Coach Prime justified in apprehension about promoting unsuccessful Colorado football OC

New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur on the field for warm ups before they face the New York Jets
New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur on the field for warm ups before they face the New York Jets / Danielle Parhizkaran/,

Denver Sports' Jake Shapiro believes Coach Prime was justified in his apprehension about promoting Pat Shurmur to the Colorado football offensive coordinator position full-time; believing that the Buffs ultimately "settled" on Shurmur instead of landing a more exciting candidate.

"Coach Prime is justified in his apprehension," Shapiro prefaced before saying, "The Buffs offense has the potential to be one of the best in the country, led by his possible No. 1 overall 2025 NFL Draft pick son Shedeur. Add in Heisman candidate Travis Hunter, a heap of highly-touted wideouts, and a rebuilt offensive line, and Shurmur could be cooking with gas. Though, Shurmur as recently as last year, shows he struggles to spark any offense. Shurmur’s last job before Boulder was a disaster in leading the Broncos offense.

"With a full offseason on the job and new jimmies and joes, maybe Shurmur can find the grove that earned him the 2017 NFL assistant coach of the year. But again, Sanders taking two months to hand him a job which he obviously was going to get the whole time says a lot about the possibility Colorado settled here."

Sean Lewis's demotion, Pat Shurmur's promotion, a gamble that didn't pay off for Colorado football

CBS Sports’ Will Backus saw Coach Prime's decision to demote Sean Lewis, the former full-time offensive coordinator who became a co-OC, and promote Shurmur, as a gamble that didn't pay off in 2023.

“Colorado coach Deion Sanders, desperately seeking a spark amid a rough stretch of four losses in five games, made a drastic change ahead of the Buffaloes’ Week 10 game against Oregon State by stripping offensive coordinator Sean Lewis of play-calling duties in favor of former NFL coach Pat Shurmur,” Backus prefaced before saying, “The gamble didn’t pay off. Colorado was held without a touchdown until late in the fourth quarter when the Buffaloes managed two scores in the last 15 minutes before ultimately falling 26-19.”

Shurmur does feel like a mild letdown for the Buffs, since the offense struggled mightily against Oregon State and even more so against Wazzu, but it's clear Coach Prime isn't afraid to pull the plug if need be; and that is likely doubly so in his son Shedeur's final audition for the NFL.