Colorado freshman football coach Deion Sanders has just begun a roster review for the Buffaloes.
Since national signing day on Wednesday, Sanders and the Buffs have added 31 players, including 15 transfers. In the coming months, the Buffs will surely add more as they reshuffle the roster, and that means more players from the 2022 roster are likely to move on.
While a lot of changes are sure to come, here’s a look at how the roster is shaping up for now. This list only includes scholarship players. As of now, CU has 86 players scheduled to receive scholarships, as far as is publicly known.
Returning: JT Shrout, Sr.; Drew Carter, So.
Newcomers: Shedeur Sanders, Jr.; Ryan Staub, ma’am; Kasen Weisman, Mrs.
Note: Sanders, a two-year starter at Jackson State and son of the head coach, will surely take over as the starter. Shrout started seven games this season for the Buffs and could be a key backup if he stays.
Returning: Deion Smith, Sr.; Jayle Stacks, Jr.; Anthony Hankerson, So.; Victor Venn, Fr.
Newcomers: Dylan Edwards, p.
Note: For now, Smith and Hankerson are the top two in terms of experience. Both had good times this season, as did Stacks when he was called up. However, Edwards is a four-star recruit and has the ability to compete for the top job.
Wide receivers (13)
Returning: Maurice Bell, Sr.; Montana Lemonious-Craig, Jr.; Ty Robinson Jr.; Jordyn Tyson, So.; Grant Page, Parent; Chase Sowell, Sr.
Newcomers: Jimmy Horn Jr., Jr.; Isaiah Hardge, Sr.; Adam Hopkins, Sr.; Omarion Miller, Sr.; Jordan Onovughe, Parent; Jacob Page, Father; Asad Waseem, Fr.
Note: Tyson was dynamic this season, but faces a lengthy offseason in injury rehab. Lemonious-Craig also had a productive season. Bell would need a medical hardship waiver to return. Coach Sanders has made this a high priority, and Horn was a great addition. He might be the best receiver. Transfer cornerback Travis Hunter is also expected to play receiver.
tight ends (6)
Returning: Caleb Fauria, So.; Erik Olsen, So.; Louis Passarello, So.; Austin Smith, So.; Zach Courtney, p.
Newcomers: Seydou Traore Jr.
Note: With Brady Russell graduating, there isn’t a lot of experience to go back to. Traore could slide in as the main target. This year he was a first-team All-Sun Belt at Arkansas State. Fauria and Olsen showed great potential this season.
Offensive linemen (14)
Returning: Gerard Christian-Lichtenham, Jr.; Alex Harkey, Jr.; Jake Wiley Jr.; Jackson Anderson, So.; Lucas Eckardt, So.; Van Wells, So.; Carter Edwards, Ms.; Travis Grey, Mrs.
Newcomers: Landon Baby, Sr.; Isaiah Jatta, Jr.; Tyler Brown, So.; Savion Washington, So.; Jack Wilty, So.; Hank Zalinskas, Fr.
Note: Three starters – Christian-Lichtenhan, Wiley and Wells – are scheduled to return, but Sanders is loaded with transfers. Jatta was a JUCO All-American, Brown was an FCS All-American, Bebee and Wilty earned all-conference honors, and Washington was a full-time starter at Kent State. There will be a lot of competition in the trenches.
Defensive linemen (9)
Returning: Jalen Sami, father; Na’im Rodman, Sr.; Allan Baugh, So.; Tyas Martin, So.; Ryan Williams, So.; Aaron Austin So.
Newcomers: Taijh Alston, Sr.; Shane Coca-Cola, Jr.; Marshall Kneeland, Jr.
Note: Sami and Rodman were full-time starters this season, but they will battle for starting jobs if they stay with the Buffs. Alston (West Virginia), Cokes (Dartmouth) and Kneeland (West Michigan) were brought in as experienced starters to bolster the Buffs’ defensive line.
Edge Runners (6)
Returning: Joshka Gustav, Jr.; Devin Grant, So.; Zion Magale, So.; Shakaun Bowser, Sr.; Kaden Ludwick, the Fr.
Newcomers: Tag McCoy, p.
Note: The least experienced group on the team as it stands now. Grant and Gustav have played a combined 35 games, but not as full-time starters. Both have been role players, with Gustav missing the entire 2022 season through injury. McCoy is the only addition so far, but there could be more on the way.
Inside linebackers (9)
Returning: Marvin Ham II, Jr.; Isaac Hurtado, son; Sir Williams, So.; Eoghan Kerry, So.; Aubrey Smith, so…
Newcomers: LaVonta Bentley, Jr.; Victory Johnson, Sr.; Morgan Pearson, Sr.; Kofi-Taylor-Barrocks, Fr.
Note: The Buffs lost their top three linebackers to graduation. Bentley, a transfer from Clemson, could start on Day 1. Other than that, he has a lot of potential. Ham, Hurtado and Williams have played well at times in limited roles. Kerry and Smith have many advantages, along with the new freshmen.
Returning: Nigel Bethel Jr., Sr.; Toren Pittman, Jr.; Nikko Reed Jr.; Jason Oliver, So.; Keyshon Mills, Fr.; Joshua Wiggins, p.
Newcomers: Travis Hunter, So.; Carter Stoutmire, the Fr.
Note: Hunter, a transfer from Jackson State, is an instant starter. He was the best signing in the country a year ago and the best transfer this year. Reed was a full-time starter this year and played well. He would currently be listed as a starter.
Returning: Jeremy Mack Jr., Jr.; Tyrin Taylor, Jr.; Trevor Woods, Jr.; Simeon Harris, So.; Dylan Dixson, Parent; Oakie Salave’a, Fr.; Xavier Smith, Sr.
Newcomers: Cam’Ron Silmon-Craig, Jr.; Jaden Milliner-Jones, P.
Note: Buffs are programmed to return a lot of experience. Taylor and Woods were full-time starters this year, while Mack and Harris played a lot of snaps. However, Silmon-Craig is likely to fill a starting position. He played two seasons at Jackson State for Sanders.
Returning: Cole Becker Jr.
Newcomers: Mark Vasset Jr.
Note: The Buffs seem to be in great shape with the kicking game. Becker is one of the best kickers in the Pac-12 and was exceptional this season for the Buffs. Vassett committed to CU on Monday. He has been one of the best punters in the ACC and leaves Louisville as the program’s all-time leader in single-season and career punting averages.