Coach Prime reamed his defensive backs for their subpar play on the field this week, no surprise coming from arguably the greatest DB in NFL history. The intensity is at an all-time high as Week 1 approaches.
Colorado should have no shortage of talent in the defensive backfield, led by former five-star prospect Travis Hunter. Hunter, who Urban Meyer recently compared to Percy Harvin in the sense that he doesn’t need much time on the practice field, is one of a number of highly recruited players in the Buffs’ secondary.
Cormani McClain, who spurned Miami to play in Boulder, could hold down the spot opposite of Hunter, giving the Buffs the top-rated corners from each of the last two recruiting classes.
Add in a quartet of former SEC safeties in Shilo Sanders (South Carolina), Jahquez Robinson (Alabama), Myles Slusher (Arkansas), and Vito Tisdale (Kentucky), and Colorado should have plenty to work with this season.
While the talent is there, Coach Prime wasn’t necessarily impressed with the group’s play on the field this week. As the Buffs gear up for TCU, Sanders was seen ripping into those DBs at practice.
After watching his defensive backs get beat time and again, then resort to holding receivers, Sanders made the group run sprints. He’d seen enough.
“If you hold, get on the line,” Prime said, scolding his players for penalties. While maybe not fun for the guys in this particular video, it’s pretty cool to see Sanders teach a position group he’s clearly passionate about coaching.
He also tried to instill a sense of accountability with the secondary, making the entire unit run for the mistakes of a few. It’s something he’s preached throughout the offseason, even in preseason scuffles.
“If one fights, we all fight,” Coach Prime said after a recent dust-up between his offense and defense.
He continues to push the point across in hopes of molding the culture of his football program.
Deion Sanders preaches team vs. individual play in pre-practice speech.
While addressing the team in the Colorado football facility, Coach Prime emphasized the importance of team play.
“Individuals win awards, but teams win championships,” Sanders started. “My fondest memories I have in this game, in this thing we call athletics, is team. I’ve accomplished some wonderful things individually, but the greatest accomplishments I’ve ever shared have been with a team.”
He referenced a dependence on teammates as opposed to having the selfishness and entitlement of focusing on ‘Me.’
“This is a good team. I think this is a great team. But unless we function as a team, we’re not going to win.”
Colorado’s first chance to play as a unit in 2023 will come Week 1 against TCU. While not many outside of Boulder have big expectations for the Buffs, there are a few predicting an upset in that season opener.
Deion Sanders and the new-look Buffaloes will make their debut on Saturday, September 2nd. We’ll soon see if Coach Prime’s message is resonating with his team.