Colorado Notebook: Cabral feeling out the waters

By Kyle Ringo
Buffalo Sports News

Interim head coach Brian Cabral is feeling his way through taking over leadership of a BCS program in the middle of the season. It’s quite an adjustment for a man who has spent 21 years in Boulder as an assistant coach whose primary responsibilities have been coaching linebackers and some special teams units.

Cabral joked that he is paying attention to what the offense is doing and how it goes about its business for the first time this week.

The 54-year-old will be thrust into a decision making role for the whole time for the first time in his career on Saturday when Iowa State visits Folsom Field. Cabral will have to make calls generally reserved for the head coach, such as when to go for it on fourth downs, when to attempt a long field goal or punt, when to ask for a review and interacting with officials in general.

Cabral said he plans to lean heavily on the rest of the coaching staff, especially offensive coordinator Eric Kiesau and defensive coordinator Ron Collins.

“I’ve got to trust our staff for their knowledge,” he said. “I’ve got to trust my guys.”

Cabral previously served as interim head coach at CU in the spring of 2004 when former coach Gary Barnett was suspended, but this is a much different situation because the pressure will be on Cabral to make decisions on game day instead of spring practices.

The final three games of the season also will serve as Cabral’s audition for the job. He said on Tuesday that he hopes the school will consider hiring him to replace former coach Dan Hawkins.