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Keeler: Deion Sanders’ new offensive line coach wants CU Buffs to “build a fence” that stops top Colorado recruits from leaving. Can we get a hallelujah?

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Keeler: Deion Sanders’ new offensive line coach wants CU Buffs to “build a fence” that stops top Colorado recruits from leaving. Can we get a hallelujah?


BOULDER — Godzilla wouldn’t throw down with Phil Loadholt. Unless the King of the Monsters wants a place of honor among Deion Sanders’ luggage, best swing that mighty tail ’round the other direction and run, son.

If the Buffs’ new offensive line coach is ever cornered in a dark alley by a bear, Yogi’s as good as a rug. At 6-foot-8, 340-ish pounds, when Loadholt rises and stretches at the dawn of a new day, the man blots out the sun.

“It’s like (an) eclipse walked outta here,” CU’s wide receivers coach Jason Phillips cracked Monday as he replaced Loadholt on a makeshift podium across the hall from The Buff Team Store.

Like tugging on Superman’s cape, spitting into the wind and pulling the mask off that old Lone Ranger, you mess around with Phil at your peril.

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“We want to recruit the top talent, as you’ve seen with Jordan (Seaton) coming in,” Loadholt said when I asked him about his philosophy and lodestar. “And then hopefully keep the guys that are in-state (in Colorado), keep them here.”

(Sound of a record scratching, then silence.)

Whoa, whoa, whoa.

Go on.

“I know we’ve got some good linemen (from Colorado) that are at other places right now,” Loadholt continued. “And we hopefully can build a fence around that and keep those guys here so that we don’t have look at other places, you know what I mean? So hopefully, we can start building that relationship around the state.”

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Priority for you?

“One-hundred percent. One-hundred percent.”

As Loadholt spoke, off in the distance, I could almost hear ex-CU big man Matt McChesney scream out a “hallelujah” from halfway across town.

The first step toward addressing a problem? Admitting you have one in the first place. Since 2017, per 247Sports.com’s database, Colorado high schools have produced seven offensive line prospects who rated as four stars or higher, or an average of one per recruiting cycle. The Buffs wound up signing … one of them.

And while Coach Prime is more of a “let’s portal them in as free agents when they’re juniors or seniors” sort than a developmental, Kirk Ferentz, Barry Alvarez, Bill Snyder kind of guy, talent is talent. And baby steps forward are still steps. Especially when they’re trending in the right direction.

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“Being a good player doesn’t make you a good coach,” the first-time offensive line boss noted. “I understand that as well. But I definitely lean on my experience.”

At 38, Loadholt is a blocker who’s been around the block a bit. A star in football, basketball and track for Fountain-Fort Carson, his frame and pedigree blossomed at Garden City (Kan.) Community College, then at the University of Oklahoma. The Minnesota Vikings plucked him in the second round of the 2009 NFL Draft, and he proved to be a mainstay up front in the Great White North until injuries hastened his retirement in the summer of 2016. The coaching bug bit, and stops on the staffs at UCF, Mississippi and Oklahoma led Coach Prime to make Loadholt his offensive line guru this past offseason.

“(The hiring process) was surreal, man,” Loadholt recalled. “It was full circle for me, obviously, being (from) about an hour and 45 minutes down the road. So being able to come back to my hometown, spend time with my parents and my sister, who still live here … it’s great.”

We learned a lot about Sanders last year, for better or worse. The only quicker way into Coach Prime’s doghouse than becoming a sports columnist is being CU’s offensive line coach after Shedeur Sanders just spent three hours running for his life on national television.

“No, he made that clear,” Loadholt said with a grin. “He made that very clear. But the interview process was real. I went and (saw) him, went down to his house and (saw) him and spent some time with him down there and let him know my philosophy and how I want to take care of things.

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“And that point (about Shedeur) was definitely made, that it’s important to keep the quarterback up. So I’m excited to have that chance to do that.”

