first-year head coach Mike MacIntyre said he has “no idea” what the talent level in the program is and won’t get a feel for what’s in the cupboard until he sees the Buffaloes roam on the practice field.
That process begins on Thursday when spring drills open on the CU practice fields.
MacIntyre doesn’t have a depth chart and will not assign positions until the end of spring. The coaching staff is also going to ease the players into their new schemes.
All six quarterbacks currently on the roster will be given a chance to compete for the starting job over the first eight practices. At that point the crowded field will be narrowed to three candidates with freshman-to-be Sefo Liufau joining the fray this summer.
“Every position is wide open,” MacIntyre said during a press conference on Tuesday in the bowels of the Dal Ward Center.
Practices are also open to the public and the media. But for how long? MacIntyre said he will have to close the sessions if observers tweet, blog or post video of any of the action.
“Just come watch,” MacIntyre said. “Get a feel for it.”
I attended a San Jose State practice last week at Spartan Stadium. There were two or three fans watching from the cheap seats, and I was the only reporter who conducted interviews when the practice was over.
The interest in the CU football program compared to the interest in the Spartans in the Bay Area, is like the competition jump from the dying WAC to the Pac-12.
I predict the policy lasts a week or two before the gates are closed again.