Sep 16, 2023; Boulder, Colorado, USA; Colorado Buffaloes cornerback Travis Hunter (12) warms up prior to the game against the Colorado State Rams at Folsom Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado’s Travis Hunter expected out at least 2 more weeks

Dynamic two-way player Travis Hunter probably won’t play for Colorado until later this month as he continues to recover from a lacerated liver.

Hunter suffered the injury during the Buffaloes’ 43-35 double-overtime win over Colorado State on Sept. 16. The wide receiver/defensive back took a tough late hit at the sideline from Rams safety Henry Blackburn and hasn’t played since.

Coach Deion Sanders said Hunter wouldn’t play this Saturday at Arizona State. The Buffaloes (3-2, 0-2 Pacific 12) will host Stanford on Oct. 13, then have a week off before meeting UCLA on Oct. 28.

“Travis is … let’s say two or three (weeks away),” Sanders said Tuesday. “That would be my dream and desire, for him to stay out until after the bye week.”

Hunter is in his first season at Colorado, transferring from Jacksonville State when Sanders took over as head coach in Boulder. Sanders said Hunter is itching to play but is doing some coaching in practice until then.

“Travis is doing well,” Sanders said. “He was out in practice today coaching his butt off. He’s one of the best coaches we have. And he’s on — shoot, Cormani (McClain), he’s on his butt. He’s on his butt, day in and day out. I know Travis — he’s going to want to (play).”

In the first three games of the season, Hunter caught 16 passes for 213 yards. He also has nine tackles, an interception and two passes defensed.

–Field Level Media

Sep 16, 2023; Boulder, Colorado, USA; Colorado Buffaloes safety Shilo Sanders (21) looks on during the fourth quarter against the Colorado State Rams at Folsom Field. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado safety Shilo Sanders went to ER after Oregon game

Colorado safety Shilo Sanders, the son of coach Deion Sanders, had to be taken to the emergency room with an undisclosed injury after the Buffaloes’ 42-6 loss to Oregon on Saturday.

In a video released on YouTube by his brother Deion Sanders Jr., Shilo Sanders was seen coming off the team plane and saying that he was “peeing blood.”

Asked if he was all right, Shilo Sanders replied, “Nah, I made a tackle and I landed on my kidney or something bro, so I gotta go to the ER and get checked.”

On Tuesday, Deion Sanders told reporters his son was improving. Colorado is preparing for another Pac-12 game against a ranked opponent this Saturday, this time No. 8 Southern California in Boulder, Colo.

“We went to the hospital right after we landed,” Deion Sanders said. “He’s doing much better. We’re praying that he heals and he’s playing this weekend. He’s a valuable part of our secondary and our team defensively.”

In four games this season, Shilo Sanders has 26 tackles, one forced fumble and one interception he returned for a touchdown against Colorado State.

–Field Level Media

Sep 9, 2023; Boulder, Colorado, USA; Colorado Buffaloes cornerback Travis Hunter (12) following the game against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Folsom Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Deion Sanders says no Travis Hunter for Colorado vs. No. 8 USC

Colorado two-way star Travis Hunter will not play this Saturday’s home game against No. 8 Southern California as he recovers from a lacerated liver.

Colorado coach Deion Sanders — in a video posted online Monday on his son’s YouTube channel — told his players that Hunter texted him saying he needed to play this week after missing Colorado’s 42-6 loss to Oregon.

“We need to get everything we can so I can get back on the field. I’m not taking no for an answer,” Hunter purportedly told Sanders.

Sanders then told his team how he responded:

“No, you ain’t ready and I care about you more than I care about this game. You’re going to change the game of football one day when you get healthy and ready. Your future is brighter than mine ever will be and ever was. Relax and get healthy. I love you, son.”

Hunter was injured Sept. 16 when Colorado State’s Henry Blackburn laid an illegal hit on him along the sideline.

A former five-star high school recruit, Hunter plays wide receiver and cornerback for Sanders at Colorado after following the coach there from Jackson State. In the first three games of 2023, Hunter had 16 catches for 233 yards on offense and one interception, two pass breakups and nine tackles on defense.

After the Buffaloes’ lopsided loss at Oregon, unbeaten USC is a 21.5-point favorite against Colorado at BetMGM and FanDuel Sportsbook.

