Jon Embree's Twitter account didn't survive the loss to Sacramento State.

Presumably there was an overwhelming amount of over-the-top backlash following Colorado's numbing 30-28 loss to the Hornets of the FCS on Saturday at Folsom Field.

It appears two games into his second season as CU's head coach Embree has decided not to use the popular social media site to communicate directly with fans.

Last month when optimism about the 2012 campaign still existed, Embree playfully presented his followers with a riddle that revealed Jordan Webb as the Buffs' starting quarterback.

After a demeaning loss to another Big Sky opponent, the sky is falling for CU fanatics.

Colorado coach Jon Embree walks the sidelines of the of the Sacramento State game.
Colorado coach Jon Embree walks the sidelines of the of the Sacramento State game. ( CLIFF GRASSMICK )

Some of the printable comments sent to Embree (@JEbuffs) from "fans" before the shutdown included:

@darrelldefabry we try to back you but you make it impossible. Please do us a favor and step down.

@BoulderEric Sac State is trending. Good job, @cubuffs @JEbuffs

And the national media was also piling on with pithy salvos of 140 characters or less:

@SImandel If you ever wanted to see what a program looks like after the Death Penalty, without actually getting one, I give you Colorado.

Stewart Mandel covers college football for Sports Illustrated.

@DanWolken Colorado just lost to Sacramento State. Jon Embree so far a disaster hire. Not qualified for this level.

Wolken is a college football writer for USA Today.


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This isn't the first time the Buffs have experienced dark days on the gridiron during the modern era.

A decade before CU's national championship, the program lost home games to Drake in consecutive seasons -- 13-9 on Sept. 22, 1979, and 41-22 on Oct. 11, 1980.

The Buffs finished the 1980 season 1-10, including a 42-3 home loss to Kansas in front of an announced crowd of 24,187.

Chuck Fairbanks, who left the New England Patriots to coach CU to a 7-26 record from 1979-81, was no doubt feeling the heat from diehard Buffs supporters.

But during the era, ESPN was a fledgling network that televised body building and the internet was not available to the public.

"If I had it to do over again, I probably wouldn't have left New England," Fairbanks told the Denver Post in 2010. "My years at Oklahoma were fantastic. So was my time in professional football. We took over a franchise that was down and built it into a quality NFL team.

"I have good memories of the University of Colorado. Of all the places I've been, Boulder was our favorite place to live."

Bill McCartney was hired just before the 1982 season and had a 14-34-1 record four games into his fifth season at CU.

In 1984, athletic director Bill Marolt gave McCartney a contract extension in the middle of a 1-10 season. A move like that would be unheard of in today's impatient win-now sports culture.

The Buffs were able to rally from an 0-4 start in 1986 with six consecutive wins to earn a berth to the Bluebonnet Bowl. McCartney used the momentum to win the Big 8 in 1989 (11-0) and the national championship in 1990 (11-1-1).

The now beloved "Coach Mac" retired after the memorable 11-1 1994 season, which included "The Catch" in Michigan, the Heisman Trophy for Rashaan Salaam and the Thorpe Award for Chris Hudson.

When Rick Neuheisel, who was 20-4 during his first two seasons as head coach and 13-10 over his final two seasons, left CU in the middle of the night for Washington, the program turned to Gary Barnett to return the Buffs to dominance.

In 2001, the Buffs won the Big 12 championship and played in the Fiesta Bowl. Barnett coached CU to four North Division titles in his seven seasons.

But athletic director Mike Bohn decided to go in a different direction after the Buffs' 70-3 loss to eventual national champion Texas in the 2005 Big 12 championship game.

"I think a lot of things were revealed in the sense of the performance of the team, of the swagger of the program, of a sense of confidence, drive and determination that maybe had come off our shield a little bit," Bohn explained at the time of his reasoning for firing Barnett. "I thought it was important for us to bring that swagger back."

Five years after CU's Big 12 championship, the program received national attention for all the wrong reasons once again when the Dan Hawkins era began with a 19-10 loss to Montana State on Sept. 2, 2006.

Fortunately for "Hawk," Twitter had only been launched in March of that year and had not caught on in the college football world yet.

The Buffs finished 2-10. Hawkins was finished after compiling a 19-39 record over five seasons.

"So it brings to close the Hawk chapter," Hawkins said at his farewell press conference. "But hopefully it's the opening of the national championship chapter that is right around the corner because there is a lot of great things in Colorado and Boulder and the University of Colorado. And hopefully all those things come to light."

When Bohn started looking for Hawkins' replacement, a not-so silent fan majority cried out again for a "Buff" to be hired.

On Dec. 6, 2010, Embree -- who helped lay a solid foundation for McCartney as a CU tight end from 1982-86 and served as an assistant at his alma mater from 1993-2002 -- was named as the program's 24th head coach.

"Jon Embree is a great hire for the University of Colorado at a great time in our history," chancellor Phil DiStefano declared. "Jon was a legendary Buff who embodied the best of CU's values on and off the field. I believe his achievements as a student-athlete, a coach, and a person will combine to lead our program into a new era of success. We are excited to welcome him home."

Embree knew the first year of his homecoming, which was also the program's first season in the Pac-12, would be difficult. The Buffs finished 3-10 but snapped a grueling 24-game, out-of-state losing streak with a 17-14 victory at Utah on Nov. 25, 2011.

Feeling good about the momentum the returning players took into the offseason and a talented 2012 recruiting class, Embree stated for the record that CU's goal this fall is to earn a bid to a bowl game.

The Buffs haven't been to the postseason since the 2007 Independence Bowl and haven't won a bowl game since beating Texas-El Paso in the 2004 Houston Bowl.

A 22-17 loss to Colorado State in the Rocky Mountain Showdown on Sept. 1 was not the start Embree was looking for.

"I was asked, do I think we can still go to a bowl game. Yeah, I do," Embree said last week. "And our players still do. You have to get back up and you have to get going again. The thing about this game, you fool around and you win a game you're not supposed to win, too. It happens all the time."

And then on Saturday the Buffs lost a game they're never supposed to lose, although FCS wins over BCS programs are occurring with more frequency.

Michigan lost to Appalachian State in 2007. Virginia lost to William & Mary in 2009. Virginia Tech lost to James Madison in 2010.

North Dakota State beat Minnesota last season and brought CSU back to reality on Saturday.

Sacramento State beat Oregon State last season and stunned CU on Saturday.

"I guess the level of frustration is really high," said Webb, who transferred to CU from Kansas in July and won the starting quarterback job midway through camp. "Emotions are that of being really pissed off."

A choleric CU fan base has already suffered through six consecutive losing seasons for the first time since 1979-84. The program has never had seven losing seasons in a row.

That's going to be put to the test over the next 10 weeks.

As will Embree's resolve.

"Yes," Embree said when asked if he thought the Buffs would be further along 15 games into his regime. "For whatever reason the team that's practicing isn't necessarily coming consistently to Saturday. That's one of the things I need to look at and figure out why."

Follow Ryan on Twitter: @RyanThorburn