Sports Illustrated named University of Colorado Buffaloes Head Coach Deion Sanders their 2023 Sportsperson of the Year Thursday morning. Sports Illustrated made the announcement on X.
Coach Prime ended his first season as head coach of the CU Buffs on a six-game losing streak, finishing the year with a 4-8 record, and placing last in the PAC 12, but brought an undeniable spark and spotlight to Colorado football that hasn't been seen in years.
Win or lose, Sanders' presence on the sidelines of Folsom Field has heralded a change for the better for the University of Colorado. In the article, Sports Illustrated points out:
"First-year applications are up 26.4% year over year; Black or African American applications are up 80.6%; nonresident applications are up 29.8%; and international applications are up 38.4% from 97 countries, including 16 that didn't have any applications last year. While those numbers cannot be definitively linked to Sanders, others can be: September sales at the school's online team store were up 2,544% over the same month in 2022. Every home game in 50,183-seat Folsom Field was sold out for the first time in school history."
In addition, the University of Colorado announced in September every home game had been sold out for the first time in program history.
CBS Sports published a retrospective look at the season for the Buffs earlier this week and pointed to the Saturday Night Live parody which further elevated Coach Prime's unique persona to an audience not necessarily focused on college football.
Regardless of the fanfare, Sanders wants to win. Immediately following their last loss of the season, Sanders was already looking to next season and talking about the work he would be doing in recruiting to assemble a team equipped to win every game.
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