Latest Headlines Chat replay: CU Buffs beat writer Brian Howell (Jan. 6, 2019) Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) Chat replay: CU Buffs beat writer Brian Howell (Jan. 6, 2019) By Brian Howell | email@example.com | Boulder Daily CameraPUBLISHED: January 6, 2020 at 10:38 a.m. | UPDATED: January 6, 2020 at 1:13 p.m.Buffzone.com beat writer Brian Howell takes your questions and leads discussion about CU sports today at Noon. That will do it for this week everybody. Great comments and questions, and always nice to get the passionate women's hoops fans involved! Have a great week!Yes, I believe they could sign a couple more.Brian - Does the football team have any more rooms to sign a player or two besides Clayton?First off, they've won 1 conference game this year, not 2. Second, I'm not sure who said they weren't as good as last year. I've said all along this season would be a better year and I think it will be. I think they can win 4-5-6 conference games and reach the WNIT. That would be a great step for this program.Wanted to share something with fellow participant NIT. A couple of years back a scholarship Volleyball player was on hand to support the CU Women's Basketball team. We got to talking, and she shared that most of the Volleyball players had a background in basketball, if not having played high level club even. I asked if the Volleyball played pickup with the Basketball team. She said they do play together. I asked who would win if they played a real game. She said the Basketball team would win, but that Volleyball could hang with them. This was when we had Zoe Correal, Bri Watts, Brecca Thomas, Kennedy Leonard, Monica Burich etc. I laughed. It was not a good sign of things to come. The Basketball teams should have been able to run the Volleyball team out of the gym, playing basketball. The women's basketball team went on to lose 81% of their conference games the next four years, and only won 2 conference games last year. They've already won that many this year. But they aren't as good? Sure.I think that's more of an impact on the 2021 class at this point.Big upset wins over Dayton and Oregon. This late into signing periods how does it work (if it ever does) when a team really surprises to get better recruits for the incoming class. Two big upsets like that and what is the timeline for when that impacts recruiting?I believe they had the full winter break.Did the football players get the full winter break, or were they back early to start winter weight trainingI don't think you'll have to worry about CU making the NCAA Tournament in women's hoops this year. They aren't ready for that jump yet.Brian I lost the key to my file cabinet. Too embarrassed to call RG. Remind me, with all automatic extensions we build into the contracts (unless CU or the coach gives notice) how many more years do we have Tad and JR Payne locked down for? CU announced Tad's annual extension publicly. Didn't hear anything the last couple of years about JR. It will be awkward if this team makes the NCAA tournament with JR not being renewed. Massey ratings have CU with a better than 50% chance to win 4 additional Pac-12 games and a better than 40% chance to win 4 more on top of that. No women's CU team, save one with Chucky, has ever won more than 6 Pac-12 games. We've only won 14 Pac-12 games the past FOUR YEARS. JR Payne has already won as many Pac-12 games season as we managed all of last season. The idea that we could potentially compete and win 10 Pac-12 games this season is unreal. If we make the WNIT or NCAA tournaments should I type up a contract and give JR Payne a long-term extension, or hold off and let her coach out her contract? I know RG has straddled CU with a lot of "dead money" recently for Lappe, MacIntyre, etc. but that's all his fault not mine so we are being more conservative. What should I do?I don't know who it is. But, I also don't think there's been much progress made since Lappe left. Last 3 years with Lappe, they were 6-12, 6-12 and 2-16 in conference (14-40). In the 3 full years since she left, they are 5-13, 5-13 and 2-16 (12-42).Brian, What’s with this guy getting on every week and attacking past WBB players and slamming the progress made since Lappe leftSeems about right for the Buffs.Oregon fell to No. 9 in AP Poll. CU is at No. 25I agree with you. Yes, I do see hope for national exposure. When the next round of contracts comes up, I would imagine that will be a high priority for the Pac-12.IN RE: pac12 finances. it is true that the pac12 won't rival the population base or the dense fan base of those conferences. but, L. Scott failed to obtain national exposure. that has limited the pac12nets to a regional network. somehow, some way the pac12 needs to get national carriage. whomever is leading the