According to 247, the top in-state prep prospect for the Class of ’25 is another top-shelf lineman, Cherry Creek tackle Soren Shinofield. The Buffs haven’t offered yet, reportedly. But if Loadholt is serious about building a fence, he can start with the garden out back.

Want more sports news? Sign up for the Sports Omelette to get all our analysis on Denver’s teams.





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Denver, CO

Broncos new uniforms mostly a win

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Broncos new uniforms mostly a win


Well, Broncos Country, what do you think?

The wait for new uniforms is officially over. The colors remain largely the same (the navy blue may actually be darker or just look that way) and the logos are untouched. The color combinations will take some time to get used to. Some are much better than others.

Marking the Broncos’ first major uniform change since 1997, the Mile High Collection integrates elements of the Colorado landscape throughout the jerseys, helmets and pants while offering nine primary uniform combinations. The new set features the Broncos’ current logo and colors—Sunset Orange (home), Summit White (away) and Midnight Navy (alternate)—along with metallic satin helmets in navy (home/away) and white (alternate).

The white helmet is a total homerun. First introduced last year with the classic ‘D’ logo, it’s hard to believe that it looks even better with the current horse head logo. The sleeves are thoughtful in integrating the jawline of the horse logo as well as calling back to the sleeve design of the mid-60’s uniforms.

Then there are the triangles and the elevation of the 5280’ to the uniform. It’s going to take a bit to get the fanbase to embrace the triangle-life. Fears of the 5280’ on the pants, jersey, and helmet were misplaced. All elements of the uniform integrate it in solid ways.

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Gone on the helmet is the solid orange stripe that diminished as it goes from back to front. In it’s place are more triangles (meh). It’s a cleaner look for the helmet for sure. The 5280’ on the front is a great addition.

Immediately following the release of the new uniforms was the unveiling of the throwback uniforms. As expected, they are as amazing today as they were back in the day. It’s going to be awesome seeing these on the field once again.

The collection also introduces the highly anticipated throwback orange uniform that includes the iconic Legacy Blue ‘D’ helmet, playing tribute to the Orange Crush era and the Broncos’ first Super Bowl appearance in 1977. Including the throwback closet, the Mile High Collection features a total of 10 uniform combinations, four jerseys and three helmets to demonstrate the versatility of the Broncos’ new look.

As someone who remembers when the Denver Broncos played in these every week, it’s a picture like this that reminds you of just how big the pads were back in the day.

So, there you have it, Broncos Country! These are your new uniforms for better or worse. I think the Broncos came out ahead on these. The throwbacks are a huge win and the new uniforms aren’t so bad that I’m throwing things.

Now all we need is some players to wear these jerseys! On to the draft and the 2024 season!





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NBA Playoffs Betting Guide: Los Angeles Lakers vs. Denver Nuggets Game 2

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NBA Playoffs Betting Guide: Los Angeles Lakers vs. Denver Nuggets Game 2


The betting landscape is exciting as the Los Angeles Lakers gear up to take on the Denver Nuggets in Game 2 of their first-round NBA playoff series. The Lakers are looking to rebound after a tough loss in the series opener, where, despite a strong start, they could not maintain momentum against the Nuggets’ robust second-half performance. The Nuggets, leading the series 1-0, are coming off a decisive win fueled by a standout performance from Nikola Jokic. This backdrop sets the stage for a highly anticipated matchup, with the betting public and fans keenly analyzing the odds and potential outcomes to make informed wagers.

Game Recap and Key Players

In Game 1, the Lakers fell 114-103 despite solid performances from LeBron James and Anthony Davis, who combined for 59 points, 20 rebounds, and 11 assists. However, efficiency from beyond the arc and overall team depth proved problematic for the Lakers, further compounded by Cam Reddish’s and Jarred Vanderbilt’s absences. The Nuggets, led by Nikola Jokic’s 32 points, 12 rebounds, and seven assists, showed their prowess, particularly in the latter half of the game, to secure the win.

