In the time that Darrin Chiaverini has been on the coaching staff at Colorado, he’s seen a lot of changes around him.
Since being hired Jan. 1, 2016, he’s worked for three head coaches and with four quarterbacks coaches. So far, he’s been impressed with new quarterbacks coach Danny Langsdorf, who was hired in March by new head coach Karl Dorrell.
“Me and Danny hit it off right away when he first got hired,” Chiaverini said. “We had many conversations talking about putting this offense together and what I thought we could we could do just from being around our personnel for the last five years. … Me and Danny have had a lot of candid conversations about the quarterbacks, about offensive philosophy and where we want to take this thing, and I think it’s going to be a really good working relationship.”
Chiaverini is starting his fifth year on the coaching staff, while Langsdorf comes to Boulder with a wealth of experience from which the quarterbacks and the Buffs, in general, can benefit.
Langsdorf, who turned 48 on Sunday, has coached for 23 years, including nine seasons (2005-13) as offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach at Oregon State and three years (2015-17) in the same role at Nebraska. He’s mentored the all-time leading passers at Oregon State (Sean Mannion) and Nebraska (Tommy Armstrong Jr.) and sent four quarterbacks to the NFL.
While he’s the fourth position coach for senior Sam Noyer and junior Tyler Lytle, Langsdorf hopes he can help them – along with freshman Brendon Lewis – succeed with the Buffs.
“I’m trying to teach them a system, but there’s definitely things that they have gotten from their past coaches that that they can draw from,” Langsdorf said. “Those are good experiences. It’s the same thing that I’ve been able to draw from my experiences and teach a little different and coach a certain way. I think that’s all good.”
Langsdorf, in fact, has had more change than the Buffs’ quarterbacks in recent years. He’s worked at Nebraska, Oregon, Fresno State, UNLV and now CU since the start of the 2017 season.
His experience also includes four years in the NFL and three seasons with the Canadian Football League’s Edmonton Eskimos (1999-2001).
“It’s the greatest job I’ve ever had,” he said of his time in the CFL. “I really enjoyed that, and that was early on in my career and I think that was great. You’re talking about late 90s, early 2000 and we were running spread; we’re running zone read spread and obviously playing with 12 is a little different, but we were in spread sets quite a bit.
“It gave me an element of spreading the field and understanding spacing and things in the passing game that’s been very valuable. I think just that experience with a different style and the amount of throwing that you have to do in that league has helped me throughout my career.”
The most experienced play-caller on the staff, Langsdorf will take a back seat in that department at CU. Chiaverini is back in that role, but will benefit from Langsdorf’s experience.
Langsdorf, meanwhile, is excited to work with a new group of quarterbacks, as well as Chiaverini.
“We’ve had really good conversations,” Langsdorf said. “A lot of similar thoughts and then some different backgrounds with each other, so we’re able to kind of mesh the two and talk through some things. I’ve had a chance to look back at some of the things he’s done in his history and I’ll show some things that I thought has been successful. We’ve talked through those and tried to implement what we think will work best for our guys.
“That’s kind of the fun part of being a new staff that I’ve always enjoyed. You get a little bit of an idea philosophy-wise or what a guy has had success with in the past and you try to use some of those things and then bring some of your ideas to the table and you kind of put it all together and hope it sticks. So I do enjoy that a lot of this process. I think it’s kind of an exciting time.”