Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Bzdelik decision; Smith checking out

So is Jeff Bzdelik in or not at CU?

That seems to be the question. News reports are mixed.

If he accepts today, then the Buffs have found themselves the best potential leader in school history, even if he is not a lock to lead the program deep into NCAA Tournaments or even stay for years.

If he rejects CU, the Buffs will reel in pain, despite the public face they will put on. The fans will also start pointing fingers at athletic director Mike Bohn for not being able to close the deal in a seemingly one-man pool to replace the departed Ricardo Patton.

Bohn needs Bzdelik to be his man.

Smith wants the life

Colorado State 7-footer Jason Smith wants the NBA dollars and the life that goes with it, declaring for the June draft after averaging 16.8 points and 10.1 rebounds per game.

And with his performance this past season, this space is going to share what you already know -- Smith will stay in the draft, get selected in the first round and make the Rams' fans proud. While you can't blame him for realizing employers are ready to pay large for his services, it is, like CU losing Chauncey Billups early, disappointing to realize how he could have further made his mark on the program and in the record books.

If you're a fan of Smith's what would be best for him would be getting picked by a team that fits his skills, will help him get court time next season and be patient over the next few years.

By the way, this just in -- new CSU coach Tim Miles has told his wife, Kari, he needs a hug.

And Kleenex.

All is well now that Denver has appeased gold-digging bly

Now that the Broncos have bought Dre' Bly's love with $ 33 million, he is all big with the sweet nothings about the organization and city.


Saying all the right things now, how it was about going home and not about disliking Denver.

Losing Darrent Williams' talent in the offseason was extremely difficult, losing his presence and personality as a teammate to violence leaves a gaping emotional wound. Bly's acquisition and signing will help the former. The latter will take time.

Coach Mike Shanahan has done his best to keep his cornerbacks a strength on the defense.

Now all he has to do is find himself some pass rushers to protect them.

The more things change the more they stay the same

O.K., the Rockies have decided to keep general manager Dan O'Dowd and skipper Clint Hurdle for two more years. Not all that surprising here but from an ownership perspective, why do it now? Are other franchises giving off heavy signals that they are going to sign O'Dowd and Hurdle away from Colorado? And if so (and that's not reality), would the Rockies fall any farther as an organization if those two left?

So why did it happen?

The farm system.

It's is one of the best in baseball and some of the past minor leaguers have already become solid professionals (Matt Holliday, Garrett Atkins and to a lesser extent, Brad Hawpe in the lineup, Jeff Francis as a starter and Manny Corpas in the bullpen).

More are being pegged as very good (Troy Tulowitzki, Chris Iannetta and Jeff Baker).

O'Dowd is not flawless in making trades although this space is a fan of the Kaz Matsui and Ramon Ramirez acquisitions but his work in picking and growing talent is what earned him an extension. Hurdle stays because he is committed to playing that young talent and them blossoming.


Here's a little memory recall for CU fans, even if it is now in the jersey of another school. In Paul Forrester's article at, Texas A & M's standout guard Acie Law IV gets one high compliment, getting compared to former Buff and current Detroit Piston Chauncey Billups.

Former Colorado prep still not impressing

What's a guy have to do to get recognized around here?

Nick Fazekas
packs up, leaves Colorado for Nevada and dominates and yet the NBA scouts just don't know what to think of his game. Actually, it's not his game, it's his body (he doesn't turn on grown men paid to look at it) and his apparent association with that condition called white men can't jump. If I'm an NBA general manager picking late in the first round and I learned Fazekas had the desire to be be a champion in his heart, I'd still take him based on his size and skill and wait to look smart in a few years. The question is, does Fazekas have that will to denounce his critics.

Not smart

Can't believe I'm coughing up space for a punter but they need love too, right?

Seems Denver didn't learn you can't trust Todd Sauerbrun. The Broncos have signed him to an offer sheet but New England has a week to match the offer sheet.

Hey, Sauerbrun has a fantastic leg and when he was being a good boy, was a solid special teams player but he's had personal problems in Carolina and Denver, the last straw in town being violating the NFL’s policy on anabolic steroids and related substances after testing positive for ephedra.

