Group ranks among school's all-time bests
Rams will face Idaho in 5 p.m. kickoff broadcast on ESPN
CSU scores 5 1st-half touchdowns, never trail in dominating victory
Rams begin 2nd fall training camp under Bobo
Higgins selected by Cleveland (5th round), James taken by Oakland (6th)
Spring Football Scrimmage #2 - 4/8/16 [Photos by Don Reichert]
Spring Football Scrimmage #1 - 4/1/17 [Photos by Don Reichert]
Colorado State spring football practice - 3/21/17 [Photos by Don Reichert]
CSU Football vs. Idaho (Famous Idaho Potato Bowl) - 12/22/16 [Photos by Don Reichert]
Potato Bowl - Day 4 - 12/21/16
Mike Bobo is in his third season as head coach at Colorado State in 2017, having been appointed by CSU President Dr. Tony Frank on Dec. 23, 2014, as the 22nd head coach in program history. Bobo came to Fort Collins from the University of Georgia, where the former Bulldogs quarterback had spent the previous 14 seasons, including the last eight as offensive coordinator.
Bobo in 2016 became the first head coach in CSU history to lead the Rams to a bowl game in each of his first two seasons. In both years his Rams teams have steadily improved and finished strong, as evidenced by his 7-1 record in November games, which includes a 4-1 mark on the road. The 2016 Rams closed the regular season winning four of their last five games, and five of their last seven, to finish the regular season at 7-5 for the second year in a row.
The Rams' offense fueled the late-season surge, averaging 47.8 points and 533.8 yards per game over the last six contests, including the bowl game. Those figures ranked second and fourth, respectively, among all FBS programs from Oct. 16 through the remainder of the season. CSU ranked fourth in the nation in red-zone scoring (94.6%), 28th in scoring offense (35.3) and 30th in total offense (462.5).
Five CSU players earned All-Mountain West recognition under Bobo's guidance, including three first-team selections: Wide receiver Michael Gallup, punter Hayden Hunt and guard Fred Zerblis. Second-team honors went to center Jake Bennett and linebacker Kevin Davis, while tackle Nick Callender, quarterback Nick Stevens and guard Paul Thurston received honorable mention.
In 2015 Bobo became the only head coach in program history to win seven regular season games in his first season at the helm. Bobo’s Rams won four games in a row, and five out of six, to close the 2015 regular season, securing CSU’s third consecutive bowl invitation en route to a 7-6 record. CSU’s four wins in the season’s final month marked the first undefeated November by a Rams team since 1948, and included three road wins--at Wyoming in his first “Border War,” at New Mexico and at Fresno State.
Five Rams earned All-Mountain West honors under Bobo in 2015, including punter Hayden Hunt, who was one of three finalists for the Ray Guy Award. CSU ranked fourth in the FBS in net punting average (42.0) and 17th in kickoff return average (25.1). Bobo’s Rams were one of only two FBS schools to have three running backs each record at least one game with 140 or more rushing yards (Dalyn Dawkins, Izzy Matthews and Jasen Oden, Jr.) and quarterback Nick Stevens set passing records for a CSU sophomore with 2,679 yards through the air and 21 touchdowns (fifth-most in school history).
Bobo’s 14-year stint at Georgia, where he had starred at quarterback in the late 1990s, began in January, 2001, when head coach Mark Richt hired him as quarterbacks coach, for his second stint with the school. He was promoted by Richt to offensive coordinator in 2007. During his time at UGA, Bobo helped lead the Bulldogs to 135 victories, including two Southeastern Conference championships, five SEC Eastern Division titles and eight bowl victories. The 2012 Broyles Award finalist held the offensive coordinator spot for 92 games with the Bulldogs, scoring 30-plus points 57 times, 40-plus points 29 times and more than 50 points 13 times.
In 2014 Bobo led a Bulldogs offense that averaged 41.3 points per game, which ranked eighth nationally, and racked up 457.8 yards of total offense per game. Against teams ranked in the Top 25, UGA compiled a 3-2 record while scoring 34.4 points per game. Additionally, the 2014 Bulldogs’ offense ranked in the top 15 nationally in rushing offense (257.0; 11th FBS), team passing efficiency (156.06; 9th FBS), completion percentage (67.4%; 7th FBS), fewest interceptions (6; 9th FBS), third-down conversion percentage (49.7%; 8th FBS) and fourth-down conversion percentage (80.0%; 3rd FBS). The 537 points scored in 2014 established a Georgia single-season record. The previous single-season record was set in 2012 while Bobo was offensive coordinator.