Betting Odds and Analysis

According to Matchbook, the Nuggets are 7.5-point favorites heading into Game 2, with the total over/under set at 223 points. Here’s a breakdown of the betting scenario:

  • Point Spread: The Nuggets, with a season record of 38-42-2 against the spread, have been less predictable in covering large spreads, whereas the Lakers have shown resilience as underdogs, boasting a 3-1 record when the spread is 7.5 points or more.
  • Total Points Over/Under: Games involving these teams have frequently surpassed the 223-point mark this season, suggesting a potential for a high-scoring game. The combined scoring average of both teams exceeds this total, which might incline bettors towards the Over.
  • Moneyline: The Nuggets at -290 are heavy favorites, indicating strong confidence in their ability to secure a win, especially at home. However, the Lakers at +235 could offer value, given their potential to upset, evidenced by their competitive first-half performance in Game 1.

Betting Picks and Predictions

  • Spread Betting: Given the Lakers’ ability to compete and the high stakes of playoff basketball, taking the Lakers +7.5 could be a smart bet. The key will be their ability to adjust defensively and slow down Jokic while capitalizing on LeBron and Davis’s scoring.
  • Total Points: Betting the Over on 223 points seems promising, given both teams’ offensive capabilities and previous scoring trends.
  • Moneyline: While the Nuggets are favorites, those looking for higher returns might consider a small wager on the Lakers, who have the star power to swing the game in their favor potentially.

Why the Lakers Could Cover the Spread/Win

The Los Angeles Lakers showcased their potential in the first half of Game 1, with LeBron James and Anthony Davis leading the charge. This dynamic duo’s performance strongly indicates the Lakers’ ability to dominate when they’re at their best. If James and Davis maintain their form, and the team can replicate their first-half performance from Game 1, they have a solid chance to cover the spread and possibly secure a win in Game 2. The key to leveraging their star power is consistency throughout the game, avoiding the drop in intensity that allowed the Nuggets to take over in the second half.

Additionally, the Lakers’ defensive strategy needs to focus significantly on Nikola Jokic. Jokic’s influence on the game is profound, and limiting his effectiveness can tilt the game in the Lakers’ favor. Tactical adjustments could be crucial, such as strategic double-teaming or rotational changes to minimize his touches. Successfully executing these adjustments could be the difference-maker, helping the Lakers cover the spread and position themselves for a win.

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Why the Nuggets Could Cover the Spread/Win

The Denver Nuggets’ defensive capabilities were a highlight of their regular-season performance, finishing with the fourth-lowest field goal percentage allowed and the eighth-lowest in three-point percentage. This solid defensive foundation was evident as they held the Lakers to 103 points in the first game. Historically, when the Nuggets keep their opponents under 110 points, they have a solid winning record (37-7 this season). If they continue to apply this defensive pressure, especially on home turf, they will probably cover the spread in Game 2.

Nikola Jokic’s scoring ability is another critical factor for the Nuggets. Denver had a commendable record of 40-14 when Jokic scored at least 25 points. His scoring not only boosts the team’s offensive output but also his playmaking and rebounding contribute significantly to the team’s overall performance. The Lakers aim to neutralize him, but ensuring Jokic can continue to score and influence the game remains a priority for the Nuggets. If Jokic can maintain his scoring momentum and the team supports him defensively as they did in Game 1, the Nuggets are well-positioned to secure another victory.

How to Watch

The game will tip off at 10:00 PM ET and broadcast live on TNT. For those betting, watching pre-game injury reports and lineup changes will be essential for last-minute adjustments.





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Supreme Court could affect how cities like Denver deal with the unhoused

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Supreme Court could affect how cities like Denver deal with the unhoused


Supreme Court could affect how cities like Denver deal with the unhoused – CBS Colorado

Watch CBS News


Denver Mayor Mike Johnston has been trying to find housing for the unhoused, but that’s easier said than done. Tina says she’s been trying to find housing for twenty years but all the hoops she has had to jump through make it difficult.

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