Friday, June 02, 2006

Barnett's Legacy: A Pool of Red Ink

Former Colorado coach Gary Barnett may have left Boulder a rich man, but he left the Buffaloes swimming in red ink. The athletic department will be given an $8 million loan to help it out of a budget hole created in big part by the $3.1 million buyout of Barnett and the $700,000 Colorado had to pay Boise State to free Dan Hawkins to become the new coach of the Buffaloes. Ouch! So if our math is correct, athletic director Mike Bohn's decision to fire Barnett ended up costing $3.8 million. In Bohn's defense, he inherited much of the money problems from former athletic director Dick Tharp, who overestimated donor contributions and other revenue sources. But it really began to fall apart when a series of controversies — from allegations of sexual assault by recruits to Barnett's disparaging comments about a female kicker — dragged the football team through the mud. Season ticket sales tumbled 6,000, then came the topper, a 70-3 loss to Texas in the Big 12 title game. The successful men's tennis program has since been cut, 12 positions in the athletic department will be eliminated and additional cuts are planned. To make matters worse, the regents just approved a 2.4% increase in tuition for in-state undergrads and a 9% increase for grad students.


Jacob said...

Maybe if there hadn't been a rash of completely unsubstantiated rape allegations from drunk girls and bitter ex players there wouldn't have been this problem?

Sammy Joseph and Brian Calhoun wouldn't have transferred, and Colorado's recruiting classes wouldn't have been decimated.

Now they're going to lose even more money after firing Barnett and even further killing the ability of the program to recruit. This team could easily lose every game this season except their opener against perennial powerhouse Montana State.

Nebraska will embarass them too, which will only make matters worse.

As a Colorado fan I'm appalled at how the media and the administration handled a string of what ended up being by all objective measure fabricated rape allegations.

Duke may be getting more press, but Colorado's football program was the first to be destroyed by ridiculous claims and an overzealous media.

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