Gary Barnett, Athletic Director Dick Tharp, former CU players and current captains were all at the Denver Center for Performing Arts. The rally took place outside before a crowd of around 1,000 Buff fans and then Coach Barnett spoke to the Denver Buff Club at a luncheon.
During his speech, Coach Barnett announced the new slogan for the Buffs 2002 season: The Three H's: Humble, Hungry and Hunter.
Humble: Coach Barnett said the best thing to come from CSU having already played a game was that CU players got to watch their game against Virginia. The Buffs were "humbled" by what they saw from CSU and realized that the Rams are one tough and physical team. Barnett said that Bradley Van Pelt was one of the toughest QBs he has ever seen but joked about his name. "Brad, Bradley, whatever his name is, the coached joked, I don't know too many quarterbacks named Bradley." Barnett also joked about the fact CSU did not give CU a game tape, which is their choice, but they "got a very nice TV recording of it."
Hungry: Since the final whistle blew in the Fiesta Bowl back in January, Barnett said that the players that did not move onto the NFL or were lost to graduation have been "hungry" to get back on the field. He said it all starts with the opening game but the players were hungry to get back on the field and back to the Fiesta Bowl.
Hunter: Barnett said his team would not take a passive defense of the Big 12 title but rather would have the attitude of a "hunter". He said the Buffs are ready to defend and will bring the attitude to do so.
Other notes from Barnett's speech:
- He said that the team is focused and aware that they have lost their last three season openers. He said that during the summer QB Craig Ochs made it clear that the Buffs main focus is to win game number one.
- Although the Buffs return 24 seniors, they will also be dressing 40 freshmen. He said "we will probably have 40 freshman watching the big TV screens because they have never seen one of those but I will have one coach designated to slapping them on the sideline."
- Coach Barnett praised several players including LB Sean Tuffs and DE Marques Harris. He said, "When it is all finished, Tuffs will be the best CU linebacker ever." He also said that they had to take Harris off the field during practice so they could actually throw the ball.
- The head coach said Jeremy Bloom will enter the season as the #4 WR and would see playing time. "He's going to be an exciting player and he won't have to wear (ski) boots on the field."
- The Buffaloes will wear black pants and white jerseys against CSU, as they are the visiting team.