No. 11 Colorado vs. No. 13 Oklahoma St.
What: Valero Alamo Bowl
When: 7 p.m., Dec. 29
Where: Alamodome, San Antonio
TV/radio: ESPN / 850 AM, 94.1 FM
Between recruiting, a bowl game press conference and a college football awards show, Colorado head football coach Mike MacIntyre has been a busy man this week.
It might be rough on his sleep schedule, but it’s been great for the Buffaloes, as he travels around the country talking about the resurgent football program.
“It’s extremely important,” MacIntyre said Thursday during an Alamo Bowl press conference in San Antonio. “It’s a lot better than sitting home, for sure. It’s exciting for our program and does get our name out there.”
The Buffaloes (10-3) — ranked No. 10 in the College Football Playoff and No. 11 in the Associated Press — will take on Oklahoma State (9-3, No. 12 CFP, No. 13 AP) in the Alamo Bowl on Dec. 29.
MacIntyre and his CU assistants have been on the road recruiting this week. He then went to San Antonio for Thursday’s press conference, and had to be in Atlanta for The Home Depot College Football Awards show on Thursday night. At the awards show, he will accept the Home Depot Coach of the Year award.
By this weekend, the Buffs will get back on the practice field. For CU, it’s the first bowl appearance since 2007, and to reach a high caliber bowl against a quality opponent brings even more attention.
“This game being televised on a Thursday night, national television against a great opponent, it will be exceptional for our football program and for our school,” MacIntyre said.
MacIntyre is one of many in the CU community mourning the loss of former Buffs running back Rashaan Salaam, who passed away Monday night at the age of 42.
“Rashaan always had a great smile,” MacIntyre said of the 1994 Heisman Trophy winner. “I always loved talking to Rashaan and being around him. He meant a tremendous amount to our program.
“We have a locker that we’ve always had in our locker room that is Rashaan Salaam’s locker from him winning the Heisman. It means a great deal to our program. A lot of our guys know him. Definitely a sad day losing Rashaan. I choose to think of him with his big smile, his great personality.”
Renewing a rivalry
The Alamo Bowl will be CU’s first game against a Big 12 Conference opponent since leaving the conference in 2011. CU and Oklahoma State became conference foes in 1960, and they’ve squared off 46 times overall.
Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy was a quarterback for the Cowboys from 1986-89, taking part in four games against the Buffs, going 2-2. As a head coach, Gundy is 2-1 against the Buffs.
“I go all the way back to the Big 8, sadly enough,” Gundy said. “When I was coming out, through the ’90s, (the Buffs) were winning a lot of games. The Buffalo, what it means to college football, it’s pretty cool.
“The world we live in with these millennials that we coach, they follow things for about two days then they move on to something new. We probably have to remind them of that (old rivalry).”
In comparing CU to the Cowboys’ opponents, Gundy said CU’s defensive style probably most resembles that of TCU. But, he said, “(We) feel like this could be the best secondary that we may have faced as a group throughout the year.” … CU is looking to become the first team to lose the Pac-12 title game and then win a bowl game. … Like MacIntyre, Gundy was mentioned as a possible candidate at Baylor. The Bears filled that job with Temple’s Matt Rhule. “I’m fully committed to Oklahoma State,” Gundy said.
Brian Howell: firstname.lastname@example.org, on Twitter: @BrianHowell33.