–Field Level Media

Sep 9, 2023; Boulder, Colorado, USA; Colorado Buffaloes head coach Deion Sanders on the sidelines in the third quarter against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Folsom Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado’s Deion Sanders gifts shades as jab at Colorado St. coach

Colorado head coach Deion Sanders took to national television Friday to show just how “personal” this weekend’s game against visiting Colorado State has become.

On Wednesday night, Rams head coach Jay Norvell took issue with the pomp and circumstance surrounding the game in Boulder, Colo., with much of the attention cast on Sanders and the 18th-ranked Buffaloes (2-0).

“We had to do a bunch of ESPN videos, and it was great, I loved it,” Norvell said on his coach’s show. “But our kids came out of all those videos really with a chip on their shoulder. They’re tired of all that stuff. They really are tired of it.

“I sat down with ESPN today. And I don’t care if they hear it in Boulder. I told them I took my hat off and my glasses off. And I told them, ‘When I talk to grown-ups, I take my hat and my glasses off.’ That’s what my mother taught me.”

Sanders responded with a spirited speech to his team in Thursday’s practice, with the term “personal” being repeated multiple times by both himself and the team.

Sanders continued on Friday by presenting Prime 21 sunglasses from Blenders to every player, and gifting the same to the hosts of ESPN’s “First Take” and “The Pat McAfee Show.” Sanders has been known throughout his decorated career for his “Prime Time” nickname.

“I don’t like that it happened because this is another (Black) coach,” Sanders told McAfee. “”We started out right? He was complimenting me, I was complimenting him, but it just took a quick left. What happened? Who got to him?

“After what he said previously, it threw me off and I started, I really started to contemplate, what happened? Why would you go into that direction? You know me, you know how I get down. If we really want to talk, I can do this. I’m pretty good at this, but I don’t need to, because the kids, they’re ready.”

Sanders’ youngest son and Colorado quarterback, Shedeur, and cornerback Travis Hunter also addressed the situation on “First Take.”

“All respect (is) gone,” said Shedeur Sanders, who leads the nation with 451.5 passing yards per game. He also has six touchdown passes and no interceptions.

“We know he’s got a lot of pressure, and we’re the players that have to go out there and handle the pressure for him,” Hunter said.

Colorado State (0-1), which plays out the Mountain West Conference, was thumped 50-24 by Washington State on Sept. 2.

The Rams have dropped 24 consecutive games against ranked opponents since beating then-No. 7 Colorado in 2002 during Sonny Lubick’s tenure as their coach.

Colorado State has lost the past five meetings — the most recent was in 2019 — in the Rocky Mountain Showdown.

–Field Level Media

Sep 9, 2023; Boulder, Colorado, USA;  Colorado Buffaloes head coach Deion Sanders before the game against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Folsom Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Prime Bets: Masses buy into Colorado football betting markets

Apparently the public agrees with Deion Sanders: Colorado-Colorado State is personal.

The public is making that much known with the amount of money pouring in on No. 18 Colorado to cover the 23.5-point spread in the Saturday primetime game with Colorado State.

At BetMGM, 93 percent of bets were on Colorado covering the number as of Friday morning.

The book had taken “2.5x more bets on Colorado to cover than any other college football team this weekend.”

Sanders is 2-0 in his first season as Buffaloes coach and in-state rival CSU visits Saturday after Rams coach Jay Norvell took a jab at Sanders wearing sunglasses and hats in his press conferences.

Sanders, in a video released by the team Thursday, clearly took the comment to heart, telling his team from the middle of a loud huddle: “This was just going to be a good game. They made it …”

Colorado players responded “Personal!”

At BetRivers, Colorado-CSU is also the most bet game by total handle, ahead of No. 7 Penn State at Illinois.

The coaching subplot sprawled into betting markets.

Sportsbetting.ag has odds for the coaches not shaking hands postgame set at +150 (-200 the customary palm slap takes place).

The offshore book also set odds at +2000 that Sanders wears a cowboy hat and gun holster and +600 that the coaches shove each other.

