East Spotlight Newspaper
Prime Time in Boulder
The Deion ‘Primetime’ Sanders era at CU Boulder is officially underway and expectations for the Buffaloes are at an all-time high. In just his first 5 days as the head coach of CU, Sanders made a plethora of moves. He hired Kent State head coach Sean Lewis to be his offensive coordinator and Charles Kelly as defensive coordinator. Kelly worked as the safety coach at Alabama and is known for being an elite recruiter. Although most are excited to see the success that Coach Prime can bring to CU, his decision to move on from his former head-coaching job at Jackson State has been heavily criticized. Journalist Bomani Jones was one of several people who spoke out against Sanders’ move. Jones, in an appearance on CNN, stated that Sanders “Sold a dream and then walked out on that dream.” Sanders, who helped lead Jackson State to its first winning season since 2013, doesn’t seem too upset by the criticism. He claimed that those who condemned his decision “Say things out of emotions and anger.” He hasn’t expressed any regret in his decision and seems excited for the next chapter of his coaching career.
Despite leaving Jackson State in his past, Deion was followed to Colorado by six of his former players. Jackson State stars Travis Hunter and Shadeur Sanders, Deion’s son, are both following him to CU and headlined the Buffaloes’ 2022 transfer class. Hunter, who was the #1 ranked player in this year’s transfer portal, became the first five-star recruit to play with CU since 2008. As of now, 31 transfers have already committed to Colorado, with more likely to follow. Colorado’s class of transfers ranks #4 in the country, a massive improvement from last year’s class of transfers, which ranked just 78th in the country (247sports.com). Colorado isn’t only making noise in the transfer portal, however. The Buffs recently landed five-star recruit Cormani McClain, the number one cornerback of the 2023 recruiting class, as well as the twelfth-ranked overall prospect. McClain highlights Colorado’s 2023 recruits thus far, being one of 19 incoming freshmen to commit to playing for CU next year. The Buffs recruiting class this year ranks 29th nationally, a major leap from the 47th-ranked recruiting class they possessed last year. A year ago, prior to the Deion Sanders era, Colorado’s transfer class ranked just 79th nationally, eventually leading them to just a 1-11 overall record. It’s clear that players want to play for Coach Prime without even needing to be heavily recruited, and CU’s roster should continue to steadily improve as long as he’s in charge.