Skip to Content

Deion Sanders was the talk of Pac-12 spring


AP Sports Writer

Colorado fans have been infused with a dose of Prime Time.

The arrival of Deion Sanders as coach created quite a spectacle at the Buffaloes’ spring game, which drew more fans than the nine previous spring games combined.

Coach Prime doffed his hat to the crowd and took a bow before a 90-something long-time fan literally kicked things off with her right foot as numerous former Colorado players looked on.

“It’s unbelievable. Coach Prime has exceeded everybody’s expectations,” former CU receiver Jeremy Bloom said. “I think a lot of people knew, including me, that if we could get him here, the buzz would be back. I don’t think anybody imagined this — even in your wildest expectations.”

The expectations on the field might need to be tempered, at least at the start of Sanders’ tenure.

Sanders was hired to rebuild a program that went 1-11 last season and his arrival has led to a mass departure through the transfer portal — some right before the spring game.

“I didn’t kick them out. They walked out,” Sanders said. “Anytime someone quits a few days before the spring game, that should tell you a lot.”

The departures continued right after the spring game as several more players entered the portal, including Montana Lemonious-Craig, who had a 98-yard touchdown catch on Saturday.

The good news for Buffs fans: Sanders has been doing quite a bit of portaling himself.

Colorado’s transfer-portal class was rated No. 1 by the 247 Sports composite and includes Sanders’ son, Shedeur, who followed his father from Jackson State.

“We don’t look behind us, man,” Deion Sanders said. “We look ahead.”


Heisman Trophy winner Caleb Williams is returning to Southern California for what is expected to be his final collegiate season.

He’s not the only quarterback expected to have a huge impact during the 2023 season.

Utah’s Cam Rising, Oregon’s Bo Nix, Washington’s Michael Penix Jr., Washington State’s Cameron Ward and Arizona’s Jayden de Laura also will be back.

Oregon State added former Clemson quarterback D.J. Uiagalelei, who was sharp after struggling with accuracy early in the Beavers’ spring game. TCU transfer Sam Jackson V gave California fans a glimpse of what he can do with his arm and his legs in the Bears’ spring game.

Arizona State landed Notre Dame transfer Drew Pyne, who will compete with senior Trenton Bourguet — the backup turned starter last season — and highly touted recruit Jaden Rashada in coach Kenny Dillingham’s first season.

UCLA’s bid to replace Dorian Thompson-Robinson could come down to Kent State transfer Collin Schlee, returnee Ethan Garbers or Dante Moore, the first five-star recruit coach Chip Kelly has landed since coming to Westwood.


USC came within one game of reaching the College Football Playoff last season.

The Trojans’ defense was a big reason for it.

USC struggled defensively against the top teams on its schedule last year and coach Lincoln Riley hit the transfer portal to overhaul that side of the ball.

The Trojans added a huge piece with 300-pounder Bear Alexander’s decision to transfer from two-time national champion Georgia, joining Purdue transfer Jack Sullivan, Texas A&M transfer Anthony Lucas and Arizona transfer Kyon Barrs on the new defensive line line. USC also added Oklahoma State transfer Mason Cobb and Georgia State transfer Jamal Muhammad at linebacker.

“The difference in the front seven is noticeable,” Riley said. “I think we all knew deep down that we had some holes there last year.”


Arizona coach Jedd Fisch created quite a buzz in the desert, even if it didn’t translate on the field.

A year after going 1-11, the Wildcats took a big step last season, finishing 5-7.

The biggest task in continuing the momentum will be improving a defense that was among the worst in FBS.

Arizona lost some key players to the transfer portal, but added defensive linemen Bill Norton (Georgia) and Tyler Manoa (UCLA), along with former Cal edge rusher Orin Patu.

“Our defense is getting better,” Fisch said. “Our defense is flying around, our defense is making it harder on the offense.”


AP college football: and Sign up for the AP Top 25 newsletter here:

Article Topic Follows: AP - Oregon-Northwest

Jump to comments ↓

Associated Press


KTVZ NewsChannel 21 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content