conference for the negotiations and thereafter, that is job one and if said person doesn't get a national footprint the pac12 will continue to spiral downward. a P5 commissioner worth their paycheck should be able to accomplish that. do you see any hope for national exposure?That's all true. However, this is supposed to be a team that takes the next step. Last night was a disappointment.As much as tad can’t seem to solve the same problem every year - turnovers. And I agree with a previous poster that he doesn’t seem to have enough set plays in the bag on offense when the buffs seem rattled or in a rut to go to, but one thing the announcers said last night that I always remind myself of is cu has had 10 30 win seasons in 100 years of basketball and tad is responsible for six of them. He may not win us a championship and he may fail in some maddening ways but thank you for making basketball relevant and watchable for buffs fans tad!I like him a lot, too, but I agree with you that at times, he makes some costly mistakes. I'll take the good with the bad with him, though. Far more good.I really like Wright IV, but at times he tries too hard..his turnovers in the two home losses were costly. Had 6 TO's against OSU.It's a classic Kiffin move. He doesn't care what people think. ... As for Mike MacIntyre, he's no longer at Ole Miss. The moves Kiffin made meant that MacIntyre is looking for work.What are your thoughts on scum bag lane kiffin hiring scumbag durkin on his staff?! Kiffin is just never going to “get it” but I can’t beleieve that ole miss will add another controversial coach to pair with an equally controversial one but I guess I should not be surprised at all. As d coordinator I’m surprised that mike MacIntyre would compromise himself with durkin as mac must have some day in his hire no?They could bring someone in during the summer. That was the plan for Davis Webb in 2016.Whoops meant grad transfer QB!Brian, if current QBs look a little green at the close of Spring ball what’s the latest we can get a grad transfer WB?4-5 yearsHow long do I stick around CU before taking a job in the SEC if I get CU nationally ranked?I agree they shouldn't lose that game at home. I think you're a little high on those rankings. They came in at No. 25 today. Beat OSU and maybe they are 21-23. At this point, being at No. 25, if they go out and beat Utah next week, they can jump to 22-23. Once you're in the 25, you have the attention and it's about winning.NO way should lose that game to OSU here. If we win we are ranked in the teen's, now probably only around 24th. IF we win that game and UTAH next week at home, we'd be high teens in ranking and get really good NCAA seed. Now we lost the momentum of beating a top 5 team, and no more like that on the schedule to pull us up in national recognition.Yes, I think the NIT is possible. They basically need 3 more wins to get there. If they are .500 or better by the end of the Pac-12 Tourney, they can get to the NIT. Win 3 more and they secure at least a 15-15 record.Brian I think the WBB is improved from last year but not yet where they were the prior 2 seasons. That being said I think NIT is possible, thoughts?I agree. they are building up that line in a hurry. Could be fun to watch those guys.A d line of Alfano, Lang, salemi, Johnson and working in Harris, berry and some of the older guys could be downright special and one of the tallest and heavier lines around too. With healthy dvd and more depth the d could be something specialBethel practiced with the Buffs this past season, so yes, he's available. Gonzalez could be corner or safety. But at corner, they'll also have Trujillo and Luckett, who they like, and they should get Blackmon and Miller back from injury. There's also Bethel and Striker.Brian - Still seems like we are lacking bodies in the D secondary and was disappointed we could not attract a highly rated prospect given there could be immediate play time. Gonzales is a safety but maybe the two older kids that are coming, Bethel and Striker, is all they need. Bethel is eligible, correct? Thoughts?You're not comparing apples to apples. No. 1, that was a tough non-conference schedule in Leonard's freshman year, and you might remember that Washington had a girl named Kelsey Plum on their team. she was pretty good. That CU team was also starting two freshman guards and had another freshman as a partial starter. This year, I know the 12-0 start was nice, but the Buffs had a pretty easy schedule until last week. And depth, yes, it showed up against that easy non-conference schedule. They don't have the depth to match the Pac-12. Oregon's 4th option was the best player at USC last year. Oregon and OSU, and UCLA and Stanford, etc., are bringing players off the bench that would start at CU.It's very