Colorado’s dismissal of head football coach Jon Embree after two seasons and a 4–21 record is turning into a messy divorce. One involving not only Embree but also another former Buffaloes coach.
On Tuesday, Bill McCartney — who coached Embree when the latter was a Colorado tight end and led the school to its lone national title in 1990 — said that race had a lot to do with Embree’s firing.
“I believe black men have less opportunity, shorter time if you will,” McCartney said in an afternoon with Denver’s ESPN Radio affiliate. “It’s just like, Dan Hawkins got five full years. Why not give Jon Embree five years? You signed him to a five-year contract.”
McCartney pointed out that, like Embree, he struggled early in his tenure in Boulder (he went 7–25–1 in his first three seasons). Yet Colorado still gave him a contract extension in 1984 following his third year.
Embree made reference to the same elephant in the room during a Sunday night interview with the Denver Post, saying “We [African American coaches] don’t get opportunities. At the end of the day, you get fired and that’s it, right, wrong or indifferent … We get bad jobs and no time to fix it.”
It appeared things couldn’t get any worse for CU football after going 1-11 this season but things are only getting rockier in Boulder.