Two-way star Travis Hunter focusing on one side of the ball for CU in spring

Mar 21, 2023, 6:41 AM

Travis Hunter...

Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Travis Hunter might be the best athlete the Colorado Buffaloes have had on campus since Byron “Whizzer” White… okay, that’s gone a bit too far.

But seriously, Hunter is as good as they come and the former top recruit in the country is expected to play both sides of the ball for Deion Sanders’ team. The 6-foot-1, 165-pound player could probably play defensive back in the NFL tomorrow but he’s a Sophomore and has only spent a season playing at the FCS level.

At Jackson State when Hunter was healthy he was great on defense and was so good Sanders had to push his budding star to be more like his famed coach. Sanders is the only athlete to play in a Super Bowl and World Series and Sanders did shine on both sides of the ball even in the NFL. Hunter is trying to copy his coach, even throwing down some dunks recently on campus, though he’s unlikely to seriously peruse a second sport, just a second position.

“Travis could fall out of bed and cover. Travis is a freak of an athlete,” Coach Prime said after the Buffs first spring ball practice. “If you watched practice today, I think he’d establish that real quick, who he is. He needs to learn everything about being a receiver because he is a natural DB and we play a lot of man, a lot of bump and run. So there ain’t too much you can teach. I could reach in my bag and give him some nuggets but he has to learn the signals, he has to understand the route movement, the arms, staying in tight to his body, his shoulders over his knees. He has to learn everything about being a receiver, the checks and everything. So he is focusing a lot on receiver right now and we’re happy with his progress. He was phenomenal today… phenomenal.”

Hunter is used to playing both ways, getting some action at wide out with the Tigers in 2022. He caught 18 passes for 190 yards. His quarterback at his old school was happy to see him on offense too.

“I’m feeling great that Travis is on my side,” now Colorado quarterback Shedeur Sanders said.

Highlights of the two were floating around the internet, as the Sanders-led Buffs would never miss an opportunity to get something on video.

Fans will get a look at Hunter next month at the CU Spring Game and for those who can’t go, it’ll be on ESPN.

Between Hunter and Cormani McClain, Colorado could finally break through to get a first-round pick in the NFL Draft very soon. Isaiah Oliver was the last notable defensive back to play for Colorado, going in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft. He finished a run of a few great DBs playing for the school including Tedric Thompson, Ahkello Witherspoon and Chidobe Awuzie, who were all selected later on in the 2017 NFL Draft. CU’s last first-rounder in the NFL Draft was also a DB, in 2011 when Jimmie Smith was selected by the Ravens and Nate Solder, a tackle, went a few picks ahead.



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Two-way star Travis Hunter focusing on one side of the ball for CU in spring