tough to be a Freshman PG in Pac-12 women's basketball. I think fans forget our recent history. This conference has the best talent (top-to-bottom) in all of the NCAA. Very difficult to win as a Freshman in NCAAW Division One, let alone the Pac-12. Case in point, our first 13 games with our last true Freshman (Leonard) starting at PG we lost non-conference games to Kentucky, Florida, Colorado State, Long Beach State, Missouri, and Wyoming to finish with a terrible 5-6 non-conference record. Followed by Pac-12 losses to Washington and Washington State for a 5-8 record in the first 13 games. Sherrod has played the #2 and #3 nationally ranked teams and has a 11-2 record in her first 13 games. Comparing apples to apples, we're better. As for depth, remind me of how many different Buffs have led this team in scoring this year?I think he does for the most part. Again last night, just one of those nights where it fell apart.Shane hasa 3 for 3 on 3 pointers, plus a layup at half time. Coach should say "Shane this is your night. Take good shots and I think you can get 30 points!" Instead we dont feed him the 2nd half until it is desperation time and everyone is tight on their shooting. Again, I like Tad but he needs help in getting his players to be their best.The good thing is that there's still plenty of time to recover from that loss.Love Tad and want him to be a better coach, not just a simple 22 game winner where we plateau. The kids are better than that. BTW, if I teach my whole class and none of them learn, its not bad kids but bad teaching. WHY couldn't some of the players do the right thing to break that press?He's a 2019 recruit and a transfer. I do believe that 247Sports factors him in on the 2019 classThe football recruiting services do not seem to be factoring in Alfano into their rankings of our class. Why? I thought he’s considered part of our haul?Last night was nothing like that football game. That football game was an awful OSU team coming back from down 31-3 to win its only conference game of the year. This is a talented OSU basketball team and an 11-point deficit with 7 minutes to go is not impossible to rally from. Both are disappointing, for sure, but the football loss was way worse.Last night inexplicable failure was nearly as painful as watching the football team lose a 31-0 lead on Oregon state!! How can lowly Oregon state inflict so much pain on both of our programs!!??Agreed. No question last night was frustrating for the BuffsPatton used to sub 5 whole new players when he wanted to shake up the game. Now he was a great recruiter but not a great coach, but Tad could learn from that. If starters can't break the press you taught, then huddle with the 2nd string, show them what the starters are missing andthen put 3 new guys in to handle the pressure. While the starters sit you coach them up and then can return them to the game. YOU DON"T JUST HOPE itthings will change!I don't know if Fields or Martell were comparable, but both got to play right away. In the case of Martell, that seemed like a transfer made solely for playing time and he got to play right away. Fields, there was more to it, but I think the main reason he left was because he wasn't going to start in 2019 at Georgia. Both guys wanted to start, both guys left and both guys got to play right away. The thing with the NCAA is that there's seemingly no rhyme or reason to what they do. I've seen very legit cases where guys (or women) had to sit. So, it's hard to tell on Alfano.Hi, Brian. As a Buffs fan, we tend to expect the worst. In Alfano's situation, you mentioned Josh Fields and Tate Martell as comparable examples that they were able to get the transfer rule waives. Am I justified in a fear that the NCAA will find some way to stick it to the Buffs on this and keep Alfano off the field this fall?Totally agree. There are those games now and then when you can point to coaching, and that is one of them. I do think players could have handled it better, too, but it was a bad 6-7 minutes.That was a god awful meltdown for the buffs last night and it totally falls on Boyle. He is a really good coach and we’re lucky to have him but how can he not have any plan to handle a switch to 1-3-1?? Yes players have to execute but that was an abomination!! They dominated osu and then had no clue how to get the ball up court or penetrate that defense!!? Come on.Good points, but I also think guys on the floor need to step up and play better at times, too.Yad says we weren't playing enough defense, yet hs sits Eli, his best guard defender, the whole game. Tad doesn't have enough set plays for his half court offense. When the kids get rattled you need those to stop a 24-3 run, and he doesn't have enough.See a previous answer where I went through that.As far as PAC12 