7-6 overall, 5-4 conference, 1st Big 12 North
Against the spread
6-7 (4-2 home, 2-5 away, 4-5 grass)
7-6 (4-2 home, 3-4 away, 6-3 grass)
+.15 per game
2005 Season Summary
Head coach Gary Barnett initiated a slogan upon his hiring known as “RTD” which meant “return to dominance.” Barnett was an assistant at CU when Colorado won the 1990 national championship and after working miracles at Northwestern, “RTD” seemed to be a likely scenario.
Just barely good enough
As was the case at Northwestern, however, Barnett began to wear out his welcome as time went on at Colorado. He did produce a Big 12 championship in 2001 and had the Buffs in the Big 12 title game in two of the three seasons that followed but the reality of the situation was that the Buffs were just barely good enough and were not dominating anyone on a consistent basis.
The 2003 season was the breaking point for many CU backers and Barnett as the Buffs went 5-7 both straight up and against the spread. In the offseason that followed the program went through a media firestorm regarding scandals and accusations of the most ugly degree and Barnett ended up being suspended for several months, missing the spring training game. The Buffs somehow recovered from all of this to finish 8-5 straight up and 7-6 against the spread and with the Big 12 North Division title. Although they were blown out 3-42 by Oklahoma in the Big 12 title game they did win and cover their bowl against Texas El Paso.
Best of the worst
CU entered the 2005 season as the best of the worst, the chalk of the weak Big 12 North. Barnett had appeared to weather the storm and the Buffs were coming off a much quieter offseason as 2005 summer camp began.
Colorado opened the 2005 season at home against archrival Colorado State in the renewal of an intrastate rivalry that has caused riots amongst the fans of the two teams. The Buffs were 6-point chalks and escaped with a 31-28 win. In their next game against rebuilding New Mexico State, Colorado scored an easy 39-0 win as 23.5-point chalks for a promising start at 2-0 straight up.
Back into reality
In their next game at Miami, however, the Buffs were manhandled in a 3-23 loss as 14.5-point dogs to be slapped back into reality as a team that was just good enough to trick the public into thinking that they could really belong on the same field as a REAL power such as the Hurricanes.
Value reached its peak
The loss at Miami did serve the purpose of bringing down the prices on CU games. At Oklahoma State in their following game as small 3.5-point chalks the Buffs prevailed 34-0. This was followed by a home game against Texas A&M in which Colorado scored an impressive 41-20 win and cover as cheap 3-point chalks as their value reached its peak with the Buffs standing at 4-1 straight up and 3-2 against the spread.
In their next game at Texas, however, as 16-point dogs versus the Longhorns the Buffs were re-exposed as pretenders in a 17-42 loss. The following week at home against Kansas, Colorado rebounded with a nice 44-13 win as 16.5-point chalks. At Kansas State then following week against the desperate revenge minded Wildcats, Colorado accepted a gift wrapped 23-20 win as 7.5-point chalks. The high point of the season came the following week at home against Missouri as the Buffs took firm control of the Big 12 North with a 41-12 win as 13-point chalks to stand at 7-2 straight up and 5-4 against the spread.
From extension to extinguished
Barnett was riding high and CU announced that they were working on a new contract as the Buffs headed off to Iowa State as a 1.5-point favorite before being upset 16-30. Nebraska shocked CU 3-30 as whopping 17-point road dogs. Texas blew away CU 70-3 as 25.5-point chalks in the Big 12 title game as Barnett went from extension to extinguished, as he was fired after the game. CU lost but covered its bowl game vs. Clemson.