No team at any level of sports coming off a one-win season ever received as much attention or notoriety as the University of Colorado Buffaloes.
That, of course, was due to the hiring of Deion Sanders as the school’s new head football coach.
Sanders made constant headlines with actions and statements that some found entertaining and others offensive. He openly encouraged a host of former players to leave, turned the roster over with 87 newcomers, and bought with him from Jackson State Travis Hunter and his son, QB Shedur Sanders.
There were several pundits and some coaches who were openly critical of Sanders, including one who claimed that the Colorado roster was “the worse in the country.”
Colorado was a 21 point underdog against Texas Christian University Saturday. Texas Christian was a finalist last year in the national title game.
Fox Sports made it their national Game of the Week. Sanders’ son set a school record with 510 yards passing and four touchdowns. Dylan Edwards had three touchdown receptions and Hunter had both an interception and over 100 yards receiving playing two ways as Colorado scored a 45-42 upset. While it was only one win, it signaled that Sanders does seem to have things turned around in a positive fashion faster than expected. It was also an indication of the talent possessed by Hunter, Edwards, Sanders and some others among the 50 plus players Sanders got from the transfer portal.
After the game, various coaches were quoted saying such things as “shocked” and “really surprised” by how quickly Sanders has been able to get this group to jell as a unit on both sides of the ball.
ESPN analyst Trevor Mattick praised Shedur Sanders, saying he “wasn’t just a great thrower, he was a great quarterback.” Fox couldn’t be happier, as they had already planned to show Colorado’s home opener against Nebraska next Saturday.
After Colorado State, the schedule gets tougher with games against nationally ranked Oregon and national title contender USC.
If by the end of September Colorado is 3-2 or 4-1, the excitement will soar. More realistic is the possibility Colorado can go 6-6 and make a bowl game.
Considering how awful they were last season, that would be an enormous improvement.
But chances are good that won’t be what Deion Sanders tells his squad. He continues to strive for excellence, and at least in the early going, his methods are working.