Think it's great we give people second chances in this life. Heaven knows we all need them but Sauerbrun, for all his remorse, has a track record of letting people down. Denver is merely his latest enabler.

Layer and McKay teaming up

Former CSU basketball coaches Ritchie McKay and Dale Layer will work together again in an attempt to make it happen at Liberty University, with Layer signing on as McKay's assistant.

It's a fall, stature wise, for both men to end up at the Virginia Christian school but it says here they are going to end up being winners at that level and might resurface in a few years at a more recognizable program.


The Nuggets played defense in the fourth quarter and got All-Star performances out of Marcus Camby (21 points, 20 rebounds and six blocks), Allen Iverson (20 points and 10 assists) and Carmelo Anthony (31 points, 15 free throw makes) to beat the Lakers in Los Angeles. This is still a team deficient in defense, sharing the ball and other unselfishness but winning in Los Angeles is not something this franchise has done much of in years so the victory is significant, if only in that regard.

The Rockies get seven ace-like seven innings from Jeff Francis and help from Tulowitzki and Iannetta in the bottom of the 11th inning to steal a game from Arizona. The Rockies can only be competitive if Francis can consistently deliver outings like this and the team can find two others who can almost do what he does. The bullpen showed depth and ability.

The Avalanche top Calgary, 4-3, as the ageless Joe Sakic and the young buck Peter Stastny light the lamp. Still shake my head at seeing Alex Tanguay in a Flames' sweater.

Trippin' the nation

So could Pat Summit relate to young men and could she recruit them in the first place to set herself up for coaching them to the NCAA Tournament consistently? It won't happen at her age and it would be a transition but if she scored a couple of recruiting victories, why couldn't she be a big winner. Getting players to take a chance on her would be the monumental challenge.

Dana Altman accepting the Arkansas job then returning to Creighton has to sting Razorback fans but it isn't an unprecedented move by a coach. In the end, Altman had buyer's remorse and decided his heart was with the Blue Jays. He's human, he's honest, Arkansas will get over it. Who's next for the Hogs? Everyone is turning down that job. It could be a great fit for someone but there have to be serious problems or else it wouldn't be treated as if it were poison.

The Postman

First in today is Craig, talking this site's color choice and then the future of CU hoops.

"Truth, I have your back...maybe there is a rainbow scheme (Power to All!). Is Coach Bz the Messiah for Buff BB? Not sure, but the "Improvement Bar" is pretty low after this season. What are your thoughts about next season now that Bohn and Bz are %@*?"

WSN: First of all, Power to All sounds like the new slogan for this space if Craig will sell the rights to it -- I like it. Hmmm....rainbow scheme. As for Bzdelik, well, you're money on that comment as the improvement bar is so low that Dennis Hopper or Samuel Jackson could coach this team next season and be appreciated. Will say that Bzdelik (see above) has great potential and the ego to drive him to succeed.

Personally, I would have looked at, at least, a handful of other candidates that I think I could have convinced to be interested in the job but if Bzdelik is the one that Bohn can't go to sleep without thinking of, then he has to sell out to get him. With talent on board, all an accomplished coach would need is a little playable size and salesmanship to make this a postseason team in 2007-08.

Next up is Kevin, who is also working on my campaign when it comes to the colors I paint the walls in this place.

"I, for one, think that it's your blog and you should do what you will with it, even if I think it should have red nowhere near it. Either way, if you keep writing them, I'll keep reading them."

WSN: Kevin, red is a power color, brother, you know that. I try to forget teams that wear it like Nebraska, Utah, the Kansas City Chiefs, Houston Rockets, whoever. I'll keep writing because that's my game. By the way, went looking for your writing at but not sure what 'hood you write on. Send it my way, I'm interested.

Reasons why

O.K., why should or why would Bzdelik leave Air Force for CU?

  1. The Big 12 is the place to test your ego and courage against other big heads
  2. Win eight games and be considered improvement, win 20 and get a parade
  3. Be a trailblazer and do what others consider unlikely or impossible -- make CU a basketball school
  4. Be the program's James Naismith and teach the game
  5. Have the court named after you for making basketball the in-thing to attend


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