Colorado football coach Mike MacIntyre said he plans to spend about 25 minutes of each spring practice working on special teams, and he finally has a special teams coach in place to lead that portion of practice.
MacIntyre hired Toby Neinas as special teams coach weeks ago but the school never issued a news release and still hadn't included Neinas on the list of coaches on its website as of Tuesday afternoon.
Neinas is the son of Chuck Neinas, the former interim commissioner of the Big 12 Conference who has operated his own consulting business for years, helping colleges identify candidates and hire football coaches and athletic directors. Neinas has consulted for CU several times when it has had openings.
Toby Neinas coached at Montana State last season and previously coached at New Mexico, San Diego State, Temple and Alabama-Birmingham.
MacIntyre said the Buffs probably won't spend 25 minutes every day working on punts, kickoffs and field goals, but on days they do less kicking they will still do drills that teach players techniques used on special teams.
"I think that is absolutely critical," MacIntyre said.
Weight room work will continue
MacIntyre said he decided to dedicate six weeks to conducting 15 spring practices, in part, because it will allow the Buffs to continue hard lifting in the weight room three days a week.
"We want these kids within an 18-month period to completely change their bodies," MacIntyre said.
MacIntyre noted that each individual has areas in which the strength program is designed to help them improve and reach the 18th-month goal. As far as team goals, MacIntyre said he hopes to improve the overall team speed at CU, especially on the defensive side of the ball. That will likely come through recruiting more than the strength program.
"That is why we signed fast, athletic linebackers," he added. "They might not be the biggest guys in the world but they are fast and athletic. We basically play eight spread football teams next year that are hurry up, fast paced teams."
CU listed only four players as out for spring practices because of injuries Monday. They are running back Terrence Crowder (knee), wide receiver Colin Johnson (knee), offensive lineman Alexander Leiws (shoulder) and defensive lineman Juda Parker (shoulder). MacIntyre expects to get an updated injury report from team athletic trainers Wednesday. ... Wide receiver Paul Richardson said he is expecting to participate fully in practices after sitting out last season while recovering from a torn knee ligament suffered last spring.