Hawk Doesn't Expect Emotional Letdown

Inside, notes about the Colorado football program from Tuesday prior to the CU-Baylor game.

• Dan Hawkins has been talking to reporters about the Colorado Rockies since fall camp opened. At his Tuesday press conference, he wore a purple Rockies collared shirt. Hawkins said, though, he missed the decisive 13th inning of last night's Rockies win over the San Diego Padres. He had gone to bed. His son, Drew, came in and woke him up and told him the final score.

Hawkins has forged a friendship with Rockies skipper Clint Hurdle since coming to Boulder. Both have deserved reputations of swimming out of the mainstream.

Asked about the Rox' success, Hawkins said: "It speaks to the kind of guys they have on their team and the kind of guy Clint Hurdle is. Everybody wants to run him out of town at the start of the season, but that's pretty amazing what they put together. Guys just show up, put on their hard hat every day and go to work."

• Conventional wisdom says Colorado needs to guard against an emotional letdown this week as they face Baylor after a big win over Oklahoma. Hawkins said it's not difficult for him to keep from having that letdown. He also said he thinks the team is on the same page in that regard. He doesn't see that being a problem.

It's been his M.O. to say out of the valleys and off the mountain top — meaning keep an even keel when things seem bad, or when things seem great.

• Any notion of basking in the glow of Saturday's win over the formerly No. 3-ranked Sooners may have been squashed when the team met on Sunday. Rather than looking at film of the OU game right off the bat, they were treated to film of last year's triple-OT loss to Baylor.

When they finally did get around to looking at the OU game film, it was an edited version that highlighted the mistakes and where the team needs to improve.

Hawkins said there are a lot of details on special teams that need work. Really, he said cleaning up details all the way around are still the focus.

• Some Oklahoma players noted after losing in Boulder that Colorado was perhaps more physical than they expected.

When asked about that, Hawkins pointed to the tone set by strength coach Jeff Pitman since he came to Boulder. He also mentioned offensive line coach Jeff Grimes' work at developing a tough mentality on the offensive line.

Despite his reputation for playing a fast and loose style of football, Hawkins has always maintained you win in the long run by being good up front on both sides of the ball.

To that end, he said, "That's where you win and lose football games, up front. Our goal is to have one of the top O and D-lines in the country and to recruit those type of guys and develop that sort of mentality. That's where you win football games."

• It's no secret Colorado has eclipsed last year's team win total with a handful of walk-ons or former walk-ons in their lineup. The list includes LB R.J. Brown, PK Tyler Cope, WR Cody Crawford, LB Jake Duren, S D.J. Dykes, PR Chase McBride, WR Scotty McKnight and LB Jeff Smart.

As he has in the past, Hawkins explained how he's never closed a door on a player because he didn't meet a certain physical criteria. Instead, he's learned to believe in players' abilities, and has had good results.

"When you believe in the Chase McBrides and Scotty McKnights and Jeff Smarts and Jake Durens, those guys will walk through the door. But a lot of times we don't do that in life, we box people in and put them in categories. I just think there's a lot of things possible. And the human condition is open to great things if you're willing to believe in those people."

• Quarterback Cody Hawkins and some of his teammates lost track of their helmets after Kevin Eberhart kicked the winning field goal over OU on Saturday. But Hawkins said Tuesday J.T. Galloway and other equipment personnel weren't celebrating when fans rushed the field, they were working — hunting down helmets and securing other equipment. Hawkins' helmet was in his locker when he showed up Sunday.

• It's difficult to say how much coaches are playing up avenging last year's loss to Baylor as the team prepares to go to Waco this weekend. But last year's loss is on many players' minds.

"A lot of guys on the team are really excited to get a chance to play Baylor because of what happened last year," Cody Hawkins said. "We were kind of hitting a tough spot there and thought we had a chance to win and let it slip through our hands.

The guys have done an awesome job of forgetting about Oklahoma and getting ready for Baylor, partially because of that, and also because that's kind of the mentality we've tried to get going."

Besides trying correct mistakes, another thing the team can take from the OU game is confidence, Hawkins added.

Dykes echoed that when he said, "The thing we can take (from the OU win) is we can beat anyone in the country."

• Cody Hawkins on Baylor's defense: "Baylor's defense is pretty darn good. They throw a lot of things at you. They've been making a lot of plays. They play with a lot of heart. They fly around as much as anybody we've faced."

Dan Hawkins' colleague Dennis Franchione is in some hot water in College Station after it was revealed he had been selling "inside" information, including injury issues, to a select circle of boosters. Asked about it, Hawkins said he didn't know the details of the issue. Hawkins said, however, he would never sell information. He also said he assumes anything he says to anyone outside the program is public information, or will somehow become public information.