Jon Embree discusses recruiting

The first spring evaluation period of Colorado coach Jon Embree's tenure is winding down. Embree took some time to talk with us about how the Buffs are being received by recruits and high school coaches and what his plans are for the 2012 class. Get inside for more.

Do you have a pitch for Colorado football that you're giving to recruits?

Jon Embree: "I just tell them about opportunity. You've got an opportunity to be a part of something special. You have an opportunity from what we're doing in the weight room to what we're doing offensively and defensively to prepare you for a chance to play in the league. You've got a great opportunity to get a heck of a degree here in this environment.

"I really believe if you get a kid here to Boulder, like one recruit who was sitting here in my office as was out on that patio and up in the suites just looking out there, this place is special. A lot of the battle is just getting them here because they all say the same thing, 'I didn't know it was like this.' Once they see the place, it doesn't matter what other schools say about you because now they know the truth. They really know what it's like. They know the weather isn't that bad. You can what you want. It rains in Seattle. You might go 40-some straight days with it. You can't spin that. You can say it snows here and all that, but guess what? A kid comes here and it's 65 degrees, he's saying, 'Where is the snow?'It snows, but it snows up in the mountains. We're not Vail. That's the biggest battle, getting them here. If you get them here, you've got a great chance."

What does the remainder of your recruiting class look like in terms of the numbers and the positions you are emphasizing?

Embree: "We're targeting all positions. We're good at quarterback obviously, but we're going to target all positions. We've got to build depth. I'd like to get two, maybe three tight ends. Maybe three, possibly four receivers. As many d-linemen as we can get or want to come. Smae on offensive line. I think we will always go heavier in those areas any chance you can, just cause you need to. So we will do that. I think we will have three or four kids who will enroll early. So we have that ability (to count back)and we can go pretty big in this class, in the 28 range is what I'm guessing. So doing that, we can target a bunch.

"I feel good about where we are from a specialist standpoint. So I don't know if you go get another one unless something drastic happens. I got beat up for taking a kicker. So I don't have to worry about that one. I feel good about that. So that leaves DBs, guys that can play corner and safety, upgrade our speed, all those things. This is great for us because we're in a situation where we can address a lot of needs in that we have the ability to do it from a numbers standpoint to go ahead and do that stuff.

Right now there seems to be a lot of uncertainty around the Colorado program because there has been a coaching change and recruits might not know exactly what to expect here. Some of those recruits are also holding offers from places like Oregon, which just played for the national title. How do you handle that issue problem and get the high-level recruits to want to come here versus going somewhere where they might feel like they have a better feel for what the future holds?

Embree: "That issue has reared its head a couple times, but not as much as you might think. There are some guys who are jersey chasers. They just want to go be on the team and then you`ve got guys who want to go make something happen and be a part of something special. Those are the kids you kind of get a feel for as you go through this process. They`re waiting to see how many offers they get and then go to the highest ranked school at the end. What they don`t understand is college football is cyclical. Where was Wisconsin three years ago?

"Two years ago Iowa almost put itself in position for a national title. So what these kids don't understand is, you might show up on that campus and you might be part of nothing. But when you get guys with the same mindset of coming to build something, I think it's a little bit like you have a better chance of sustaining yourself. What happens is, sometimes these programs get these kids that I call them they're takers. They have their hand out. 'What are you going to do for me? What about that? What about this?' Instead of saying, 'What can I come do to add and build on the tradition that you have there?' Those are the kinds of kids we're looking for. We're going to face this issue. Once we get it going, we're still going to have that issue. Colorado is never going to be a logo school where kids are just going to be flocking to come here.

"I remember in 94 and through those times and those stretches where we were recruiting kids and Texas was down, we were still unable to get three or four kids out of Texas. They still wanted to go to Texas even though we beat Texas like five or six consecutive times at that point. I remember Andre Gurode sitting there thinking about Texas A&M and I was sitting there saying, 'God, we smoked these dudes. They haven't done nothing since you've been in high school. Our track record is significantly better.' But we still had to bust our butt to get him. Same with Cedric Cormier. I remember sitting at his school and his coach won't let me talk to him cause he's like, 'No, he's going to Texas.' I'm going, 'God, what are these kids seeing?' So there is always going to be that unknown about us no matter how much we win, no matter what we get going. You're still going to have to battle that. But that's OK because I think going through that process helps you filter out the takers from the guys who want to really do something special."

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