fb teams, who takes a step back & who a step forward?It was missing last night, for sure. They've shown it in other games, including against Dayton and Oregon. Last night for whatever reason, I agree, it was a system failure at the end.Hi Brian, about last night ... on the KOA broadcast, it seemed the announcers relaxed when the lead hit 11-12 @ 6 minutes. it also seems that the team let down, too. also, the buffs were not prepared (as in practiced against it) to deal with the osu 1-3-1 zone and the traps. it seemed like a complete system failure: coaching; prep; poise. i really like this team but something is missing from their makeup it seems, perhaps the expression 'killer instinct' explains it?I don't think Tad is a perfect coach, by any means, and certainly that's one game you could possibly put on him. I don't think there are many in his tenure you can put on him, though. That was pretty disappointing, though.I really like Tad, but he needs some mentoring to be a better coach. Don't say how far he has taken us, it how much further this team should go. If we had the AZ head coach they never lose that game. Tad doesn't make enough in game adjustments, neither in his line-up nor in coaching strategy.I do think the defense has a chance to be a lot better, with or without Alfano playing. I like the young talent on DL, I like their LBs. They have talent in the secondary if they can stay healthy. I don't see them relying on true freshmen like they did this year. So, yes, I do think the Buffs will be better defensively and that should make them better as a team. But, you still have to score and they need to find a QB.Hi Brian - Seems to me that the Buffs will be better next simply by virtue of having a better Defense. Alfonzo could totally help the equation for sure but we should be better or as good as any position last year. Agree? No?Utah takes a step back, but not a big one. They'll still be a top 2-3 team in the South. Biggest jump in the South - and this might not be a popular opinion - could come from USC. There is so much talent and Slovis will be a sophomore. ASU has a chance to take that step forward, too. In the North, I find it hard to believe that Stanford will be down very long, so I look for them to take a step forward. Cal could be a lot better, too.WTE 2020 football predictions Part 2: Which Pac-12 teams take a step back & teams take a step forward?I don't know who is representing him or if they are even at that point yet. My guess is that he'll be able to play this next year. They will play up the story of his grandmother's health issues, and that she passed away in November, and they should focus on that. That's was a real struggle for him.Hi Brian, Do you have any idea on the name of the lawyer that is representing Alfano in his appeal? Also, make an educated guess on the odds that Alfano gets to suit up this fall. Tks.Yes, a couple of them did. I didn't look to see how they finished up in that game. I watched long enough to see Harris make his decisionI think a few of the Buff signees played in the recent all-star game. Do you know how any of them performed?I've liked that team all year. I stuck with them at 1 most of the year and I still think they win the national title, but bumped them to 2 only because LSU's resume is pretty darn impressive. ... As for the CFP, I would expand it to 8. I'd like to see a playoff that includes each Power 5 conference champ, the top-ranked team from the Group of 5, and two at-large teams (the top 2 ranked teams not among that previous 6).Seems like you were spot on with keeping Clemson as top 1-2 team throughout the season! Are you in favor of expanding CFP? If so, you think it should 8 teams? Or 6 with top 2 getting bye?Oregon was good enough. Ducks messed it up by losing at ASU. I was disappointed by Utah and I agree with you, it looked a lot like that CU team in 2016. I think both teams probably took the Alamo bowl a little less seriously than their opponent.Utah sure tanked it in the last two games...reminds me of the 2016 CU team. Scott shouldn't complain about PAC12 teams not getting into the CFP...teams aren't good enough.thank you very much. I appreciate it! I definitely wanted to find a different angle to the Salaam story than just focusing on his tragic death. He impacted a lot of people.I really liked your story on Salaam several weeks ago. Really well researched and a story worth telling. One of the best stories I've read here. If others haven't read it, you should. Same with the Alfano article.You sure they are so much better? They also got beat by 58 points at Oregon on Friday. I do think they are on the right track, but I'm not ready to say they are so much better than in recent years. They still lack overall depth/talent to beat the top teams in the Pac-12.