FORT COLLINS, Colo. (CBS4)– Steve Addazio is now in his new role as Colorado State University’s new football coach. He has never been to Fort Collins before, but once he stepped foot on campus, he was pleasantly surprised.
“I’m blown away by how beautiful this place is and the magnificent facilities that you have, along with the fabulous people that I am meeting each step along the way,” Addazio said.
Addazio was introduced as Colorado State’s 23rd head football coach Thursday afternoon in the Hall of Champions at Canvas Stadium. The former Boston College coach was 44-44, making six bowl games in his seven seasons on the job. He has a simple plan to build Colorado State’s football program back to their winning ways.
“Our program is going to be based off of love,” Addazio said. “Love is the fundamental building block of any family. Love builds trust. Trust gives you faith. Faith gives you hope. And hope allows you to persevere.”
The words rang loud and clear to Colorado State Athletic Director Joe Parker, who’s confident he found the right guy to lead the Rams.
“Steve has been the head coach at two different institutions for nine years, and he’s had success with programs that traditionally have not had success,” Parker said according to the team’s website. “In my opinion, it says something that he’s taken a team to bowl games in six out of seven years.”
Addazio will look to bring a defensive mindset to the team by first focusing on stopping the run. The Rams finished last season ninth in the Mountain West Conference in run defense, giving up 195.8 yards per game. Addazio will look to recruit high-character players who have a passion for the game of football.
“I obviously really believe in toughness and passion. I want our teams to have an obvious love for each other, a love for the game of football, play with an unbelievable passion and be a physically and mentally tough team … Relentless,” Addazio said in a statement. “When you play us, you’re going to be in one physical game.”
But the new head coach knows he’ll be judged by how his team fares in rivalry games. Colorado State has lost a combined 12-straight games to Colorado, Air Force and Wyoming. He plans on ending that streak immediately, starting against the Wyoming Cowboys or “That Team Up North.”
“I know the Border War. I had a chance to beat that team a couple of years back when I was at Temple (Temple beat Wyoming 37-15 in 2011 New Mexico Bowl). We’re going to work hard every day to prepare for those games. I know how important the Colorado game is and the Air Force game. I understand the importance level of those rivalries. And we’re going to get that boot and bring it back here and that’s going to be important,” Addazio said to a round of applause from the audience in attendance.
Colorado State opens the 2020 season at home against the Colorado Buffaloes on Sept. 5, 2020.