After a busy week of Colorado Buffaloes departing through the transfer portal, Karl Dorrell’s staff has brought in a big-time talent. Former Oklahoma safety/linebacker Robert Barnes announced that he is joining the Buffs as a graduate transfer.
Barnes will be eligible immediately and will have two seasons to play. He figures to start from the get-go, as he is a natural to play either strong safety or the star position, depending on what the defense looks like without Tyson Summers as defensive coordinator.
Originally a 5-star recruit, per 247Sports.com, Barnes committed to Oklahoma in 2017. He spent much of his time in Norman switching between positions, as he started at safety, moved to nickelback, then linebacker, then back to safety. His playing time was uncertain, particularly heading into 2021 with the Sooners’ starting safeties returning.
For someone who played both nickelback and linebacker, it goes without saying that he’s big, athletic and versatile. He’s listed at 6’2, 230-lbs., but he figures to slim down to around 220-lbs. if he plans on playing in the secondary. That’s where he will shine with his length, athleticism and intelligence.
“He is a great team guy,” Oklahoma beat writer Brandon Drumm described to Adam Munsterteiger. “You are talking about a guy that didn’t whine or gripe publicly. He just kept his nose down, played special teams when that was the only opportunity he was given, and he did his best at it. He will be an instant leader if given a chance at Colorado.