Bobo guided several talented quarterbacks at Georgia, including Aaron Murray, who played from 2010-13. Murray, who was chosen in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft by the Kansas City Chiefs, set more than 25 UGA records and four SEC marks. He became the first player in SEC history to have at least 3,000 passing yards in four consecutive seasons. The NFL’s No. 1 draft choice in 2009, Matthew Stafford, also blossomed under Bobo’s tutelage. The Detroit Lions’ starting quarterback was second-team All-SEC and earned All-America recognition in 2008 for Georgia and was MVP of the 2009 Capital One Bowl.
In Bobo’s time at Georgia he also mentored quarterback David Greene (2001-04), who was the winningest quarterback in NCAA Division I history at the time (42), wide receiver A.J. Green, running back Todd Gurley and many others. In all, Bobo helped mold four first-round NFL draft choices at Georgia: Stafford (No. 1 in 2009), running back Knowshon Moreno (No. 12 in 2009), Green (No. 4 in 2011) and Gurley (No. 10 in 2015).
Prior to joining Richt’s staff in Georgia, Bobo served one year as an assistant coach at Jacksonville State, after working as an administrative assistant and graduate assistant from 1998-99 at UGA.
Bobo was a quarterback for the Bulldogs from 1994-97, earning four letters, and led the team in passing in 1996 and ‘97. Among all UGA quarterbacks, Bobo ranks first in single-season completion percentage (65% in ‘97), single-season passing efficiency rating (155.8 in ‘97), second in career touchdown passes (38) and third in career pass completions (445), season passing yards (2,751 in ‘97), career passing yards (6,334) and single-season touchdown passes (19). In his career Bobo threw for 6,334 yards, which is third-most all-time by a Georgia quarterback.
Bobo, a native of Thomasville, Ga., was inducted into the Thomasville-Thomas County Sports Hall of Fame on Nov. 10, 2016. He joined his father, George, a long-time successful high school coach in Georgia, who was inducted in 2013.
Bobo and his wife, Lainie, have five children, a son Drew (13); triplets Olivia, Jake and Ava Grace (11); and Kate (9).
PROMINENT PLAYERS COACHED AT GEORGIA
- QB Aaron Murray – holds SEC record for passing touchdowns and passing yards
- QB Matthew Stafford – Drafted No. 1 overall by the Detroit Lions in 2009 NFL Draft
- WR A.J. Green – No. 4 overall pick to the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2011 NFL Draft
- RB Todd Gurley – Freshman All-American (2012), second-team All-SEC (2012), No. 10 overall choice in 2015 NFL Draft, 2015 AP NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year
- RB Knowshon Moreno – No. 12 overall pick by the Denver Broncos in the 2009 NFL Draft
Mark Richt, Head Coach at the University of Miami, and previously at Georgia: "Mike Bobo has been a leader his entire life playing the position of quarterback in high school and college. And he has led well. While he’s on the cutting edge of offensive football, he’s also old school in his approach. He’s a tough disciplinarian who is results-oriented. I never had to worry about our offense with Mike’s leadership as our coordinator.”
Matthew Stafford, starting quarterback for the Detroit Lions: “I am extremely happy for Coach Bobo, and I know he has been ready for an opportunity like this for quite some time. He helped me grow as a quarterback immensely in just a short amount of time at UGA and taught me what I needed to know for football at the highest level. I owe a lot of my success to the coaching and knowledge that he passed on to me. He was a great motivator and truly cared about his players. Because of that, I know he will be a successful head coach and bring a lot of success to the Colorado State team and fans.”
Peyton Manning, Two-time world champion quarterback: “He was the starting quarterback at Georgia during the whole time I was in school at Tennesee, or the three years--sophomore, junior and senior years. They had great teams; they had Champ (Bailey), Hines Ward and Robert Edwards. So, they had a lot of great players and Mike was a great leader, great SEC quarterback. We had some good battles. I always think you have a little bond with SEC guys, especially SEC quarterbacks. I enjoyed competing against him. He was a great player.”
Todd Gurley, running back for the St. Louis Rams, 2015 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year: “He’s very passionate about his job. He takes it seriously. With his offensive skills, he can definitely help them improve and move the ball. He’s a high-energy guy. He’s going to get on you, but it’s going to make you better. His offense really helps young guys and gets you ready for an NFL career if you get that opportunity. He’s going to be balanced and utilize his talents.”
A.J. Green, wide receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals: “The first thing that comes to mind about Mike Bobo is that he’s a really smart guy. Kind of a unique guy, just with his schemes and his play-calling. He always had something that was going to surprise the defense and mess them up.”
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