–Field Level Media

Sep 2, 2023; Fort Worth, Texas, USA; Colorado Buffaloes wide receiver Travis Hunter (12) runs after catching a ball in the first half against the TCU Horned Frogs at Amon G. Carter Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado cracks AP poll at No. 22, Georgia still No. 1

Deion Sanders’ first season at Colorado was forecast to be one very long campaign with very few wins.

But after just one game in his tenure, “Coach Prime” is the leader of a nationally ranked program.

Colorado sits at No. 22 in the Associated Press Top 25 poll, released Tuesday, after its opening 45-42 victory over then-No. 17 TCU, which lost in last season’s championship game.

The unexpected and scintillating victory turned quarterback Shedeur Sanders (son of Deion) and two-way player Travis Hunter into household names. Both players were standouts last year in virtual anonymity at Jackson State under Deion Sanders before the latter took the Colorado job.

The Buffaloes also have just 10 scholarship players back from last season’s 1-11 campaign.

Colorado hosts Nebraska this Saturday. A Buffaloes’ victory would double last season’s win total.

Georgia remained the nation’s No. 1 team and received 58 of the 63 first-place votes. Michigan is still second and received two first-place votes.

Alabama moved up one spot to No. 3, while Florida State jumped four spots to No. 4 after routing LSU 45-24, dropping the Tigers nine spots to No. 14. The Seminoles received the other three first-place votes.

Ohio State defeated Indiana 23-3 but dropped two spots to No. 5.

Southern California, Penn State, Washington, Tennessee and Notre Dame round out the Top 10.

Texas is 11th entering Saturday’s marquee game against Alabama. The Crimson Tide squeezed out a 20-19 win when the teams met last season.

Three Pac-12 programs are part of the next five spots — Utah is 12th, Oregon is 13th and Oregon State is No. 16.

Kansas State is No. 15.

North Carolina is 17th. Rounding out the Top 20 are Oklahoma, Wisconsin and Ole Miss.

Duke cracked the polls at No. 21 after an impressive 28-7 victory over Clemson. The Tigers fell from No. 9 to No. 25.

Texas A&M is No. 23 and Tulane is 24th.

TCU and Iowa fell out of the rankings.

–Field Level Media

Apr 22, 2023; Boulder, CO, USA; Colorado Buffaloes head coach Deion Sanders hits the field before the start of the spring game at Folsom Filed. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Amazon film series to document Deion Sanders’ first season at Colorado

The University of Colorado and Deion Sanders’ business manager have agreed on a contract for a documentary series about the football team’s first-year head coach to be shown on Amazon Prime, USA Today reported.

Colorado will not be compensated by SMAC Productions, which is co-founded along with SMAC Entertainment by Sanders’ business manager, Constance Schwartz-Morini. Instead, the university feels it will benefit from publicity and other advantages for the Boulder campus.

“The exposure of hiring Coach Prime (Sanders) has already paid dividends in the form of record-breaking ticket and merchandise sales, and we are confident the documentary will only increase these ‘Prime Effect’ impacts throughout the university,” Colorado spokesman Steve Hurlbert told USA Today.

Hurlbert confirmed that Colorado did not ask for financial compensation, unlike similar arrangements for other college programs such as Michigan football, which was paid $2.25 million for access and licensing for a 2017 show on Amazon, according to the report. Kentucky men’s basketball coach John Calipari received $1 million from the producers of a docuseries about the program, and he said he donated it to charity.

The contract, according to the report, gives SMAC Productions wide access and calls for weekly meetings with the Colorado athletic director or his representatives with consultation about the content of each episode. The producers also have some dramatic license with the storytelling “to enhance the dramatic value of the Series,” according to the contract, without misrepresenting or defaming Colorado or its individuals.

Hurlbert said there has been a “positive, collaborative working partnership between SMAC and CU Boulder on this project.”

The Buffaloes’ first game is Sept. 2 at TCU. The contract calls for access to filming through the 2023 season and program activities up to and including the team banquet.

Additional seasons of the series would be negotiated with Colorado.

SMAC produced a four-part series on Sanders’ final season as the head coach of Jackson State in 2022, which streamed on Amazon.

The Buffaloes went 1-11 last season before hiring Sanders. Now, not only has the program garnered more attention, but season tickets have sold out for the first time since 1996, USA Today reported. The spring football game sold out for the first time, period.

