San Jose State quarterback David Fales has some music for Colorado quarterbacks' ears. They had better listen. He was the most accurate quarterback in major-college football last season, and he gives a lot of the credit to one man.
New Colorado coach Mike MacIntyre.
In Fales' one season at San Jose State, the junior merely led the nation in passing percentage at .725, and the Spartans to their best year in school history (11-2).
How much did MacIntyre help him?
"A lot," he said in a telephone interview. "When I first got here, he put that confidence in me and let me know that he's here for me and I'm an extension of him. And if there's ever a problem, come to him. He'd give me little details about what I'm doing.
"And he kept me focused. That's another thing I liked about Coach Mac. Every day you come in, you might be a little tired, but he's going to set a tone for that morning and keep you focused. He'd revitalize the team."
MacIntyre didn't do it alone. Also arriving at San Jose last year was offensive coordinator Brian Lindgren, who followed MacIntyre to Boulder. What they did with Fales goes down as one of the great one-year projects in college football this past season.
Merely all-league out of Palma High in Salinas, Calif., in 2008, Fales signed with Nevada but found himself buried on the depth chart behind a guy named Colin Kaepernick, now willing the 49ers toward the Super Bowl. Fales transferred to Monterey (Calif.) Peninsula College and, despite throwing for 4,635 yards over two years, the only scholarship offer he got, besides San Jose State, was Indiana State, an FCS school.
Last fall Fales finished third nationally in pass efficiency (170.8), behind only Alabama's AJ McCarron (175.3) and Georgia's Aaron Murray (174.8). Fales was 327-of-451 for a school-record 4,193 yards with 33 touchdowns and nine interceptions.
"I've always been good with my accuracy and completions," Fales said. "But coming here, I learned how to get more mentally prepared. I put in more time in the film room with Coach Lindgren. Coach Mac is the one who sets that tone, the time you put in the film room.
"The difference between this year and other years is I was so prepared in games. I knew what was going on before it happened."
He also credits MacIntyre's pistol offense, which will be the new attack in Boulder.
"One thing he does is (make) it real simple," Fales said. "He made it basic for the quarterback. Although there's a lot of stuff going into it, there's a base plan for everything, for every play you're doing. So when it's all chaotic out there, there's always a base plan."