ESPN analysts don't believe Colorado football will achieve Deion Sanders' 2024 goal

Colorado Football Spring Game
Colorado Football Spring Game / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages

During the 2024 Colorado football Black and Gold spring game, Deion Sanders promised Buffs superfan Peggy Coppom six wins and a bowl game appearance during the upcoming campaign; the program's return to the Big 12 after over a decade in the Pac-12.

ESPN's Pete Thamel and Rece Davis both believe the Buffs will fall short of that goal, citing concerns with the offensive line ahead of Shedeur Sanders and the strength of schedule they'll face in a Big 12 that looks much different from the last time CU was a participating member.

“Looking now I would take the under on 5.5,” Thamel said (h/t On3). “Now Shedeur, it needs to be said, I texted some NFL guys this morning because I knew we were going to be talking about this. A lot of NFL teams evaluated Shedeur last year because he was draft-eligible, and got a couple different responses back, but the thought is he’ll be at the top of this quarterback class.

“You can blame a lot of people for 52 sacks right? But at a certain point the quarterbacks’s gonna get rid of the ball on some of those … He needs to get better in realizing how to get out of things. So I’m a fan of Shedeur Sanders, we’re gonna have him in the green room in Green Bay next year. But I’m just not as confident on what’s around him, especially still up front. So I’m gonna go under.”

“Me too, and I think also as you look at their schedule. Not that home and road is everything, the biggest win of the year last year was on the road at . But they’re at , they’re at , they’re at , they’re at , they’re at , two of the teams that I think can win the Big 12,” Davis said referring to the Jayhawks and Wildcats. “I think, as difficult as it is to evaluate. So I’m going to go under too, I think they’ll be under five.”

Deion Sanders' Colorado football roster-building strategy will be put to the test in 2024

The 2023 season was a great experiment in Boulder with the historic roster overhaul from the Karl Dorrell era, but there will be far less grace during the 2024 season considering Sanders has had a full offseason recruiting cycle and the previous Fall to entice recruits from all levels to join the "Prime Time" era at CU.

Many are writing off his 40-40-20 strategy before even seeing what his second season has in store, and while that may be premature, Sanders is certainly running out of time to show the college football world that his unorthodox style can lead to success.

After his first-round NFL draft-worthy son, Shedeur, vacates the quarterback position, Coach Prime will need to come up with a suitable replacement -- less risk the possibility that Colorado won't be substantially improved under his watch at all.