“This documentary gives an unprecedented look at one of the highest-profile college coaching jobs in America,” a spokesperson for SMAC Entertainment said in a statement to USA Today Sports. “The access and participation from the school and the students will showcase real-time moments of turning a football program around while bringing global exposure to the University of Colorado.”

SMAC Entertainment manages Sanders and his two sons on the team, Shedeur and Shilo, as well as cornerback/receiver Travis Hunter. Sam Morini, Schwartz-Marini’s nephew, is a SMAC employee and Deion Sanders’ day-to-day manager.

–Field Level Media

Apr 22, 2023; Boulder, CO, USA; Colorado Buffaloes head coach Deion Sanders during the first half of the spring game at Folsom Filed. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Deion Sanders to have surgery, miss Pac-12 media day

Colorado head coach Deion Sanders is scheduled to undergo another surgery and will miss Pac-12 media day on Friday in Las Vegas.

Sanders is scheduled to undergo the surgery Thursday.

In a post on Instagram, Sanders said he will be ready to go when camp opens later this summer and for the season opener on Sept. 2 at TCU in his first season as Colorado’s coach.

Sanders has faced health issues over the past couple of years.

In June, he said he had multiple blood clots surgically removed, including a “really bad” one that surgeons removed from his left thigh.

This time, he said in a video posted to Instagram, the surgeons will operate on two toes in his left foot to relieve pain and also remove blood clots from his right leg.

“I apologize that I’m not gonna be at the Pac-12 media day due to I have to have another surgery tomorrow — a couple of surgeries — one in my leg, as well as to remove other clots,” Sanders said.

“I promise you when we go to TCU, I’m running out in front of our team. I promise you that.”

Sanders, who turns 56 next month, said in June that he would need the surgery on his right leg.

He underwent multiple surgeries in 2021 and missed three games during his time as the head coach at Jackson State. He returned to the sidelines coaching from a wheelchair and later with the use of a custom scooter.

Defensive coordinator Charles Kelly will fill in for Sanders at media day.

The Buffaloes finished 1-11 last season under Karl Dorrell and interim coach Mike Sanford.

–Field Level Media

Dec 29, 2019; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA;  New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur before the game against the Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Report: Pat Shurmur joining Deion Sanders’ Colorado staff

Former NFL head coach Pat Shurmur is joining Deion Sanders’ staff at Colorado, 247 Sports reported.

Shurmur, 58, has spent the past week on campus and will join the Buffaloes as an analyst, per the report.

He would bring more than two decades of NFL coaching experience to Boulder, including a 19-46 record as head coach of the New York Giants (2018-19) and Cleveland Browns (2011-12). He was also the interim head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles for one game in 2015.

Shurmur most recently served as the offensive coordinator of the Denver Broncos from 2020-21. That’s the same role he held with the Minnesota Vikings (2016-17), Eagles (2013-15) and St. Louis Rams (2009-10) among several other positions dating back to 1999.

His last job in college football was as Stanford’s offensive line coach in 1998.

Colorado kicks off its first season with Sanders as the head coach on Sept. 2 at TCU.

–Field Level Media

Apr 22, 2023; Boulder, CO, USA; Colorado Buffaloes head coach Deion Sanders during the first half of the spring game at Folsom Filed. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Deion Sanders: ‘Really bad’ clot removed from leg

Deion Sanders said Saturday that he had multiple blood clots removed during surgery the day before, including a “really bad” one that surgeons removed from his left thigh.

Sanders, 55, also said he expects to be out of the hospital Sunday. The Colorado head coach gave the updates in a series of social media posts on different platforms.

“I had a big blood clot in my thigh that they got out, and I had some below my knee that they got out,” Sanders said in an Instagram post Saturday. “Then I’ve got one in the right leg that they’re going to get soon.”

It’s unclear exactly how many clots were removed, but Sanders said the one taken from his left thigh was the most significant.

“That was the one that was doing the most damage,” he said in a video that was posted by his son Deion Jr. to YouTube.

Sanders had the surgery Friday.

Sanders underwent multiple surgeries in 2021 and missed three games during his time as the head coach at Jackson State. He returned to the sidelines coaching from a wheelchair and later with the use of a custom scooter.

–Field Level Media