The incoming 2016 class for the Buffaloes is one of the most college-ready classes to come to Boulder since Mike MacIntyre came here. Legit blue-chippers, physical specimens and skilled athletes all look ready to contribute right away for CU. Realistically, Coach Mac will only take the redshirt off of five or six in such a small class, and the only position where help is needed is probably the defensive backfield. Some freshmen will force their way on the field. In that way, Mac has set up the team very well. Ralphie Report will look at three freshmen that are most likely to help the team in the fall.
Bisharat was a nice signing-day surprise for CU. After he decommitted from Stanford, Bisharat was getting interest from all over the country, but he chose to come to Boulder and he will play more for it. Bisharat is 6’2 and around 220 pounds and he chose to apply his talents at running back rather than linebacker. Even though it is a crowded backfield in Boulder, no one quite has the size that he does and that distinction alone will earn him playing time. Bisharat is more than just a big body, however.
Beau has soft hands out of the backfield, making him an intriguing option in 2-back sets or as an H-back, and he has very nice short area wiggle. He can pop in and out of holes quickly and lay the hurt on tacklers. Bisharat will slot in nicely with Donovan Lee, Phillip Lindsay, Michael Adkins, and George Frazier. Expect Bisharat to start with a little touches, with a lot coming in the Idaho State game. By conference play, especially the end of conference play, he will be punishing defenses regularly.
Huntley is as physically ready as you will see for a freshman receiver. Huntley chose the Buffs over some pretty stiff competition, and now the future star from South Florida will get a chance to show his stuff all four years. Huntley almost mirrors incoming JuCo wideout Juwann Winfree in physique. The difference is that Winfree is two years older. All of 6’3 and about 205 pounds, Johnny Huntley has the size to box out almost every defensive back and the speed to separate past the entire front seven. Put him in for the red zone and watch him get touchdowns, or use him as a possession receiver.
Y’know the unfair play in the Madden games, Curl Flats? Huntley has the type of body that makes the play unfair. Huntley will find his way into playing time almost immediately. While Shay Fields and Juwann Winfree presumably have a lock on starting positions, the new wide-open offense will often utilize three or four receivers. Bryce Bobo looks to get playing time, as does Devin Ross in the slot. But after Fields, Winfree, and Ross, Huntley doesn’t seem markedly worse than the other contenders, and that is before the fans have seen him in summer workouts and fall camp. He is the type of elite Power 5 athlete that CU should fill their teams with. It’s hard to imagine CSU, Idaho State, or Oregon State (sorry, Beavs) having an answer for Huntley.
Fans will see Udoffia on the field often, probably too often for comfort. This is not a criticism of Trey, but rather of the low numbers of scholarship defensive backs. And it gets worse after this year, but that’s another story. The top line of CU DB’s is one of the best in the conference, but the backups either don’t exist or are greenhorns. Udoffia fits the second category. Luckily, he looks up for the challenge.
An improbable state champion from California, Udoffia faced stiff competition his entire senior from future Division 1 players, and that baptism by fire will get him ready for the baptism by molten lava that is Pac-12 conference play for a DB. Udoffia has that length that Coach Mac LOVES in his defensive backfield, but he also has great ball skills (played both ways in high school) and super short area quickness. Udoffia sees the ball and pounces on it, leaving the receiver no time and no room to make anything out of the play. The one thing that could hold Udoffia back is his weight, as he was a bit slight in high school. If Trey can put on 15 pounds from signing day to opening night, he should be good to go. He can spell Afolabi Laguda at nickel back or go out to the boundary and play meaningful snaps there. Either way, expect to hear his name a lot in this upcoming season.