Deion Sanders Oct 28, 2023; Pasadena, California, USA; Colorado Buffaloes head coach Deion Sanders leaves the field after the game against the UCLA Bruins at Rose Bowl. UCLA defeated Colorado 28-16. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

To say that Deion Sanders and the Colorado Buffaloes are having a rough spring is an understatement. Sanders and his program have come under fire from their social media posts to the number of players who have left the program.

One ESPN analyst thinks he knows why Sanders is losing so many kids, he’s scaring them away with his tactics.

“It’s hard for Colorado to have a backup quarterback,” ESPN’s Pete Thamel said. “Mainly because Deion came in and insulted most of the ones who were in the room and scared them off. Who wants to go in and back up the coach’s son? You’re not going to play. You have essentially the worst O-line in major college football last year. Shedeur gets sacked, I believe, 52 times. I think Old Dominion actually did give up more sacks than Colorado but they were atrocious. He was running scared all year and eventually got hurt, which hurt them even more.”

It’s obviously important for the Buffs to have a good backup QB for insurance in Shedeur Sanders gets hurt. But Deion Sanders keeps running them off.

They do have Ryan Staub coming back and Destin Wade and Walter Taylor III, a pair of transfers out of the SEC from Kentucky and Vanderbilt respectively, and Colton Allen, a sophomore who is also returning.

So even if the backup quarterback situation is ok, that still doesn’t solve the numerous other problems on the team, including the team’s offensive line which nearly got Sanders killed last year. But the primary issue seems to be that Sanders has a problem keeping players on his roster. Even the players whom he recruited out of the transfer portal are now leaving.

Sanders has been accused by several players of showing favoritism towards his son and Travis Hunter which has caused tension within the program.

Gavin Kuld, who was a walk-on backup quarterback for Colorado last year, called out Deion and Shedeur Sanders during a podcast appearance.

Shedeur Sanders called out his former teammate saying he was “sparing him.” He also talked about how people will say almost anything to bring the program down.

At this point, they don’t have to do much. Most of the things that are happening to the Buffaloes this offseason are self-inflicted and it’s starting to be a distraction going into this season.

Expectations are that the Buffs are going to win more than four games this upcoming season. It’s a lofty goal for a team that has lost 42 players off of last year’s 4-8 team.

Will the off-season antics by Sanders and his sons be a problem? Shedeur Sanders was the darling of the college football media after his impressive year, which definitely helps matters. But now, the blinders have come off and the college football world will expect more.

They want to see how his team will respond to the criticism they received this offseason. But most importantly, how will Deion Sanders respond especially if things don’t go his team’s way?

So far, he and his sons have shown they don’t respond all that well to criticism. But if they think it’s bad now, imagine how it will be if they don’t live up to expectations.

{Pete Thamel}

About Stacey Mickles

Stacey is a 1995 graduate of the University of Alabama who has previously worked for other publications such as Sportskeeda and Saturday Down South.