Kubiak likely to be Colorado's new coach; Announcement might come tomorrow, reports say; Playoff notebook


Interviewed twice in the past 12 months for coaching openings in the NFL, Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak could be introduced as Colorado University's coach as early as tomorrow, the Denver Post and Rocky Mountain News reported yesterday.

He would replace Rick Neuheisel, who was hired a week ago by the University of Washington.

Kubiak was a candidate for the Dallas Cowboys' vacancy last February, and earlier this month interviewed with Cleveland Browns president Carmen Policy about the coaching job with that expansion team. He also was on the Ravens' list of candidates.

Kubiak's starting date in Boulder will be delayed if the Broncos advance to the Super Bowl with a win over the New York Jets in the AFC championship today.

No-name Falcons

Until this season, the Falcons had a tough time getting attention in their hometown.

"We were playing between the seventh-inning stretch of Braves games," running back Jamal Anderson said. "At the same time, we knew Georgia is a tremendous football state and if we put a good product on the field, people would come. The fans have been coming and it's tremendous to see."

If they got little recognition in Atlanta, many players got even less recognition before joining the Falcons.

Their roster is studded with players who were ignored or repeatedly skipped in the draft:

Anderson wasn't chosen until the 201st pick, five-time Pro Bowl linebacker Jessie Tuggle was signed as a free agent, tackle Ephraim Salaam was chosen 199th in last year's draft, center Robbie Tobeck was signed as a free agent and quarterback Chris Chandler was released by five other teams.

Coach: Elway likely retiring

Even Broncos coach Mike Shanahan expects quarterback John Elway to retire after this season.

"Chances are that this will be John's last game at Mile High," Shanahan said. "But John has never wanted the focus on John Elway. It's on the team. That's one of the reasons why, in my opinion, he's the greatest to ever play the game."

Wishing not to distract from the title game, Elway has been coy about his plans. At a Friday news conference, he said, "I haven't thought past Sunday. I'm thinking about a championship football game. That's my total focus: to win there. I haven't given any thought to what I'm going to do in the future."

Still, Elway admitted later in the same press session that he had "about six things" he would consider once he's finished playing football.

The Georgia angle

Call it a harbinger of things to come, but the Jets have yielded 100 rushing yards to only two running backs this season -- San Francisco's Garrison Hearst (187) and New England's Robert Edwards (104). They both played at Georgia, which is where Denver's Terrell Davis played.


Because Pro Bowl cornerback Aaron Glenn aggravated an ankle sprain in practice last week, he'll be replaced in the starting lineup by Marcus Coleman, a three-year veteran from Texas Tech. Since quarterback Vinny Testaverde took over for Glenn Foley in Week 7, the Jets have trailed at halftime only twice -- by four points at New England and eight points against Seattle. They won both games. The Jets haven't beaten the Broncos in Denver since 1978, but they've only played three times in that span. Elway is 102-25 at Mile High Stadium and 58-64-1 on the road in 16 seasons.

The Los Angeles Times contributed to this article.

Pub Date: 1/17/99

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