If you’re expecting Dan Lanning to walk back his comments about Colorado this offseason, stop now. Before the season started, Colorado made headlines for two reasons. 1, they hired Deion Sanders. 2, they left the Pac-12 for the Big 12.
After CU’s departure, Lanning dissed the program, saying, “I’m trying to remember what they won to affect this conference, and I don’t remember. Do you remember them winning anything? I don’t remember them winning anything.” They were harsh words, but words that really couldn’t be denied either.
Before Sanders arrived in Boulder, Colorado was a dilapidated program. 2016 was their strongest year, but it was nothing but an anomaly for woes that started, ironically, after the 2001 Fiesta Bowl. Oregon kicked Colorado’s behind in that game in Tempe, and the Buffaloes’ trajectory went south fast.
Lanning stood his ground, though, amid all the discussion and buzz about the 3-0 Buffaloes. A reporter asked the Ducks head coach if he regretted his choice of words. Lanning said, “No. I don’t regret anything I’ve said for this program. At the end of the day, obviously I wasn’t talking about Deion’s team, I’m talking about the past and the future for our team.”
If nothing else, the only thing you could say was funny about it was that the Ducks fled the Pac-12 for the Big Tens shortly after those comments were made. Clearly, though, Lanning has shut a lid on it so that nothing blows up. The Pac-12 race is officially on this weekend as everyone is in full swing for conference play.
10th-ranked Oregon, 3-0, will meet 19th-ranked Colorado, also 3-0, this Saturday at Autzen Stadium in Eugene. The game will air on ABC at 3:30 p.m. Eastern.