The Deion Sanders, Colorado Buffaloes hype train was derailed a few weeks ago. The Buffaloes are losers of six of their last seven games, the Buffs need to win the final two games of the regular season to become bowl-eligible in 2023.
With winning proving paramount in sustained success on the recruiting trail, where does the Colorado Football Recruiting class rank among its peers in Sanders’ first year?
Colorado Football Recruiting: Where Deion Sanders’ First Class Ranks
Recruiting is everything in college football. It’s a year-round battleground where the top coaches prove their worth across the nation. While new-age recruiting also includes the transfer portal, we’re looking just at a coach’s ability to bring in a talented high-school recruiting class here.
Coach Prime and the Buffaloes had a terrific turnaround from a roster that lacked any talent in 2022 via the transfer portal, but for sustained success, that will certainly need to be mirrored on the recruiting trail.
So, where does Sanders’ and his staff’s first recruiting class in the Pac-12 (soon to be Big 12) rank? We took to 247Sports and their Crystal Ball to see how firm their commitments are and where they rank.
- Four-star ATH Aaron Butler; Calabasas, CA
Prediction: Hard commit, 5/16/23 (low confidence)
- Four-star DL Brandon Davis-Swain; West Bloomfield, MI
Prediction: Hard commit, 6/10/23 (no projection)
- Three-star DL Omar White; Valdosta, GA
Prediction: Hard commit, 12/26/22 (no projection)
- Three-star DL Eric Brantley; Valdosta, GA
Prediction: Hard commit, 12/28/22 (no projection)
- Three-star OT Issiah Walker Jr. (JUCO); El Dorado, KS
Prediction: Hard commit, 10/30/23 (no projection)
- Three-star WR Zycarl Lewis; Venice, FL
Prediction: Hard commit, 6/11/23 (no projection)
- Three-star QB Danny O’Neil; Indianapolis, IN
Prediction: Hard commit, 3/21/23 (low confidence, Kentucky flip)
- THree-star EDGE Amontrae Bradford; Statesboro, GA
Prediction: Hard commit, 10/9/23 (medium confidence)
- Three-star iOL Talan Chandler; Nevada, MO
Prediction: Hard commit, 2/3/23 (low confidence, Missouri flip)
- Three-star RB Micah Welch; Milledgeville, GA
Prediction: Hard commit, 6/13/23 (medium confidence)
Using the Crystal Ball Predictions for each recruit, it looks as if the Buffaloes have a lot of work left to do in their 2024 class.
Prized recruit Aaron Butler, a four-star athlete who can play WR or CB, is considered a hard commit, but was originally projected as an Oregon commit. You better believe Oregon head coach Dan Lanning would personally love another victory over Colorado, only this time on the recruiting trail, and would appear to be still in the running for his services.
The recruiting class has the potential to lose a few more if the Crystal Ball predictions are to be believed as well.
Three-star quarterback Danny O’Neil was once a top target for the Kentucky Wildcats. Though his last prediction was back during the summer of 2022, it remains to be seen if Kentucky is still on the Cathedral QB or if the Buffs are solid with his commitment.
Elsewhere, three-star interior offensive lineman Talan Chandler has been projected to make a flip from the Buffs to Missouri. The recent success of the Tigers surely has something to do with that projection and Eli Drinkwitz is no stranger to pulling off great recruiting coups.
Colorado will have to continue to put their foot on the gas with this recruiting class as it stands right now. There are a handful of players hanging in the balance and the class itself only ranks 63rd nationally.
Coach Sanders’ first class ranks 12th in what would be the new-look 16-team Big 12. Only Utah and Cal trail the Buffs from the current Pac-12 members.